Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #540 Moderates Like Us

Record­ed Feb­ru­ary 5, 2006

Lis­ten: MP3 Side 1  Side 2


Intro­duc­tion: In late 2005 and ear­ly 2006, the Islam­o­fas­cist Mus­lim Broth­er­hood scored sig­nif­i­cant elec­toral suc­cess­es in Egypt and in the Pales­tin­ian ter­ri­to­ries. Rep­re­sent­ing itself as “mod­er­ate” and “demo­c­ra­t­ic,” the Broth­er­hood has enjoyed the encomi­ums of an amen cho­rus in parts of the West. A polit­i­cal ally of Nazi Ger­many and Mussolini’s Italy dur­ing World War II, the Broth­er­hood is, in fact, an Islam­ic fas­cist orga­ni­za­tion. The par­ent orga­ni­za­tion of Al Qae­da, the Broth­er­hood has retained all of its fas­cist char­ac­ter, behind its “mod­er­ate” façade. In this pro­gram we exam­ine the orga­ni­za­tion­al struc­ture, oper­a­tional strat­e­gy and religious/philosophical roots of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, rely­ing in large mea­sure on an excel­lent analy­sis of that orga­ni­za­tion devel­oped by the Air War Col­lege. Mask­ing its total­i­tar­i­an pro­gram and ambi­tions behind noble rhetoric, the Broth­er­hood per­verts Islam­ic doc­trine to its own ends. Uti­liz­ing Islam’s manda­to­ry char­i­ta­ble func­tions to gain pop­u­lar­i­ty in the large­ly impov­er­ished Mus­lim world, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood strives to trans­late its char­i­ty work into elec­toral suc­cess at the polls. When that fails, the same char­i­ta­ble NGO’s that are the vehi­cles for alms giv­ing dou­ble as ter­ror­ist fund­ing con­duits. Cen­tral to the Brotherhood’s mil­i­tary and ter­ror­ist oper­a­tions is a philo­soph­i­cal per­ver­sion of the Islam­ic con­cept of “jihad,” which is [in its orig­i­nal mean­ing and intent] peace­ful. Pur­pose­ly vague in its enun­ci­a­tion of specifics, the Brotherhood’s polit­i­cal vision is pred­i­cat­ed on a myth­i­cal, ide­al­ized con­cep­tion of Islam’s past.

Pro­gram High­lights Include: The Bush administration’s “demo­c­ra­t­ic” agen­da, which is putting the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and oth­er Islam­o­fas­cists in pow­er in the Mid­dle East; the pri­ma­ry role of for­eign expa­tri­ates in Broth­er­hood oper­a­tions around the world; the Brotherhood’s great suc­cess in using civic and con­sti­tu­tion­al pro­tec­tions afford­ed by Amer­i­can democ­ra­cy to enhance its ter­ror­ist oper­a­tions; the Brotherhood’s efforts at ban­ning the dis­tri­b­u­tion of fem­i­nine san­i­tary nap­kins at women’s high schools in Egypt; the label­ing of the Holo­caust as a myth by the head of the Brotherhood’s Egypt­ian branch; the Brotherhood’s influ­ence on Aya­tol­lah Khome­i­ni of Iran; the influ­ence of Mussolini’s “squadristi” on the Pak­istani branch of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood.

1. Begin­ning dis­cus­sion of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the broad­cast notes that the Broth­er­hood has essen­tial­ly become the tem­plate for polit­i­cal Islam. After elec­toral suc­cess­es in Egypt and Pales­tine, the Broth­er­hood is cul­ti­vat­ing an image as a “mod­er­ate” orga­ni­za­tion. Just how “mod­er­ate” this fas­cist group is will be seen in the con­clud­ing por­tion of the pro­gram. For more about the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and its his­to­ry, see—among oth­er pro­grams—FTR#’s 343, 455, 456, 473, 537. Note that Hamas is the main Pales­tin­ian branch of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood.

“ . . . The Broth­er­hood has long been the mod­el for Islam­ic polit­i­cal move­ments and has close ties with the Islam­ic Resis­tance Move­ment, or Hamas, which won last week’s Pales­tin­ian leg­isla­tive elec­tions. Though the Broth­er­hood for­mal­ly renounces vio­lence in Egypt, it pro­vides out­spo­ken sup­port for Hamas’s armed cam­paign against Israel’s occu­pa­tion of the West Bank. In Egypt, the Broth­er­hood has tried to quick­ly posi­tion itself as a main­stream reform par­ty. . . .”

(“Egypt’s Mus­lim Broth­er­hood May Be Mod­el for Islam’s Polit­i­cal Adap­ta­tion” by Daniel Williams; The Wash­ing­ton Post; 2/3/2006; p. A14.)

2. In the wake of the Brotherhood’s elec­toral suc­cess­es, the U.S. is appar­ent­ly con­sid­er­ing open­ing up dis­course with these “mod­er­ates.”

