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Then there was the delirious welcome accorded the Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual father, the Egyptian Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi. In February one of the biggest and most enthusiastic crowds of the entire Egyptian revolution thronged to Cairo’s Tahrir Square to hear Qaradawi, who outdoes even the most Hitlerian Islamic clerics in his Jew-hatred and bloodlust. Former London Mayor Ken Livingstone welcomed Qaradawi to the city in 2004 and praised him repeatedly; during that visit Qaradawi explained to the BBC that suicide attacks against Israelis did not actually constitute suicide at all, but rather “martyrdom in the name of God.” In January 2009, during a Friday sermon broadcast on Al Jazeera, he prayed that Allah would kill all the Jews: “Oh Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish, Zionist band of people. Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one.” He also declared: “Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the people [Jews] who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler.”
That is the man who, by the record of the welcome Egyptians gave him in Tahrir Square that day, best embodies the spirit of the “Arab Spring.”
And so last week the Tunisian Muslim Brotherhood leader Rachid Ghannouchi was much more perspicacious than Western analysts when he predicted that the “Arab Spring” would lead to the destruction of Israel. For every day brings new advances toward power in Egypt by the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic supremacist groups allied with it. Once they finally attain that power, there is no indication whatsoever that they have any inclination to keep the peace with Israel that has prevailed, however uneasily, for the last thirty years; indeed, there is abundant indication to the contrary.
The Rafah crossing is just the beginning. Watch for more belligerence from Egypt toward Israel, and more Egyptian moves that redound to the benefit of Hamas. After all, Hamas styles itself in its charter as the Muslim Brotherhood for Palestine; why wouldn’t its sister organization in Egypt be interested in lending it a helping hand? And as it does so, it inches the Middle East and the world ever closer to the inevitable conflagration.
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