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Corporatism and the Muslim Brotherhood


Hamas (Pales­tin­ian Mus­lim Broth­er­hood) Sol­diers Salut­ing

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained here. [2] (The flash dri­ve includes the anti-fas­cist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT: For many years, we have cov­ered the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood [3], an Islam­ic fas­cist orga­ni­za­tion allied with the Axis in World War II and nur­tured by ele­ments of West­ern intel­li­gence dur­ing the Cold War as anti-com­mu­nist cadre.

They have functioned–and con­tin­ue to function–as foot sol­diers for the Under­ground Reich. The German/Islamist alliance is old and con­tin­ues to this day. [4]

We have also cov­ered the pro­found rela­tion­ship between the GOP and the Broth­er­hood [5], man­i­fest­ed in the alliance between the Ikhwan and Grover Norquist and Karl Rove’s Islam­ic Free Mar­ket Insti­tute [6]. (The lat­ter ele­ments were cen­tral­ly involved in the insti­tu­tions tar­get­ed in the inves­ti­ga­tion into ter­ror­ist fund­ing under Oper­a­tion Green Quest.)

As the main­stream press and the so-called pro­gres­sive sec­tor were falling all over them­selves hail­ing the “Arab Spring,” [7] we not­ed that Wik­iLeaks-assist­ed covert oper­a­tion was designed to bring “cor­po­ratism” to the Mus­lim World. (Mus­soli­ni called his fas­cist sys­tem “cor­po­ratism.”)

In Jan­u­ary 2012, Salon.com [8] pub­lished a very reveal­ing piece that pret­ty much lays it all out. The only flaw in the arti­cle is its down­play­ing of the endem­ic vio­lence which char­ac­ter­izes the Brotherhood–Al-Qaeda, Hamas and Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad are off­shoots of the Broth­er­hood.

While perus­ing this, do exam­ine a pre­vi­ous post on theo­crat­ic free-mar­ket cap­i­tal­ism [9] (fea­tur­ing an impor­tant update since first pub­lished.)

As the fas­cist regime of Mohamed Mor­si sings its swan song, it is worth con­tem­plat­ing the nature of the forces embod­ied in it.

“The GOP Broth­er­hood of Egypt” by Avi Ash­er-Schapiro; Salon.com; 1/25/2012. [8]

EXCERPT: While West­ern alarmists often depict Egypt’s Mus­lim Broth­er­hood as a shad­owy orga­ni­za­tion with ter­ror­ist ties, the Brotherhood’s ide­ol­o­gy actu­al­ly has more in com­mon with America’s Repub­li­can Par­ty than with al-Qai­da. Few Amer­i­cans know it but the Broth­er­hood is a free-mar­ket par­ty led by wealthy busi­ness­men whose eco­nom­ic agen­da embraces pri­va­ti­za­tion and for­eign invest­ment while spurn­ing labor unions and the redis­tri­b­u­tion of wealth. Like the Repub­li­cans in the U.S., the finan­cial inter­ests of the party’s lead­er­ship of busi­ness­men and pro­fes­sion­als diverge sharply from those of its poor, social­ly con­ser­v­a­tive fol­low­ers.

The Broth­er­hood, which did not ini­tial­ly sup­port the rev­o­lu­tion that began a year ago, reaped its ben­e­fits, cap­tur­ing near­ly half the seats in the new par­lia­ment, which was seat­ed this week, and vault­ing its top lead­ers into posi­tions of pow­er.

Arguably the most pow­er­ful man in the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood is Khairat Al-Shater, a mul­ti­mil­lion­aire tycoon whose finan­cial inter­ests extend into elec­tron­ics, man­u­fac­tur­ing and retail. A strong advo­cate of pri­va­ti­za­tion, Al-Shater is one of a cadre of Mus­lim Broth­er­hood busi­ness­men who helped finance the Brotherhood’s Free­dom and Jus­tice Party’s impres­sive elec­toral vic­to­ry this win­ter and is now craft­ing the FJP’s eco­nom­ic agen­da.

At Al-Shater’s lux­u­ry fur­ni­ture out­let Istak­bal, a new couch costs about 6,000 Egypt­ian pounds, about $1,000 in U.S. cur­ren­cy. In a coun­try where 40 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion lives on less than $2 a day, Istakbal’s clien­tele is large­ly lim­it­ed to Egypt’s upper class­es.

Although the Broth­ers do draw sig­nif­i­cant sup­port from Egypt’s poor and work­ing class, “the Broth­er­hood is a firm­ly upper-mid­dle-class orga­ni­za­tion in its lead­er­ship,” says Sha­di Hamid, a lead­ing Mus­lim Broth­er­hood expert at the Brook­ings Insti­tu­tion in Wash­ing­ton.

Not sur­pris­ing­ly, these well-to-do Egyp­tians are eager to safe­guard their eco­nom­ic posi­tion in the post-Mubarak Egypt. Despite ris­ing eco­nom­ic inequal­i­ty and pover­ty, the Broth­er­hood does not back rad­i­cal changes in Egypt’s econ­o­my.

The FJP’s eco­nom­ic plat­form is a tame doc­u­ment, rife with promis­es to root out cor­rup­tion and tweak Egypt’s tax and sub­si­dies sys­tems, with occa­sion­al allu­sions to an unspe­cif­ic com­mit­ment to “social jus­tice.” The plat­form prais­es the mech­a­nisms of the free mar­ket and promis­es that the par­ty will work for “bal­anced, sus­tain­able and com­pre­hen­sive eco­nom­ic devel­op­ment.” It is a pro­gram that any Euro­pean con­ser­v­a­tive par­ty could get behind. . . .