Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi is trying to prevent escalation in Libya, where Turkey has sent thousands of Syrian Arab mercenaries and drones to fight against the Egyptian-backed Libya National Army (LNA). At stake is increasing regional hegemony that Turkey may be trying to push and a contest between Egypt, its Gulf allies and the Turkey-Qatar-Iran alliance system. This means Libya is a kind of proxy war.US President Donald Trump spoke to Sisi on Monday. This comes five days after Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke about Libya. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also spoke to his Russian counterpart about Libya. Trump called for de-escalation in Libya in May, and it appears Trump and Erdogan spoke in June about Libya. Turkey says it has pressured the US to do more in Libya. US diplomats have appeared to side with the Turkish-backed Government of the National Accord (GNA). Turkey held meetings with GNA officials and Malta on Monday.Turkey is pouring military hardware and Syrian refugees it armed and trained to fight into Libya. It has cynically exploited poor Syrians, encouraging them to adopt the Muslim Brotherhood brand of views that Turkey’s ruling AK Party holds, while viewing Libya as part of a regional struggle. Turkey views the Egyptian-backed LNA as “warlords,” and both sides call each other “terrorists.”Turkey has played a major role in Libya since November 2019, when it signed an energy deal with the GNA. It then sent drones to Libya and sought to push back the LNA. The LNA, with UAE and Egyptian support, tacit backing from France and help from Russian mercenaries, tried to take Tripoli in December and January. The LNA overstepped its supply routes and was badly defeated in May, when the GNA, with Turkish drones, took back al-Watiya airbase.The GNA and Turkey want to grab Sirte on the coast and the Jufra airbase in the interior of the country. Egypt said this was a redline in June. That is a gauntlet, and Turkey is wondering if it should pick it up.Turkey also has launched an offensive in northern Iraq, threatened a new offensive in Syria and is offering to aid Azerbaijan to fight Armenia. This means Turkey’s larger ambitions are to control parts of Syria, Libya and Iraq and have bases in Qatar, Somalia and elsewhere. Turkey is reopening Hagia Sophia museum as a mosque, part of an attempt to rebrand itself as inheritor of the Ottoman Empire, according to some critics.Sisi in Egypt is dealing with a dam dispute with Ethiopia and doesn’t want to send Egypt’s massive army into Libya. Instead, he has sought to show strength while biding his time. He has asked the LNA leader, Gen. Khalifa Haftar, to come for meetings. He also invited Libyan tribes and hosted Jordan’s top diplomats to discuss the Libya crisis.With the backing of Riyadh, Abu Dhabi and Greece, Egypt must now decide. The government wants a mandate from parliament. This is playing for time. It may consult Russia and France. Turkey has held a meeting with Italy. There is also a crisis in Tunisia.All eyes are thus on Sisi as to his next move. His approach toward Trump is a last attempt to find a diplomatic solution. Egypt does not seek humiliation on the battlefield for its allies or a Turkish force on its doorstep supporting extremism.