I thought that was what I was trying to say, Anthony. But let me be plain in response to you: I never believed the Egyptian expedition was anything other than the rather inane "preemptive strike" idea against the British overland route to India and the Directory's idea to remove Bonaparte from France to diminish his post-Italian campaign popularity. I also never bought the idea, if it really existed, that Bonaparte and the French army had any intention to protect anyone, indigenous or otherwise--the intent was to conquer and subdue whoever protested by whatever means, and to study ancient Egypt. At the end of the day, the studies, to include the Rosetta Stone, now safely in the British Library, were the only positive outcomes.
So if there was--or is--a dichotomy between an intention to "purportedly protect the indigenous Egyptian population" and the atrocities committed in Cairo, I must have missed it because who really believed, then or now, that the French army was in Egypt to do anything but conquer it? If anyone does believe that, then I guess he or she also believes the Belgians meant only to help the indigenous populations of the Congo, or the British only meant to bring enlightenment to Ceylon and elsewhere.