“The Unit­ed States has sig­naled the pos­si­bil­i­ty of mak­ing con­tact with mem­bers of Egypt’s banned Mus­lim Broth­er­hood after the oppo­si­tion group’s stun­ning suc­cess in par­lia­men­tary polls. Wash­ing­ton has refused to acknowl­edge the Islamist organization’s strong show­ing, rec­og­niz­ing only that an unprece­dent­ed num­ber of ‘inde­pen­dents’ had won despite wide­spread vio­lence and intim­i­da­tion. But a senior State Depart­ment offi­cial sug­gest­ed US offi­cials might be in touch with vic­to­ri­ous mem­bers of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, which has emerged as a key play­er in Egypt­ian pol­i­tics even if it is not a for­mal par­ty. ‘I would expect us to meet with the inde­pen­dent can­di­dates,’ said the offi­cial, who spoke to reporters on con­di­tion of anonymi­ty. The 77-year-old Broth­er­hood, which has renounced past ties to vio­lence and is still tol­er­at­ed in Egypt, shocked Cairo by tak­ing 88 of 444 par­lia­men­tary seats at stake in the month-long elec­tions that wound up on Wednes­day. Deputy State Depart­ment spokesman Adam Ere­li said the Unit­ed States would respect Egypt­ian law pro­hibit­ing con­tacts with the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood as an orga­ni­za­tion. . . . .”

(“US Seeks Con­tact with Broth­er­hood” Busi­ness in Africa; 12/09/2005.)

3. Next, the pro­gram high­lights the view of Bush admin­is­tra­tion crit­ics that the “democ­ra­ti­za­tion poli­cies” advo­cat­ed by “W” are coun­ter­pro­duc­tive for the Unit­ed States and ben­e­fi­cial to its ene­mies. It is Mr. Emory’s con­sid­ered view­point that Bush’s admin­is­tra­tion is a front for the Under­ground Reich, and that the archi­tects of the “democ­ra­ti­za­tion” process delib­er­ate­ly intend a Broth­er­hood ascen­dance in the Mus­lim world as part of their geopo­lit­i­cal strat­e­gy. (Mr. Emory views Bush per­son­al­ly as a fig­ure­head, not the gen­er­a­tor of the poli­cies for which he is the spokesman.) Note that the Repub­li­can Par­ty is a repos­i­to­ry for per­son­nel select­ed by Helene Von Damm, a pro­tégé of SS Mid­dle East expert and CIA oper­a­tive Otto Von Bolschwing. Von Bolschwing was an archi­tect of the Third Reich’s poli­cies in the Mid­dle East, view­ing sup­port for Jew­ish immi­gra­tion as a vehi­cle for gen­er­at­ing Arab sym­pa­thy for the Nazis and hos­til­i­ty on the part of the Arab pop­u­la­tion toward nations demon­strat­ing sup­port for Zion­ism. For more about Von Bolschwing, see FTR#’s 332, 399, 465. FTR#399 high­lights Von Bolschwing’s Machi­avel­lian view of the util­i­ty of Zion­ist immi­gra­tion for the Nazi cause.

“The Bush administration’s strat­e­gy of pro­mot­ing democ­ra­cy around the world is under fire from crit­ics who say it is not only utopi­an but advances the inter­ests of America’s adver­si­ties. In par­tic­u­lar, they say, it has pro­duced strik­ing gains for Islamists rather than sec­u­lar mod­er­ates in recent elec­tions in the Mid­dle East. In the wake of the progress of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood in Egypt and the rel­a­tive fail­ure of sec­u­lar par­ties in Iraq, the mil­i­tant group Hamas—outlawed in the US as a ter­ror­ist group—appears poised to do well in Pales­tin­ian leg­isla­tive elec­tions on Jan­u­ary 25. Nonethe­less, Pres­i­dent George W. Bush shows lit­tle sign of retreat­ing from the prin­ci­ples he laid out in his sec­ond inau­gur­al address a year ago. Invok­ing God, he said that end­ing tyran­ny world­wide reflect­ed the uni­ty of ‘America’s vital inter­ests and our deep­est beliefs.’ . . .”

(“Crit­ics of ‘Utopi­an’ For­eign Pol­i­cy Fail to Weak­en Bush Resolve” by Guy Din­more; The Finan­cial Times; 1/13/2006; p. 6.)

4. In FTR#537 (among oth­er pro­grams), we exam­ined the fas­cist ide­ol­o­gy and her­itage of the “mod­er­ate” Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. This pro­gram sup­ple­ments that dis­cus­sion with infor­ma­tion about the Brotherhood’s aping of fas­cist method­ol­o­gy in post-World War II Pak­istan:

“ . . . In Pak­istan [Mus­lim Broth­er­hood chief Said] Ramadan worked close­ly with a young Islamist named Abul-Ala Maw­du­di, who had found­ed a Mus­lim Broth­er­hood-style move­ment called the Islam­ic Soci­ety. Just as he had recruit­ed angry young Mus­lims to take up arms in Pales­tine, so Ramadan helped Maw­du­di mold a mus­cu­lar pha­lanx of fanat­i­cal Islam­ic stu­dents into a bat­ter­ing ram against Pakistan’s left. Known by its Urdu ini­tials as the IJT and mod­eled on Mussolini’s squadristi, the group deployed its often-armed thugs to do bat­tle with left-wing stu­dents on cam­pus. ‘Egg toss­ing grad­u­al­ly gave way to more seri­ous clash­es, espe­cial­ly in Karachi,’ writes Seyyed Vali Reza Nast, a lead­ing expert on the move­ment. In the process, the IJT trained the gen­er­a­tion of rad­i­cals who seized con­trol of Pak­istan in 1977 under the far-right dic­ta­tor Gen­er­al Zia ul-Haq, spon­sored the jihad in Afghanistan, shel­tered Al Qae­da, and even today rep­re­sents a threat to Gen­er­al Per­vez Musharraf’s shaky regime. . . .”

