(/sites/default/files/uploads/2012/04/6a013487f321e0970c014e88009d73970d-800wi.gif)Editor’s note: The following news items from Arabic media related to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt were first translated and interpreted by Shillman Journalism Fellow Raymond Ibrahim.
Muslim Brotherhood Calls for a ‘United Arab States’ with Jerusalem as its Capital
Once again, we see how Western concepts, when articulated through an Islamic framework, lead to results antithetical to the West. For instance, “democracy” and “elections”—which in the West suggest “freedom,” “human rights,” “liberty,” etc.—are today being used to bring Sharia law, the antithesis of Western law, to power.
In this recent video, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Dr. Safwat Hegazy, a popular preacher, talks about how he yearns to see Arab nations become “like the United States”—for them to unify into the “United Arab States.“ While that may sound like an admirable (or at least neutral) goal, bear in mind what he is alluding to: the resurrection of a caliphate—which by nature exists to expand, including through jihad.
Moreover, Hegazy made clear that his interest in seeing the “United Arab States” has less to do with Arab solidarity (nationalism) and more to do with Islamic allegiance (religion). As he gushed about how wonderful it would be for Arab nations to unite into one bloc, the secular and skeptical host interviewing him reluctantly agreed, “so long as the capital is Cairo,” that is, so long as Egypt’s integrity remains.
To this, Hegazy replied: “No, I say the capital is Jerusalem, Allah willing.”
Thus, just as that sacrosanct word “democracy” is being abused to establish fascist rule in the Muslim world, so too is the notion of a “United Arab States” fraught with problems—from the elimination of Israel to the establishment of an expansionist caliphate on its remains.
Muslim Brotherhood: Only ‘Drunks, Druggies and Adulterers’ Reject Sharia
At a conference attended by some 5,000, senior Muslim Brotherhood leader, Dr. Essam el-Erian, Vice President of the “Freedom and Justice” party, the Brotherhood’s political wing, declared that “No one in Egypt—not a Copt, a liberal, a leftist, no one—dares say they are against Islam and the application of Sharia: all say they want the Islamic Sharia [applied]. And when referendum time comes, whoever says ‘we do not want Sharia’ will expose their hidden intentions.”
He went on to threaten Egypt’s Supreme Council of Armed Forces with “massacres” if it interfered in politics and Islam’s role in the constitution and addressed the nation’s Coptic Christians as follows: “You will never find a strong fortress for your faith and rights except in Islam and Sharia,” adding, “Our Lord has commanded us to be just, and we have learned it from Islam. We do not wish to hurt anyone…”
More to the point, his Brotherhood colleague, Sheikh Sayyid Abdul Karim, asserted: “Those who do not wish to see Islam [Sharia] applied are drunks, druggies, adulterers, and brothel-owners.”
While such talk is commonplace from Egypt’s self-styled Salafists, here is yet another indicator that the Brotherhood, which has long mastered the art of dissembling, is beginning to feel comfortable enough to let snippets of the truth come out.
Popular Egyptian Presidential Candidate: ‘Sharia Must be Applied’
At a recent conference, Dr. Abd al-Mun’im Abu al-Futuh—one of the most popular presidential candidates in Egypt, of the Muslim Brotherhood’s “Freedom and Justice” party—declared that “Islam must be upheld and Sharia must be applied; nor shall we permit the methods of the former regime—imprisoning our sons simply because they are committed to religion [Islam] and because they go and pray at mosques—to ever return again.”
To the average Western reader, this smacks of religious freedom—until one realizes why the former regime, and all secular Arab regimes, are wary of those Muslims “committed to religion,” who “pray at mosques”: the more zealous they are of Islam’s teachings, the more likely they are to espouse violence, even terror (under the banner of “jihad”), the more likely they are to target anyone and everyone who stands in their way, including the “near enemy” (the state, if it is secular), the “far enemy” (the Western infidel), and everyone in between (“dhimmi” minorities such as Egypt’s Christian Copts).
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