Summary: Egypt should learn a few lessons from NATO’s experience in Afghanistan: ‘carrot and stick’ policies work better than ‘stick’ alone. The central government must invest more in the region and it must also deal with the local Bedouins, who have often challenged the Egyptian central authorities, whom they blame are refusing to recognize their rights. The Bedouin clans are a separate hazard from the jihadists, and can be somewhat co-opted to help reduce the more radical or ideological elements from a region that was already fertile for violence before the July coup. Egypt must actually invest in infrastructure, grant the Bedouins the right to ownership of the land in order to prevent them from supporting the jihadists in their effort to convert the Sinai into a battlefield. Little is known about the Islamic militants who are making the Sinai their home and base; nevertheless, the armed forces say that most are Egyptian, and some come from Gaza, and that there has already been some sort of diversification into various groups.
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