(“Cold War, Holy War­rior” by Robert Drey­fuss; Moth­er Jones; January/February 2006; p. 57.)

5. Much of the pro­gram con­sists of read­ing and analy­sis of one of the best pieces ever writ­ten about the Mus­lim Brotherhood–a report on the orga­ni­za­tion writ­ten for the Air War Col­lege cur­ricu­lum [at Matthews Air Force Base]. The report under­scores the organization’s atavis­tic nature—it is pre­oc­cu­pied with a mythol­o­gized past and intends a return to a state of affairs based on that mythol­o­gy. In the case of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, an ide­al­ized and mythol­o­gized vision of the Caliphate is the pre­dom­i­nant con­cept in its polit­i­cal pro­gram.

“ . . . Bard E. O’Neill, in his book Insur­gency & Ter­ror­ism: Inside Modem Rev­o­lu­tion­ary War­fare, clas­si­fied the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood as a ‘reac­tionary-tra­di­tion­al­ist’ type of insur­gency because of their insis­tence on the strict adher­ence to ancient reli­gious cus­toms, tra­di­tions, and prac­tices. O’Neill states, ‘Tra­di­tion­al­ist insur­gences also seek to dis­place the polit­i­cal sys­tem, but the val­ues they artic­u­late are pri­mor­dial and sacred ones, root­ed in ances­tral ties and reli­gion... With­in the cat­e­go­ry of tra­di­tion­al­ist insur­gents one also finds more zeal­ous groups seek­ing to reestab­lish an ancient polit­i­cal sys­tem that they ide­al­ized as a gold­en age.’ This descrip­tion applies to the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood con­sid­er­ing its avowed desire to reestab­lish Sharia law and the Caliphate. Sharia law is a com­pi­la­tion of sacred laws result­ing from iji­ma or con­sen­sus deci­sions by lead­ing Islam­ic schol­ars, qiyas or anal­o­gy rea­son­ing by judges, lawyers and schol­ars, the sun­na-hadith, and the Quran. The Caliphate was the reli­gious, mil­i­tary, and polit­i­cal struc­ture that gov­erned the Mus­lim peo­ple and lands after the death of the Prophet Muham­mad in A.D. 632. The caliph, or suc­ces­sor to the prophet, served as the ruler of the Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ty. . . While the title Caliph extend­ed to 1924, the actu­al influ­ence and con­trol of the entire Mus­lim world com­mu­ni­ty was min­i­mal after the thir­teenth cen­tu­ry. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s desire to see the return of the Caliphate rais­es sub­stan­tial ques­tions con­cern­ing their his­tor­i­cal point of ref­er­ence and def­i­n­i­tion of the Caliphate. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s desire to reestab­lish the Caliphate hinges more on pan-Arab revival­ism than on acknowl­edge­ment of the tur­bu­lent nature of the Caliphate fol­low­ing the first four Caliphs.”

(Trea­tise on the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood [from the cur­ricu­lum of the Air War Col­lege, Maxwell Air Force Base]; Chap­ter 3—“The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and Islam­ic Rad­i­cal­ism” by Gary M. Ser­vold; pp. 58–59.)

6. As we shall see, the Brotherhood’s agen­da embraces the goal of a world-wide, total­i­tar­i­an Mus­lim theocracy—a pro­gram that does not smack of “mod­er­a­tion.” This agen­da was artic­u­lat­ed by Broth­er­hood founder Has­san al-Ban­na, in an inter­view with John Roy Carl­son (con­duct­ed in the imme­di­ate after­math of World War II.) Cairo to Dam­as­cus—the book con­tain­ing the quote—is avail­able on the Spit­fire web­site at the URL post­ed at the top of this descrip­tion.

“ . . . I asked his [Al-Banna’s] views on estab­lish­ing the Caliphate, the com­plete merg­er of Church and State—the Moslem equiv­a­lent of reli­gious total­i­tar­i­an­ism, as in Spain. ‘We want an Ara­bi­an Unit­ed States with a Caliphate at its head and every Arab state sub­scrib­ing whole­heart­ed­ly to the laws of the Koran. . . . The laws of the Koran are suit­able for all men at all times to the end of the world.’ . . . I could not help mak­ing a men­tal note that the word ‘Chris­t­ian’ has been sim­i­lar­ly used and with sim­i­lar fanati­cism among West­ern expo­nents of author­i­tar­i­an­ism. . . .”

(Cairo to Dam­as­cus; John Roy Carl­son; Copy­right 1951 by John Roy Carl­son; Pub­lished by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.; ISBN 51–11068; p. 92.)

7. Next, the dis­cus­sion returns to infor­ma­tion from the Air War Col­lege doc­u­ment. One of the secrets of the Brotherhood’s suc­cess has been the organization’s suc­cess­ful mobi­liza­tion of social wel­fare pro­grams on its behalf. In the [large­ly] poor, dis­ad­van­taged Mus­lim world, these pro­grams are very influ­en­tial, because of the real relief they offer to their recip­i­ents. Act­ing through inter­na­tion­al NGO’s, these pro­grams trans­late into grass-roots elec­toral suc­cess at the polling places. As will be seen lat­er in the pro­gram, many of these NGO’s dou­ble as ter­ror­ist fund­ing con­duits. In FTR#455 (among oth­er pro­grams), we exam­ined the analy­sis of the Broth­er­hood as a “Far-Right cult.” In that con­text, note the cult-style ide­ol­o­gy and ver­biage of the Broth­er­hood doc­trine. Much of what it super­fi­cial­ly espous­es sounds good in its ini­tial man­i­fes­ta­tions, end­ing in the goal of “mas­ter­ing the world” through Islam.

