Friday, February 10, 2017

The Muslim Brotherhood: the ban

There are many misconception about the Muslim Brotherhood and the proposed ban: it shows you how much Gulf regimes now have influence--not as much as Israel, but still--over US foreign policy. There are two countering lobbies on this: Egyptian, Saudi and UAE potentates are lobbying for the ban, while the Qatari, Turkish and Tunisian potentates are lobbying against the ban.  I think that the Israeli lobby is not very active in the ban because the Muslim Brotherhood has been quite friendly toward Israel (especially in the branches in Tunisia, Turkey, Syria, and even Egypt).  The ban represents the meeting point between the Egyptian, Saudi and UAE potentates and the anti-Islam advocates in the US.  While I oppose the ban (when the organization Friends of the Israeli Army is not only legal but tax deductible) there are many misconceptions about the Brotherhood.  Remember that it was ALL Gulf regimes AND JORDAN who advocated, armed, and financed the organization for the many decades of the Cold War and it worked very closely with Western powers in their war on socialism and communism.  Israel had friendly relations with the Brotherhood in those years.  And the notion that the brotherhood "renounced violence" as some newspaper are writing, applies only to the Egyptian branch of the Brotherhood. Also, how could the US ban the brotherhood when it is sponsored by allies of the US to this very day?  Finally, the irony is that the Brotherhood would be banned while the most sinister and fanatical version of Islamic ideologization, meaning the Wahhabi ideology, remains not only legal but friendly in the US.  It was not the Brotherhood which radicalized US mosques and Western mosques (not that I like the reactionary and misogynistic and exclusivist ideology of the Brotherhood) but the Saudi Wahhabi ideology which is responsible for the radicalization of mosques and Islamic centers worldwide.