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Underlying all of this is a total lack of understanding by the Obama administration of what the Muslim Brotherhood actually believes, or worse, a case of “willful blindness.”
Another example of this was an invitation issued from the Oval Office by President Obama to meet with Mohammad Morsi. The rapidity with which the invitation was extended, just after the Egyptian elections, even as the elected Muslim Brotherhood President and the Egyptian military continue to maneuver to determine the extent of presidential power, is representative of the support the Obama administration is willing to give the Muslim Brotherhood. It shows the extent to which they clearly regard the Muslim Brotherhood as a respectable, legitimate institution, and the democratically elected leaders of Egypt.
We are certain that the Obama administration is fully aware that their views of the Brotherhood are most emphatically not shared by most Americans. In an example of “mother knows best,” a survey of American mothers conducted by the Tarrance Group in 2011 showed that just 16% of American moms believed that the U.S. should negotiate with the Muslim Brotherhood.
Those who would attempt to argue that while “they may not like the Brotherhood” the Obama administration has “no choice” but to deal with them, are missing two fundamental points:
1.) Far from “not liking” the Brotherhood, the Obama administration has gone out of its way to ensure a Brotherhood victory. It was the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, after all, that was invited to Washington and met with key White House staff. No such invitation was extended to any of the smaller struggling liberal parties who might have benefited from Washington’s embrace. And according to sources with contacts in Egypt, it is widely believed within the Egyptian security services that SCAF was warned by the U.S. against announcing victory for their preferred candidate Ahmed Shafiq. Shafiq has since fled the country.
2.) The Muslim Brotherhood simply cannot be regarded as one of any number of legitimate political parties who have successfully been elected, and thus must be met with, regardless of minor differences in political interests. Formed in 1928, only four years after Hitler took over command of the Nazi party, the Muslim Brotherhood is by its very nature a conspiratorial and totalitarian party, entirely dedicated to seizing power and implementing their ideology of political Islam and rule by Sharia law. Those who have read its chief ideologue Sayyid Qutb’s key work, Milestones, will tell you that it reads more like an organizational memo of the COMINTERN then it does a religious document. It is first and foremost a work describing the formation and training of revolutionary cadres for the eventually seizing of political power, although this intent is expressed in religious language. The mere fact that the Muslim Brotherhood has participated, and won, fairly or unfairly, the Egyptian election is irrelevant. As Qutb writes,
Islam possesses sufficient flexibility to enter into any system and mold that system according to its purposes; but this flexibility in the outward forms of Islamic civilization does not mean any flexibility in the Islamic belief, which is the fountainhead of this civilization, nor is it to be considered as borrowed from outside, for it is the character of this religion. However, flexibility is not to be confused with fluidity. There is a great difference between these two.
Nor has there been any deviation from these principles in the 84 years in which the Muslim Brotherhood has been in existence. It can be instituted in stages, or phases, but the basic principles of the Brotherhood do not change. Deputy Guide to the Muslim Brotherhood, Khairat al-Shater, expressed in clear terms that the Brotherhood has not altered itself one iota from the original principles established in 1928. In March of 2011, al-Shater was recorded giving a key address regarding the Brotherhood’s efforts to date:
Naturally, Constants are not subject to developing, hanging, addition or omission; only Variables are. You all know that our main and overall mission as Muslim Brothers is to empower God’s Religion on Earth, to organize our life and the lives of people on the basis of Islam, to establish the Nahda [Renaissance] of the Ummah and its civilization on the basis of Islam, and to subjugation of people to God on Earth.
There is absolutely no obligation in American policy or principles to honor, with high profile public meetings, organizations which fully express their intention to “subjugate.” This is especially true when they are openly understood to use any talks on your part in order to enter into and mold your system according to their purposes. Sadly, it is now widely understood by terrorists and totalitarians of all stripes that with the thinnest veneer of democratic pretensions the United States will treat you with the same recognition and respect which it grants Britain or France. This isn’t to suggest that the Muslim Brotherhood can be ignored. It is now, thanks in large part to the Arab Spring and Obama administration policies, a major player in the region, and it must be recognized as such. But it should be greeted with distrust and distaste, as previous totalitarian parties have been. It would be a worthwhile maxim for this administration, and indeed all future administrations, that if you are embarrassed enough by the party you are embracing that you’d prefer to dissemble to the American people about it, then perhaps you shouldn’t be embracing them to begin with.
Unfortunately, the current administration is willfully blinding themselves to the facts of what Islamism really means.
As Sir Winston Churchill once said, “He who appeases the crocodile is only eaten last.”
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