“ . . . The Broth­er­hood uses a struc­ture of char­i­ta­ble non- gov­ern­men­tal orga­ni­za­tions to for­mal­ly pur­sue their youth, health, reli­gious, edu­ca­tion, and social wel­fare ser­vice pro­grams. They estab­lish small busi­ness­es and fac­to­ries to gen­er­ate income, employ mem­bers, and employ sym­pa­thiz­ers. The Broth­er­hood uses mem­ber­ship in for­mal pro­fes­sion­al orga­ni­za­tion and syn­di­cates as a vehi­cle to influ­ence the nation­al infra­struc­ture. The main objec­tives of the Broth­er­hood are: 1. Build­ing the Mus­lim indi­vid­ual: broth­er or sis­ter with a strong body, high man­ners, cul­tured thought, abil­i­ty to earn, strong faith, cor­rect wor­ship, con­scious of time, of ben­e­fit to oth­ers, orga­nized, and self-strug­gling char­ac­ter. 2. Build­ing the Mus­lim fam­i­ly: choos­ing a good wife (hus­band), edu­cat­ing chil­dren Islam­i­cal­ly, and invit­ing oth­er fam­i­lies. 3. Build­ing the Mus­lim soci­ety (through build­ing indi­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies) and address­ing the prob­lems of the soci­ety real­is­ti­cal­ly. 4. Build­ing the Mus­lim state. 5. Build­ing the Khi­lafa (basi­cal­ly a shape of uni­ty between the Islam­ic states). 6. Mas­ter­ing the world with Islam. . . .[Empha­sis added.]”

(Trea­tise on the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood [from the cur­ricu­lum of the Air War Col­lege, Maxwell Air Force Base]; Chap­ter 3—“The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and Islam­ic Rad­i­cal­ism” by Gary M. Ser­vold; pp. 56.)

8. Uti­liz­ing core prin­ci­ples of Islam­ic belief as an orga­ni­za­tion­al pil­lar for real­iz­ing their tem­po­ral polit­i­cal goals, the Broth­er­hood uses the mosque as a place for mem­bers to net­work, orga­nize and social­ize.

“The basic pil­lars or long-term plan of action of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood includes, first, the estab­lish­ment of Islam­ic Sharia law; sec­ond, estab­lish­ment of Mus­lim states; and third, the uni­fi­ca­tion of Mus­lim nations. These steps are direct­ly tied to their Islam­ic doc­trine. Like­wise, the Broth­er­hood’s objec­tives, goals, and fund­ing are also direct­ly relat­ed to Islam­ic doc­trine. The first and fore­most source of Islam­ic doc­trine is the Quran or Koran. Mus­lims believe the Quran is the infal­li­ble word of God revealed through divine rev­e­la­tions to the Prophet Muham­mad in the sev­enth cen­tu­ry A.D. The Quran iden­ti­fies five pil­lars of faith: Pro­fes­sion of Faith to Allah and his apos­tle, Prayer, Alms­giv­ing (zakat and sadaquat). Fast­ing, and Pil­grim­age (hajj). The Quran is orga­nized in chap­ters or suras that are revered as the recit­ed words of God. The suras con­sti­tute the basis for the rit­u­al prayers per­formed by devout Mus­lims five times a day. This pil­lar of the Mus­lim faith serves as a uni­fy­ing focal point for the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. Prayer at mosques built by the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood pro­vides a fre­quent forum for con­tact and pro­mul­ga­tion of their fun­da­men­tal­ist ide­ol­o­gy.”

(Ibid.; pp. 56–57.)

9. The paper notes that, in its ear­ly devel­op­ment, the phys­i­cal pres­ence of Mus­lim believ­ers in an envi­ron­ment pop­u­lat­ed with rival reli­gions and non-believ­ers man­dat­ed that the “umma”—believers—unify and solid­i­fy, par­tic­u­lar­ly in the face of phys­i­cal hos­til­i­ty. This ten­den­cy to band togeth­er becomes per­vert­ed by the Broth­er­hood and serves as a proto­fascis­tic uni­fy­ing ele­ment.

