Americans and global economic pundits breathed a sigh of relief when Washington finally stepped back from the fiscal cliff on New Years Day. But there's another cliff looming in 2013 that left unaddressed, can shove all into the abyss of a Middle East Armageddon:
We are now confronted with two Middle East regimes, Iran's Mullahtocracy and the Muslim Brotherhood-led Egyptian government, who treat anti-Semitism not as a social disease, but as social and foreign policy.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center just released its Top Ten Anti-Semitic Slurs. It actually places the Muslim Brotherhood, atop the list, ahead of the nuclear-seeking Iranian regime, whose Holocaust denial and genocide-threats against the Jewish state rhetoric is well established.
However, the emergence of the anti-Semitic Muslim Brotherhood as the key player in the Arab World's most populous and influential nation has already spawned ominous anti-Jewish rhetoric and actions:
*The government has announced that Cairo's last remaining synagogue -- which has functioned for over 100 years, is no longer to be referred to as a Jewish Holy site but merely a building of interest because of its architecture.
* Muslim Brotherhood's Essam al-Aryan said that within ten years, "There will be no such thing as Israel"
* The spokesman of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mahmoud Ghozlan, bristled at the suggestion that Jews who fled Egypt after Israel's creation in 1948, should be invited to return to the 'new' Egypt: "Egyptian Jews are criminals who must be punished for what they did to Egypt and the Palestinians," he declared.
* In the last few weeks, Mohammed Badie, the Spiritual Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, launched an anti-Semitic call to Jihad:"The Jews have dominated the land, spread corruption on earth, spilled the blood of believers and in their actions profaned holy places. Zionists only understand the language of force and will not relent without duress. This will happen only through holy Jihad."
*Egyptian President Morsi was seen answering a fervent amen to this nationally televised prayer at a mosque:
"Oh Allah, destroy the Jews and their supporters -- Oh Allah, disperse them and rend them asunder, Oh Allah, demonstrate your might and greatness upon them."
Now, MEMRI, the respected Middle East research group has published a 2010 interview with Morsi wherein he refers to Jews as " descendants of apes and pigs... "
This poisonous mindset is also reflected in growing anti-Christian rhetoric that threatens to further isolate and target Egypt's largest minority, the over 10 million Coptic Christians.
These ominous developments take place even as Egypt's top competitor for leadership in the Muslim world, Iran, continues its own anti-Semitic invective and threats against the Jewish state.
As he begins his second, "legacy" term we look to President Obama to use his clout to demand that Morsi curb the hatred. For now, the Egyptian leader should be reminded he has 12 billion reasons to cooperate. That is the amount of aid he is asking from the United States, the World Bank and the European Union to help prop up his nation's ailing economy.
If Morsi fails to put a brake on the Brotherhood's hate, they and their ilk could drag the entire region to the edge of the other cliff.