U.S. soldiers set to deploy to Egypt for riot control

| June 21, 2013

I saw in my Facebook thing this scary headline from the Washington Times; “U.S. soldiers set to deploy to Egypt for riot control“, so naturally, I read the story at the link. Turns out that they’re talking about the Multinational Force and Observers peacekeeping force that has been going on since the Carter years;

A group of U.S. soldiers are rocked and ready to deploy to Egypt for a 9-month peacekeeping mission aimed at curbing riots.

More than 400 American troops will ultimately go, as part of the Multinational Force and Observers peacekeeping force, KDH News reported. Their mission: To man posts and security checkpoints along the Sinai Peninsula. They’re also tasked with reporting violations to the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel, KDH News said. KCEN reported that they will engage if protests and riots reach the point of threatening Israel’s security.

Part of their training included how to respond to Molotov cocktails, KCEN reported.

The force is comprised of soldiers from 13 nations.

I guess, what with the wars recently and the “Arab Spring” everyone forgot that the US has been deploying troops to the Sinai to keep Egypt and Israel separated since the the two nations and the US signed the Camp David Accords in 1978. The US began supplying troops to the mission in 1982. And they’ve been trained for riots since then, too. But, thanks for finally noticing, Washington Times.

Category: Media, Military issues

Comments (19)

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  1. Ex-PH2 says:

    Ah, ha! Finally, there is proof that the media have a severe case of short-term memory loss. Not a pretty thing.

    Well, at least they did notice… however, briefly.

  2. Twist says:

    I did that mission twice in the 90’s and loved it. I got to see the pyramids, the Cairo museum, climb Mt Sinai, and do the Holy Land tour. I also learned that Elat, Israel is one heck of a party town.

  3. WebsterICT says:

    I was in the third rotation for the MFO in 1983.

  4. Andy says:

    man….*kicks dirt*, I never got to do one of the rotations to Sinai. The life of a Mechanized Infantryman sucked. Met a lot of guys that did do a rotation over there. The tales they told me of getting to go down to the Israeli resort where the Sinai and Israel meet at the Red Sea blew my mind. Made a Friday night in TDC off of Camp Casey look like Sunday School.

  5. Dave Thul says:

    There was an Iowa battalion with the Minnesota Red Bulls in Iraq in 2006 that had done the Sinai deployment. 90% came home scuba qualified. Tough job.

  6. Pathfinder says:

    Their minds will be really blown when they find out about operation bright star and the airborne ops that are conducted. Ooooh scary

  7. Stuart Clark says:

    I heard that mission has been relegated to the National Guard for the most part anymore. I have a friend that was deployed there the same time Desert Shield/Storm was going on. He said it was a good deployment.

  8. beretverde says:

    @6…yep…Brightstar…and why we went to the M16A2s because of it.

  9. pete says:

    how bout they just deploy these troop’s on our own border with live ammo?

  10. COB6 says:

    I think this is different than the long running Operation Brightstar that most of us participated in at least once in our careers. I say that because as far back as I remember (OBS 82) Brightstar was only a little over 3 months, not 9 months as mentioned above.

  11. JD11b says:

    Any deployment that the DMD requires a couple of lifeguard certified soldiers can’t be all bad. I knew a bunch of the soldiers from the 1-133 IN that did the deployment in 03 or 04 and Dave Thul is correct, many came back with a civilian scuba certification through a course taught by nice expat German gal.

    They also got an 18th airborne corps combat patch under OIF orders for the MNFO mission. I was with the 1-133 in Iraq when that news came in. I sent a BFT to a buddy out on convoy on RTE MOBILE who had been with me for KFOR 5b peacekeeping in Kosovo in 04. The gist was “WTF an SSI for sitting on the beach drinking beer, when we had guys getting purple hearts during the March riots?” One 1SG did take his soldiers to task for wearing the dragoon patch instead of the red bull.

    I think the active duty has taken back over MNFO mission as they have just taken over KFOR as well. But looking at all the interesting things noted about the Sinai in the long war journal these days I am sure they won’t be spending too much time sitting on the beach at Sharm. See http://www.longwarjournal.org/tags/Egypt/common/

  12. TMB says:

    One of my classmates was in the 101st and participated in a Sinai deployment in the mid-2000s.

  13. FrostyCWO says:

    Watched the full video on the KCEN website. The Soldiers appear to be active duty Troopers from the 1st Cavalry Division “1st Team!”. This is as much about about keeping active duty engaged with the war winding down as it is about protecting force structure. The budget ax is harder to swing if the leaders of the force can demonstrate that they’re engaged in missions.

  14. Ptolemy in Egypt says:

    Wow…talk about a complete about face! Washington Times just ran what amounts to a complete retraction
    Amazing how different the story looks now compared to before. Guess that reporter had to do a pretty big Ruh-roh to the editors.

  15. BK says:

    I like how they didn’t note it was a retraction.

    The Rakkasans helped out with an earthquake in the 1990s. MFO used to be one of those great tours for infantrymen back in the day, if one got South Camp.

    I wouldn’t want it now. Morsi’s been busily putting uparmored vehicles and troops in the no-no zone. At some point we may need to rethink staffing the MFO with Guard and consider active duty again, even if it was shifted so as not to interfere with active duty dwell time. Nothing like sitting watch in the middle of a failed state with nothing but animosity towards Israel.

  16. Twist says:

    BK, The mission is going back to Active Duty. I’m assigned to the MOB station where the NG does there train up enroute to MFO. KFOR is also going back to the Active Duty.

  17. Sparks says:

    I know we have and still do need to protect the Sanai but boots on the ground in Egypt for crowd and riot control is asking for another escalation. As I said protect the Sinai but no troops in the Egyptian cities for riot control. It is asking for big trouble down the road. IMHO