“The Quran is a ‘doc­trine of the absolute one­ness of God’ that ‘refers to, and is con­cerned with, three reli­gious groups: hea­thens, Jews, and Chris­tians.’ Since Islam’s incep­tion the ‘absolute one­ness’ and unyield­ing belief that the Quran express­es the lit­er­al words of God, served as a uni­fy­ing point for the com­mu­ni­ty of believ­ers or the umma. Liv­ing among rival reli­gions and hos­tile tribes neces­si­tat­ed a strong bond between like-mind­ed believ­ers. Phys­i­cal strug­gles with non-believ­ers forced Mus­lims to band togeth­er. While there are diver­gent sects and local vari­a­tions in the prac­tice of the Islam­ic faith, a clear dis­tinc­tion exists between believ­ers and non-believ­ers. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood cap­i­tal­izes on this uni­fy­ing force as an ide­ol­o­gy for the cre­ation of a greater Mus­lim state and Islam­ic world. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood exploits and pro­motes this com­mu­nal reli­gious uni­fi­ca­tion as a pro­tec­tion mea­sure, recruit­ing tool, and a call to arms for Mus­lims to defend their brethren through­out the world. It is this sense of reli­gious ide­o­log­i­cal uni­ty that mobi­lized the ‘Arab Afghans’ to fight the Sovi­ets in Afghanistan. From Bosnia to Sudan to Indone­sia to the Philip­pines, pro­tec­tion of the umma is a famil­iar call to arms for mil­i­tant Islam­ic fun­da­men­tal­ists and the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. The pro­tec­tion of the umma is tied to the Islam­ic con­cept of jihad.”

(Ibid.; p. 57.)

10. At the core of the Brotherhood’s proto­fascis­tic per­ver­sion of the con­cept of the umma is their dis­tor­tion and cyn­i­cal uti­liza­tion of the con­cept of jihad. A com­plex con­cept, jihad in its orig­i­nal con­cep­tion is peace­ful, entail­ing the strug­gle of the believ­er to real­ize the will of God through sub­mis­sion to that inher­ent­ly good call­ing. For the Broth­er­hood, jihad entails a chau­vin­is­tic, malev­o­lent and vio­lent course of action against those it calls its ene­mies.

“Jihad is a word that is dif­fi­cult to trans­late from Ara­bic to Eng­lish. Its best trans­la­tion is ‘a sin­cere and notice­able effort (for good); an all true and unselfish striv­ing for spir­i­tu­al good.’ Jihad is a mul­ti-dimen­sion­al con­cept with the pri­ma­ry focus on the indi­vid­ual. At the indi­vid­ual lev­el it is striv­ing to live a good life in accor­dance with the Quran, being just, per­form­ing right­eous deeds, pro­tect­ing people’s rights and free­doms, spread­ing the faith, and per­son­al­ly defend­ing the faith. It is about the individual’s spir­i­tu­al strug­gle for ‘sub­mis­sion’ (Eng­lish for Islam) to God’s will that is good and just, not evil.”


11. The Brotherhood’s mem­ber­ship is large, and the inter­na­tion­al dias­po­ra of Broth­er­hood mem­bers from the Mid­dle East has pro­vid­ed the foun­da­tion for the organization’s sub­sidiary NGO’s and aca­d­e­m­ic insti­tu­tions abroad.

“The struc­ture of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood is not wide­ly known out­side the mem­ber­ship of the orga­ni­za­tion for rea­sons of secu­ri­ty and self-preser­va­tion. While the exact num­ber of mem­bers is not known, there are oth­er indi­ca­tors of the mem­ber­ships’ rel­a­tive strength. In Egypt, Jor­dan, Alge­ria, Sudan, and Lebanon admit­ted Mus­lim Broth­er­hood mem­bers hold pub­lic office; this is an indi­ca­tor of the orga­ni­za­tion’s exten­sive strength and inter­na­tion­al­ism. A more sin­is­ter indi­ca­tor of strength is the esti­mat­ed num­ber of Broth­er­hood mem­bers and sym­pa­thiz­ers killed in Syr­ia, 10,000 to 30,000, and the num­ber of per­sons dis­placed, 800,000, in 1981. The bulging prison pop­u­la­tion of Mus­lim Broth­ers in Egypt is esti­mat­ed to exceed 15,000. The ris­ing num­ber of Broth­er­hood non-gov­ern­men­tal orga­ni­za­tions (NGOs) like Islam­ic Relief, Mer­cy Inter­na­tion­al, Mus­lim Asso­ci­a­tion, Mus­lim Arab Youth Move­ment, and the Holy Land Foun­da­tion are just the iden­ti­fi­able tip of the ice­berg of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s world­wide NGO sup­port efforts. The Broth­er­hood’s iden­ti­fi­able pres­ence on col­lege and uni­ver­si­ty cam­pus­es spans much of the world, Uni­ver­si­ty of South Flori­da (US), Oxford Col­lege (UK), West Glam­or­gan Insti­tute of High­er Edu­ca­tion (UK), Cairo and Al Azhar Uni­ver­si­ty (Egypt), Khar­toum Uni­ver­si­ty (Sudan), Amman Uni­ver­si­ty (Jor­dan), the Uni­ver­si­ty of Med­i­na (start­ed by the Broth­er­hood in Sau­di Ara­bia), 22 Uni­ver­si­ty of Jed­dah (Sau­di Ara­bia), and Islam­ic Uni­ver­si­ty (Pak­istan). While these exam­ples and fig­ures do not give an exact num­ber of mem­bers, the sheer glob­al nature of the orga­ni­za­tion sug­gests a mem­ber­ship in the many mil­lions.”

(Ibid.; p. 54.)

12. Uti­liz­ing a cel­lu­lar struc­ture and an infor­mal net­work, the Broth­er­hood has insu­lat­ed itself against hier­ar­chi­cal state con­trol. As not­ed in the Air War Col­lege study, this type of infor­mal net­work­ing is com­mon to Mid­dle East­ern cul­tures.

