British tourists should return to Egypt – staying away is what terrorists want
"More than 900,000 British nationals visit Egypt every year," says the current Foreign Office travel advice. "Most visits are trouble-free."
The second part is true. The first, sadly, isn't.
And the large shortfall is not just comprised of holidaymakers who would love to visit Sharm el-Sheikh but can't, following the apparent bombing of a Russian jet in October; it also includes many people who will mistakenly conclude that all of Egypt is off-limits.
Yet this is an excellent time to visit most of the nation's tourist areas. A few hundred canny travellers will wake up on New Year's Day in the luxury Steigenberger Nile Palace in Luxor. They are enjoying winter sunshine at absurd prices: under £400, including flights, for a week's package holiday in one of the great hubs of antiquity.
Safe? As with France, the Foreign Office deems Egypt to have a high threat of terrorism.
But British tourists should certainly go: partly because they will be able to reach deep into the history of civilisation; partly because it's a fabulous time to get bargains; and partly because if we comply with the terrorists' aims and hand them a victory in their campaign to eradicate tourism, we make ourselves more vulnerable.