Friday, November 6, 2015

And the Russians joined the Sharm El-Sheikh saga

Just from hours ago, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the suspension of all Russian passenger flights to Egypt until the cause of the Russian plane crash in Sinai is revealed.
He also gave his orders to the Russian government to work on the return of the Russian tourists in
Tourists departing Sharm El-Sheikh airport early
Friday "Reuters" 
In other words, Putin orders the evacuation of Russian tourists from all over the country.
The decision comes hours after the decision of UK and what it caused.
According to Russian media, there are not less than 70,000 Russian tourists in Egypt.
This decision was issued after the meeting of Putin with security and aviation officials in Moscow.
Before that meeting, the head of the Russian Federal Security service called for the suspension of all Russian flights to Egypt.
Of course, a man like him for sure presented what was enough to convince the Russian president to take such decision without talking to the Egyptians.
This is even a bigger blow to the Egyptian government because this is Russia, the so-called Sisi’s faithful friend.
Well, the faithful friend suspended the flights to Egypt not only Sharm El-Sheikh in clear direct words.
Russia is one of the main members in the investigation team when it comes to the Russian Plane crash along with France and Ireland, Egypt and surprisingly Germany.
It turned out that Germany was involved in the investigation by the request of Egypt.
Of course today was one hell of a day in Sharm El-sheikh airport with a lot of drama and scandals of real.
More countries are issuing travel warning about Egypt. We got now UK, France, Russia, Spain, South Korea ,Belgium and Holland.
According to Reuters, 7 countries including UK and Turkey send delegations to check on security procedures in Egypt.
Egyptian news reports say that the two Black boxes are being examined in Russia and not in Egypt.
Despite the Russians as well the British and the Europeans officials are speaking, we have not heard anything official from Egypt for real aside that the investigations.
Leaving Sharm El-Sheikh airport early Friday
Egypt is going to pay a huge price for this. Tourism is already recovering and Sharm El-Sheikh was from the few places that were not affected by what is happening in the Nile Valley or even in North Sinai
I do not recall this hysteria or this fiasco happening in this way during the true terrorism years where tourists were a target for terrorists.
Of course, we are speaking about a plane crash where over 200 people were killed. There has been a lot of controversy about the Malaysian airplane that went missing in the pacific ocean as well the Malaysian airplane that was shot down in Ukraine but back in Egypt we have a short memory.
What is worse in our case, which is similar to the incident in Ukraine unfortunately that there are politics involved.
This plane could be bombed by a local terrorist group and by this we could  have the biggest airplane bombing since 11 September 2001.
After 2001 and what followed it, there have been maximum airport security measures to stop air flights hijacking and that’s why there are concerns about the security measures at Sharm El-Sheikh airport.
The most popular theory “the worst case” now is that a bomb was planted on the board of the Russian flight among the luggage and that Sharm El-Sheikh airport was infiltrated in a way or another by Islamic group affiliated group “Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis”, which is active in North Sinai.
That’s why all those countries are sending their security delegations to check on the airport.
Now if it is proven to be a bomb, it will be a blow to both Egypt and Russia.
For Russia, this would be the first attack on Russian civilians because of Russia’s involvement in Syria.
For Egypt, this would be the ultimate failure for El-Sisi internationally and local in his war on terrorism.
First, his administration or government could not secure flights as required and second his strategies to fight a terrorist organization like Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis proved to be a failure to the level that he could not stop an attack against foreigners like that.
Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis aka Sinai Province which pledge allegiance to the Islamic State group in 2014
Now there are more sources including those working in the investigation team telling international reports that they heard sounds of explosions recorded near the cockpit.
One thing for sure , Egypt will recover this crisis as we have done, but it will be hard.
The Egyptian economy is suffering big time already. Despite this is not a seasonal time in Sharm El-Sheikh but the Egyptian tourism sector is thinking about the Christmas and holiday seasons coming within weeks.
Even if the airplane crash is proved to be caused by a technical failure in the engine or the tail as claimed in the media as well, the damage has done after those two crazy days.
We will have to wait for months till we compensate for real what we lost in those few days.


  1. Concerned expat11/06/2015 11:20:00 PM

    Yes, Egypt is suffering. So are the families of the more than 200 people who died.

  2. A terrorist movement sponsored and aided by Putin brought down the MH-17 in Ukraine. If ISIS brought down this plane, it will mean both were downed by terrorists.

  3. Some time last August a British plane missed a rocket by 1000 ft, so we really can't blame the Russians, British or any other nation to err on the side of caution, people's life out there have value & not five a dime. Egyptian government lacks transparency & hide behind mambo jumbo that is unknown in the west. So far it is not known what kind of personnel investigation was conducted just to make sure that no security lapses happened in Sharm El-Sheik airport and till Egyptian authority comes clean, trust was lost.

  4. I can understand the Government of Egypt wanting to play it down, because of their own political posturing to millions about their ability to "keep their citizens and others safe", however, are they not still ignoring the fact of Co-Pilot Baututi in his suicidal mission from years ago when he locked out the co-pilots and nosedived to the sea? This has been thoroughly investigated by the FBI in this country for Egypt, but Egypt continues to today to deny that he did this. :( I can understanding politically why they'd do this. Our country lies too to it's citizens all the time.

    So sorry for the Russian passengers now, and of course for ALL of Egypt in the tourist trade, even the vendors of course., the carriage drivers, all terrible. NOW, the govt. will have to dip into their $$$ reserves to food them and help clothe and buy subsidize the petrol more then before I'm guessing :( :(

  5. IF Sisi would admit to the millions, that indeed, this was a terrorist act and now Egypt has fixed what is broken, i.e. the airports, even the smaller ones, to the same standards as the Western countries like London, New York and Paris, perhaps then the countries governments would lift their restrictions. But to continue to deny harms the populace I think even more then admitting. Just in my opinion however as a prior tourist 5 times, last time 2011 after Mubarak left.


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