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Why Saleh resorted to lying is further telling: his opponent was armed with facts, which always beat sophistry. For example, when Saleh began arguing that a Brotherhood-led government for Egypt would be wonderful for Coptic Christians, Montaser proceeded to read from a number of fatwas issued by the Brotherhood’s former grand mufti, Abdullah al-Khatib—fatwas asserting that it is forbidden to build new churches in Egypt, that in certain situations it is obligatory for Muslims to destroy churches—a regular occurrence in Egypt—and that it is forbidden to bury Christians in Muslim cemeteries, “lest they [the Muslims] suffer from the Christian’s torments of the grave.”
Incidentally, Saleh is the same Brotherhood leader who was portrayed affectionately in the New York Times: “He is a distinguished 57, clean-shaven, with white hair, wearing an orange sweater and black flip-flops. He has a leopard tissue cozy: not a leopard-print container, but what looks like a toy stuffed animal around his tissue box…. He is immediately engaging, the kind of person you shake hands with at a conference then find yourself telling people, ‘He’s such a nice guy,’ without really knowing why.”
Why, indeed. Probably because he is a master at letting people hear what they want to hear, especially in English. (Watch Saleh as he leads an Egyptian mob chanting intolerant Islamist slogans and calling for the implementation of Sharia, and somehow he won’t appear like “such a nice guy.”)
Thus, as the U.S. director of national intelligence foolishly describes the Brotherhood as “a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence,” and as President Obama asks Israel to make concessions to similar organizations, one must ask:
If top Islamist leaders have no problem lying about silly things to fellow Muslims—while swearing to God—how trustworthy are any of their words and promises to Western and Israeli leaders, that is, the hated infidels?
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