“The Broth­er­hood uses an infor­mal social net­work that is rel­a­tive­ly imper­vi­ous to author­i­tar­i­an state con­trol. The infor­mal net­work is an indeli­ble com­po­nent of the Mid­dle East social fab­ric. The basic build­ing block is a five-man cell known as a ‘fam­i­ly’ in which the ini­tial indoc­tri­na­tion to the Broth­er­hood occurs. Through every­day inter­ac­tion the net­works serve as the focal point for mobi­liz­ing col­lec­tive action. The Broth­er­hood uses week­ly small group meet­ings (Halaqua), month­ly mul­ti group meet­ings (Kat­i­bah), trips, camps, course of instruc­tion, work­shops, and con­fer­ences to indoc­tri­nate and edu­cate mem­bers and coor­di­nate action. . . . The Brotherhood’s world­wide branch­es work in accor­dance with the country’s local cir­cum­stances to achieve their objec­tives. . . .”

(Ibid.; p. 55.)

13. As not­ed above, the Brotherhood’s NGO’s are a source of its appeal, in that they pro­vide very real and bad­ly need­ed char­i­ta­ble ser­vices in the large­ly impov­er­ished Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ties that they serve. In addi­tion to gen­er­at­ing and sus­tain­ing the Brotherhood’s elec­toral pop­u­lar­i­ty, these NGO’s also dou­ble as ter­ror­ist fund­ing con­duits, mak­ing the iso­la­tion and neu­tral­iza­tion of Broth­er­hood ter­ror net­works dif­fi­cult, par­tic­u­lar­ly in West­ern democ­ra­cies that tra­di­tion­al­ly pro­vide con­sti­tu­tion­al pro­tec­tion reli­gious and char­i­ta­ble orga­ni­za­tions.

“In Islam, alms giv­ing or char­i­ty rep­re­sents one of the five pil­lars of the faith. Char­i­ta­ble dona­tions are as impor­tant as pray­ing. Typ­i­cal­ly, Mus­lims give ‘2.5 % of their annu­al income’ to char­i­ta­ble caus­es. This is known in Ara­bic as ‘zakat.’ Much of this fund­ing goes direct­ly to grass root non-gov­ern­men­tal orga­ni­za­tion (NGO) efforts. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s strat­e­gy relies heav­i­ly on this pil­lar of the Islam­ic faith to fund their social wel­fare pro­grams that pro­vide their base of pop­u­lar sup­port. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood draws heav­i­ly for finan­cial sup­port from dias­po­ras from coun­tries like Egypt, Alge­ria, and Syr­ia where repres­sion of the Islam­ic fun­da­men­tal­ists has result­ed in mas­sive relo­ca­tions and emi­gra­tion to Sau­di Ara­bia, Jor­dan, Lebanon, Iraq, Europe, and Amer­i­ca. A prime exam­ple of the mag­ni­tude of this phe­nom­e­non is Syr­ia. In Feb­ru­ary 1981, the Syr­i­an gov­ern­ment, fol­low­ing a wave of Mus­lim Broth­er­hood inspired vio­lence, bru­tal­ly repressed the Syr­i­an Mus­lim Broth­er­hood move­ment. The Syr­i­an gov­ern­men­t’s repres­sion result­ed in the com­plete destruc­tion of the town of Hama and the esti­mat­ed death of some 10,000 to 30,000 men, women, and chil­dren. Fol­low­ing this bru­tal sup­pres­sion over 800,000 Syr­i­an Mus­lim Broth­er­hood mem­bers and Islam­ic fun­da­men­tal­ist sym­pa­thiz­ers fled the coun­try to Jor­dan, Sau­di Ara­bia, and Lebanon. . . .”

(Ibid.; p. 60.)

14. Europe and Amer­i­ca are two of the pri­ma­ry des­ti­na­tions for the Broth­er­hood dias­po­ra.

“In Alge­ria, Tunisia, and Egypt the aggres­sive repres­sion of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and like-mind­ed Islam­ic fun­da­men­tal­ist orga­ni­za­tions result­ed in a mas­sive emi­gra­tion to Europe, the Mid­dle East, and Amer­i­ca. Dur­ing recent decades, the Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion of France has grown to over five mil­lion. Over one half of these emi­grants hail from North Africa. Accord­ing to U.S. Immi­gra­tion records, over 78,000 legal immi­grants from Egypt and Syr­ia entered the U.S. between 1989 and 1999. In both Europe and the Unit­ed States, these new immi­grants, dri­ven by a reli­gious require­ment, chan­nel their char­i­ta­ble dona­tions back to coun­try orga­ni­za­tions like the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood that have both a char­i­ta­ble and a polit­i­cal agen­da. . . .”


15. Of par­tic­u­lar impor­tance is the Unit­ed States. For rea­sons enu­mer­at­ed in the pas­sage that fol­lows, the ter­ror­ist sub-groups of the Broth­er­hood have found the U.S. to be fer­tile ground. The Wash­ing­ton D.C.-based ter­ror­ist fund­ing appa­ra­tus revealed by the 3/20/2002 Oper­a­tion Green Quest raids chan­neled mon­ey to Al Qae­da, Hamas and Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad. At the epi­cen­ter of the SAAR net­work tar­get­ed by the raids was the Mus­lim Brotherhood’s Bank Al Taqwa.

