The Muslim Brotherhood’s regional and global threat

Yoram Ettinger

The Muslim Brotherhood’s regional and global threat

Will the U.S. administration post-Nov. 3 maintain its understanding of the threat the brotherhood poses to every moderate Arab regime in the Middle East and North Africa?

Yoram Ettinger

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(November 2, 2020 / JNS) Will the next U.S. administration sustain the realization that the clear and present threat of the transnational Muslim Brotherhood to every moderate Arab regime in the Middle East and North Africa (second only to the threat posed by Iran’s ayatollahs) has been a key incentive for the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain to conclude the U.S.-backed peace accords with Israel?

Will the next U.S. administration acknowledge the role played by Muslim Brotherhood subversion and terrorism in Saudi Arabia’s decision to expand security and commercial cooperation with Israel?

According to Professor Albert Hourani, a leading Middle East historian at Oxford University’s St. Anthony’s College (A History of the Arab Peoples, pp. 445-46), among the tenets of the Muslim Brotherhood are “total rejection of all forms of society except the wholly Islamic one.”

The brotherhood, he writes, believes that “the leadership of Western man in the human world is coming to an end … because the Western order has played its part, and no longer possesses that stock of values which gave it its predominance. … The turn of Islam has come.” Subscribe to The JNS Daily Syndicate by email and never miss our top stories

The Muslim Brotherhood is the largest Islamic terror organization in the world—supported mostly by Turkey’s Erdoğan, Iran’s ayatollahs and Qatar—with political branches throughout the globe (including in the United States).

Its aim is to rid the Arab world of Western “infidel” influence (which drew the current map of the Middle East), topple existing Arab regimes in a subversive and revolutionary manner, Islamize Arab societies, establish a “Divinely ordained” pan-Islamic regime and spread Islam through violence/terrorism, as well as via political and organizational involvement (e.g., the Freedom and Justice Party in Libya, the ruling Ennahdha Party in Tunisia, the Justice and Development Party in Morocco, the recently dissolved Islamic Action Front in Jordan, the Islamic Constitutional Movement in Kuwait, Jamaat-e-Islami in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh and the Welfare Party of India).

The Muslim Brotherhood maintains that the only legitimate rule is Islam-based rule. Moreover, Arab regimes that are not based on the sharia (the precepts of Islam) are considered to be apostates and therefore targets for jihad (martyrdom for Islam).

The Muslim Brotherhood was founded in 1928 in Egypt by Hassan al-Banna and participated in the offensive against the British-backed monarchy there. However, since the toppling of the monarchy in 1952, the Muslim Brotherhood—assisted by Palestinian leaders—has been engaged in domestic, regional and global jihad against all secular Arab regimes (e.g., Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain) as prescribed by the teachings of Sayyid Qutb (who was hanged in Egypt in 1966), inspiring a multitude of Islamic terror organizations such as Al-Qaeda and Hamas, while condemning Arab corruption and inequality and providing social and charity services.

In 1949, the Muslim Brotherhood assassinated Egyptian Prime Minister Mahmoud Nuqrashi. In 1954, the brotherhood failed in its attempt to murder Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser, but in 1981, its offshoot, the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, murdered Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. The Islamic Jihad merged with Al-Qaeda, terrorized U.S. and Israeli targets and formed a political party (the Freedom and Justice Party) during the 2011-2013 Muslim Brotherhood rule of Egypt, which was supported by the U.S. administration.

In 2020, the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist and political branches—bearing innocent titles—seek to subvert, terrorize and topple every moderate, pro-U.S. Arab regime, proliferating all over the globe, including South, Central and North America.

According to professor Fouad Ajami, one of the leading experts on Arab politics and director of Middle East Studies at Johns Hopkins University (The Arab Predicament, Cambridge University Press, 1992), the Muslim Brotherhood espouses “the struggle of the Prophet [Muhammad], the integrity of Islam, the need for sacrifice, [and] the clash between the world of Islam and the Jews, who will never abandon their belief that they are God’s chosen people” (p. 134).

Professor Albert Hourani (ibid., pp. 445-46) adds: “Those who accepted [the Muslim Brotherhood] program would form a vanguard of dedicated fighters, using every means, including Jihad … to destroy all worship of false gods and remove all the obstacles which prevented men from accepting Islam. The struggle should aim at creating a universal Muslim society in which there were no distinctions of race, and one which was worldwide. The Western age is finished. … Only Islam offered hope to the world. … [The Muslim Brotherhood] were prepared for violence and martyrdom.”

Will the next U.S. administration recognize the threat of Islamic terrorism to global stability, including U.S. homeland security?

Will it sustain the current U.S. support of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and additional Arab countries in the Middle East and North Africa in their battle against the lethal threat posed by the Muslim Brotherhood?

Will the next U.S. administration persist in the financial and military pressure of Iran’s ayatollahs, who have been a critical epicenter of global proliferation of Islamic terrorism (including to South and Central America) and a major supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood?

Will the next U.S. administration codify the repudiation of Islamic terrorism by outlawing the Muslim Brotherhood and its political and social offshoots such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Muslim American Society and the Islamic Society of North America?

Yoram Ettinger is a former ambassador and head of Second Thought: A U.S.-Israel Initiative.

This article was first published by The Ettinger Report.

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