April 7, 2011
Barack Obama, the Muslim Brotherhood, and ZionismBy William Sullivan
Mahmoud Ahmedinejad of Iran has predicted a shameful end to the political career of Barack Obama. He contends that Obama offers the guise of "change and defending the rights of nations" only to use military force in order to protect American interests and Israel as George Bush did. But he will be far more shamed than Bush, he says, because at least Bush was honest about it.
Who knows, maybe purveyors of deception can just smell their own. But we Americans, and certainly the Israelis, are more than a little confused by the substance of his contention. If Mahmoud really thinks that Barack Obama has done anything to help American or Israeli interests, he obviously can't see the desert for the dunes.
Despite overlooking the human rights nightmare in the popular revolution in Ahmedinejad's country, Barack Obama has endorsed deposing Hosni Mubarak of Egypt and is currently exacting forceful measures to oust Muammar Gaddafi of Libya.
Principal among the opposition groups ready to seize influence in these countries is the Muslim Brotherhood, whom Obama has all but endorsed as the new political power in Egypt. And in Libya the group is emerging as a prominent political factor.
But in deposing these dictators and clearing the lane for the popular Muslim Brotherhood, what has Barack Obama really done for America or Israel? For example, has he helped to thwart future terror attacks and Islamic jihad?
A recent CNN piece authored by Paul Cruickshank and Tim Lister makes the claim that he has. The article explains that the Libyan faction of the Muslim Brotherhood, though not directly linked to other factions, shares the "philosophy of the pan-Arab Islamist movement founded in Egypt in the 1920's," and that if the Muslim Brotherhood has a "prominent role" in a new Libyan government, it would "dent support" for other "jihadist groups."
It's interesting that the article doesn't go to any effort to expand on what that "Islamist movement" of the 1920's was all about. Half of America can't tell you the three branches of our own government, but the writers of CNN assume that Americans might know the basis for a purposefully obscure Islamic movement from nearly a century ago? But as you might expect, this turns out to be a pretty handy omission if you're trying to present the Muslim Brotherhood in a positive light. The philosophy of the Muslim Brotherhood is primarily based on Hassan al-Banna's 1928 treatise, Jihad. Do you have any guesses as to what it's about?
Your everyday Islamic apologist may guess that it is about that contrived "internal struggle" all Muslims endure to be peaceful, loving, and compassionate to their neighbors. Do you know what al-Banna had to say of this so-called "jihad of the heart, or the jihad against one's ego?" Talk like that, he said, "is used by some to lessen the importance of fighting to discourage any preparation for combat, and to deter any offering of jihad in Allah's way." No, in al-Banna's philosophy, sending a mandatory "military expedition to the Dar-al-Harb" (the non-Muslim world) at least once or twice a year is preferable to that "internal struggle" nonsense.
So though the article makes the contention that the Muslim Brotherhood having power in Libya would "dent support" for jihadist groups, it conveniently leaves out that the Muslim Brotherhood clearly subscribes to a core jihadist philosophy in the most literal sense.
What about advancing human rights? Will the disappearance of Mubarak and Gaddafi make the Middle East a nicer place to live?
The Egyptian faction of the Muslim Brotherhood thinks so, but only if your idea of human rights includes "the preservation of honor by stoning adulterers" and "punishing gays." It's nice that Barack Obama thinks that dictators committing "potential humanitarian" crises are bad, but how does he feel, I wonder, about burying a woman condemned for adultery to her waist and having children and strangers hurl rocks at her until only a mangled corpse remains? We may find out, because that is what democracy will likely yield in Egypt, considering the Brotherhood is the leading spearhead for social reform.
And as far as the immediate substance of Ahmedinejad's claim, have Obama's actions protected Israel at all?
Presidential candidate Mohamed ElBaradei of the Muslim Brotherhood has announced that, if he is elected, Egypt would declare war against Israel if it decides to attack Gaza. This means that Israel, though perpetually absorbing rocket fire from Gaza, cannot defend itself without anticipating violent reprisal from Egypt. Where Mubarak's Egypt has many times remained relatively uninvolved when Israel was forced to combat its aggressive Arab neighbors, the new Egypt that Obama is helping to democratically birth may do no such thing. This amounts to more powder in the Middle Eastern keg and more suicide bombs and rockets in Israel's future. And, at least in part, they can thank our president for that.
Obama's foreign policy has not made America or the Middle East safer, and contrary to Ahmedinejad's belief, it is beyond dispute that our president is no friend of Israel. Obama is the product of progressivism, and progressivism is largely the product of 60's counterculture. And as such, he likely sees Zionism as an extension of American imperialism, and therefore loathsome. This is evidenced by his incessant apologies to the Middle Eastern world for America's past actions.
But I do have to admit, the fact that Obama is so politically aligned with the Muslim Brotherhood and is never seen to be at odds with them does suggest a far more sinister reason for his anti-Zionism. Like maybe he was listening more closely in Jeremiah Wright's church than he lets on.
William Sullivan blogs at politicalpalaverblog.blogspot.com.