Being in a perpetual state of war is the perfect way to deflect attention away from the lack of civil rights and liberties and from the growing gap between rich and poor. After all, your boss can't be your enemy if you're fighting an endless war with a neighboring country.
Just look at what evil plans our enemy has in store, the government tells its people. We must defend ourselves against the aggressor next door.We all must make sacrifices so that we can outlast our enemy and win this war. Protesting about your station in life will only show our enemy chinks in our armor -- it is the equivalent of treason. Rally behind the flag.
And so it went in Egypt until a week ago when the masses finally reached their breaking point. Without having Israel as the perpetual enemy of the people, light has finally shone on the policies of the Mubarak government that have left the vast majority of Egyptians living in poverty.
Of course the United States has been in a continual state of war since the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Japan. Germany. The Soviet Union. Vietnam. Libya. Iraq. Afghanistan. Poverty. Drugs. Terrorism.