“The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and the more vio­lent orga­ni­za­tions it has cre­at­ed, like Hamas, have found a very per­mis­sive, lucra­tive, and hos­pitable oper­a­tional envi­ron­ment in the Unit­ed States. They are fol­low­ing their orga­ni­za­tion­al doc­trine to build a coali­tion of like­mind­ed fun­da­men­tal­ists whose non-vio­lent, overt actions cam­ou­flage their accep­tance and sup­port of ter­ror­ist vio­lence to accom­plish their com­mon objec­tives. The Unit­ed States affords free­dom of action, superb com­mu­ni­ca­tion capa­bil­i­ties, a wealth of fund­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties, and a recruit­ment base of edu­cat­ed tal­ent. Work­ing through non-prof­it and tax exempt foun­da­tions, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood has con­struct­ed a net­work of orga­ni­za­tions. While there is no hier­ar­chal com­mand struc­ture, they share a link­age through their core Mus­lim Broth­er­hood beliefs. These orga­ni­za­tions pro­vide the infra­struc­ture that facil­i­tates dis­sem­i­na­tion of pro­pa­gan­da, indoc­tri­na­tion of mem­bers, com­mu­ni­ca­tion between orga­ni­za­tions, appeals for finan­cial sup­port, access to a larg­er con­tact pop­u­la­tion, and the con­scrip­tion of future ter­ror­ist recruits.”

(Ibid.; p. 63.)

[For more about the Mus­lim Brotherhood’s ter­ror­ist oper­a­tions in the Unit­ed States, see—among oth­er pro­grams—FTR#’s 454, 455, 456, 462, 464, 467, 513, 515, 538. Be sure to use the search func­tion at the top of this page to learn more about Broth­er­hood state­side oper­a­tions such as the SAAR net­work, the Safa group and Ptech.]

16. When the Brotherhood’s very real char­i­ta­ble infra­struc­ture fails to win suc­cess at the bal­lot box, the janus-faced orga­ni­za­tion turns to its “dark side”—the ter­ror­ist infra­struc­ture that exists along­side its benev­o­lent oper­a­tions. Reflect­ing on the SAAR net­work men­tioned above, it is inter­est­ing to note how the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood advo­cates infil­trat­ing exist­ing insti­tu­tions in order to co-opt them to its own ends.

“The struc­ture of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood pro­vides a vehi­cle through which ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tions can coop­er­ate on a local lev­el with­out the use of the tra­di­tion­al pyra­mid com­mand struc­ture. As was seen in the 1993 bomb­ing of the World Trade Cen­ter, ter­ror­ists of five dif­fer­ent nation­al­i­ties, dif­fer­ent orga­ni­za­tion­al affil­i­a­tions, and dif­fer­ent agen­das, were able to find a com­mon ide­o­log­i­cal base in the doc­trine espoused by the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s pre­ferred course of action is to gain con­trol of the gov­ern­ments through the bal­lot box. With con­trol of the gov­ern­ment secured, they then seek to insti­tute their objec­tive of ‘Islamiz­ing’ the nation. To accom­plish this task the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood use a two-pronged approach. At the ‘intel­li­gentsia’ lev­el, they seek to con­trol social insti­tu­tions by infil­trat­ing and attain­ing promi­nent posi­tions in pro­fes­sion­al orga­ni­za­tions, gov­ern­ment offices, insti­tu­tions of high­er learn­ing, and labor unions. At the ‘pro­le­tari­at’ lev­el, they seek to devel­op pop­u­lar sup­port through char­i­ta­ble and reli­gious pro­grams. The Broth­er­hood seeks to indoc­tri­nate the pop­u­la­tion with their ide­ol­o­gy in order to form a sym­pa­thet­ic vot­ing block to push their objec­tives through the polit­i­cal sys­tem. Their slo­gan, ‘Islam is the solu­tion,’ is a clever tool for draw­ing pop­u­lar polit­i­cal sup­port for their cause and is also a call to stem the mod­ern­iza­tion and glob­al­iza­tion pro­mot­ed by the West­ern world. . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 63–64.)

17. Although the Broth­er­hood pro­fess­es sup­port for demo­c­ra­t­ic val­ues, its pur­pose­ful vague­ness about its ends is reveal­ing:

“ . . . The Broth­er­hood’s lack of def­i­n­i­tion as to how they would use pow­er is a sig­nif­i­cant con­cern. Would they use pow­er to reverse the demo­c­ra­t­ic process to cre­ate theo­crat­ic author­i­tar­i­an regimes? Their stat­ed objec­tives leave lit­tle room for the demo­c­ra­t­ic con­cepts of polit­i­cal com­pro­mise, major­i­ty rule, and minor­i­ty rights. The Broth­er­hood every­where advo­cates the inte­gra­tion of their inter­pre­ta­tion of Islam­ic pre­cepts into the exist­ing sec­u­lar gov­ern­ment struc­ture, the estab­lish­ment of Islam­ic theoc­ra­cies, the use of inter­na­tion­al ter­ror­ism to fur­ther their cause, the manip­u­la­tion of NGOs to sup­port their cause, and the use of Mus­lim Broth­er­hood mujahidin to serve as a Broth­er­hood for­eign legion in the inter­nal con­flicts of oth­er Islam­ic states. Every­where it exists, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s activ­i­ties range from polit­i­cal par­ty activism to pro­mot­ing an insur­gency that uses ter­ror­ism as a tool. The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s past strate­gies point­ed­ly show how this sup­pos­ed­ly non-vio­lent orga­ni­za­tion aids and sus­tains rad­i­cal Islam­ic groups who resort to vio­lent means if their pop­u­lar efforts are sub­vert­ed. From the ranks of the Broth­er­hood, mem­bers have answered the call to ‘Jihad’ in Pales­tine, Bosnia, Afghanistan, the Philip­pines, and Chech­nya. In Alge­ria, Syr­ia, and Egypt the Broth­er­hood serves as the umbrel­la orga­ni­za­tion pro­mot­ing armed strug­gles. . . .”

