Israel should welcome change in Egypt

Israel’s government seemed oblivious to the irony of its message: “We are your only reliable ally because we are a democracy and whatever you do don’t abandon Mubarak and open the way there for democracy.’’

What is really unfortunate is that everyone can or should understand Israel’s strategic concerns. They are totally valid. The peace treaty with Egypt has been the cornerstone of Israeli strategy and economic growth for 30 years. Israel has scrupulously abided by the treaty. Of course Israelis are worried about convulsion here. How could they not? But the way they are handling themselves, is not helping them…

The ferocity and popularity of Mubarak’s ouster should have told Israelis that they need to get to work immediately on building a relationship with the dynamic new popular trend here, not to be trying to cling to a dictator who was totally out of touch with his people. And, as we sit here today, the popular trend is not with the Muslim Brotherhood. Indeed, what makes the uprising here so impressive – and in that sense so dangerous to other autocracies in the region – is precisely the fact that it is not owned by, and was not inspired by, the Muslim Brotherhood.

It is so much more powerful than that.