(Ibid.; pp. 71–72.)

18. Behind the emp­ty slo­ga­neer­ing of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, their self-pro­fessed mod­er­a­tion shows itself to be what it is. In Egypt, Broth­er­hood par­lia­men­tary mem­bers lob­bied against the dis­tri­b­u­tion of female san­i­tary nap­kins in the women’s rooms of pub­lic high schools!! Some mod­er­a­tion!! [In fun­da­men­tal­ist Islam, men­stru­at­ing women are con­sid­ered to be unholy.]

“ . . . The record of Broth­er­hood mem­bers in the out­go­ing par­lia­ment pro­vides some clues to what this could mean for Egypt . . . . [Mus­lim Broth­er­hood par­lia­men­tary mem­ber Gamal] Hesh­mat was stripped of his seat in par­lia­ment in 2003 when his vic­to­ry was chal­lenged by elec­tion offi­cials but hopes to regain it in the sec­ond round on Sun­day. Before he was swept aside, though, he and oth­er Broth­ers in par­lia­ment railed against the Miss Egypt beau­ty con­test and the dis­tri­b­u­tion of female san­i­tary nap­kins in high schools. [Empha­sis added.] . . . .”

(“Mus­lim Broth­er­hood Dou­bles Strength in Egypt Par­lia­ment Sunday’s Vote Could Boost Group’s Pow­er as Oppo­si­tion Bloc” by Charles Levin­son; San Fran­cis­co Chron­i­cle; 11/19/2005.)

19. Man­i­fest­ing its fas­cist nature and its affil­i­a­tion with the Under­ground Reich, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood briefly let down its façade after its suc­cess in the Egypt­ian par­lia­men­tary elec­tions. In Decem­ber of 2005, the leader of the Egypt­ian Mus­lim Broth­er­hood echoed the pres­i­dent of Iran in label­ing the Holo­caust a myth. Some mod­er­a­tion!

“Two weeks after the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood won 88 seats in Par­lia­ment and estab­lished itself as Egypt’s only sig­nif­i­cant polit­i­cal oppo­si­tion orga­ni­za­tion, its leader issued a state­ment Thurs­day con­demn­ing Amer­i­ca while declar­ing that the Holo­caust was a ‘myth’ . . . .”

(“Egypt­ian Leader of Mus­lim Group Calls Holo­caust a Zion­ist Myth” by Michael Slack­man; The New York Times; 12/23/2005; p. A9.)

20. Not even Al Jazeera could negate the fact of the Brotherhood’s Holo­caust denial.

“The head of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the main oppo­si­tion force in Egypt’s par­lia­ment, has echoed Iran’s pres­i­dent in describ­ing the Holo­caust as a myth. ‘West­ern democ­ra­cy has attacked every­one who does not share the vision of the sons of Zion as far as the myth of the Holo­caust is con­cerned,’ Mohamed Akef said in a state­ment on Thurs­day. . . .”

(“Broth­er­hood Chief: Holo­caust a Myth”; Al Jazeera; 12/23/2005.)

21. The fore­run­ners of the Shi­ite fun­da­men­tal­ists in Iran were also deeply influ­enced by the Broth­er­hood. (As we saw in FTR#’s 352, 456, Aya­tol­lah Khomeini’s exile in France was financed by Nazi banker Fran­cois Genoud. For more about Genoud, see—among oth­er pro­grams—FTR#’s 453, 456.)

“ . . . The regime of the aya­tol­lahs in Iran grew out of a secret soci­ety called the Devo­tees of Islam, a Broth­er­hood affil­i­ate whose leader in the 1950’s was the men­tor of Aya­tol­lah Ruhol­lah Khome­i­ni. . . .”

(“Cold War, Holy War­rior” by Robert Drey­fuss; Moth­er Jones; January/February 2006; p. 56.)

22. Signs of “mod­er­a­tion to come” were evi­dent in the wake of the furor (Fuehrer!?) that explod­ed over the Dan­ish car­toons of the prophet Mohamed. The sub­ject of “car­toon­gate” will be dealt with in a future broad­cast.

“ . . . In Lon­don, hun­dreds of Mus­lims marched from the Regent’s Park mosque, one of the biggest Islam­ic cen­ters in Europe, to the heav­i­ly pro­tect­ed Dan­ish embassy, bear­ing plac­ards declar­ing ‘Behead the one who insults the prophet’ and ‘Free speech to hell’ . . . .”

(“Mus­lim Out­rage Gath­ers Pace” by Bertrand Benoit; The Finan­cial Times; 2/3/2006; accessed at: http://news.ft.com.)

23. A pic­ture of “mod­er­a­tion” is worth a thou­sand words. One of the splin­ter groups of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood is Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad. Check out this pho­to­graph of a Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad ral­ly from April of 2005.


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