Sec. of State Kerry Pushing Back on Pro-Brotherhood Policy

John Kerry

We must hope that Kerry’s public contradictions of administration policy reflect of a behind-the-scenes debate.


The disastrous effect of the Obama Administration’s support for theMuslim Brotherhood appears to be seen by Secretary of State John Kerry. In recent months, he has twice contradicted the administration’s policy with public statements against the Brotherhood and in support of the Egyptian military.

On August 1, Kerry enraged the Brotherhood by justifying the Egyptian military’s overthrow of President Morsi.

“The military was asked to intervene by millions and millions of people, all of whom were afraid of a descent into chaos, into violence,” he said, adding that the military was “restoring democracy.”

Then on November 20, Kerry said that the Muslim Brotherhood had “stolen” the Egyptian revolution that first toppled President Mubarak. He said that the Brotherhood won the elections afterwards because it was “the one single most organized entity in the state.”

The Brotherhood characterizes itself as the democratically elected representative of the Egyptian people. Kerry’s powerful statement undermines the Brotherhood’s claim to legitimacy and echoes the criticism of its opponents.

The Obama Administration as a whole, however, stands against the military intervention and cut off some military aid to Egypt in response. The policy is pushing Arab countries allied with the U.S. into the arms of Russia and has alienated the Egyptian population.

Read more at Clarion Project

Jihadi Leader: Jihad Against Egyptian Military a ‘Religious Duty’

Morsi supporters protest in Cairo Nov. 4, 2013 / AP

Morsi supporters protest in Cairo Nov. 4, 2013 / AP

BY: :

A top jihadi leader is urging Egyptian supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood to cease peaceful demonstrations and take up arms against the Egyptian military, which he dubbed “an army of infidels and apostates,” according to a translation of his remarks.

Egyptian Muslims should “come and respond to the call of jihad” and “come and shed blood for the sake of establishing Allah’s law,” Sheikh Abu al Mundhir al Shinqiti said recently according to the Arabic media.

Waging jihad against the Egyptian military is “a religious duty and divine obligation,” he said.

Shinqiti is a well-known radical thinker and jihadist who is close with the spiritual adviser of prominent terrorist Abu Musab al Zarqawi, the former leader of al Qaeda in Iraq.

Shinqiti’s call for jihad in Egypt came as the country’s court system upheld a ban on the Muslim Brotherhood, a decision that some fear could spark increased violence in a country already reeling from months of civil discord.

Shinqiti said that it is acceptable under Islamic law to kill Egyptian soldiers because “this army is apostasy from Islam and a pledge of allegiance to the enemies of Allah,” according to his remarks, which were translated from Arabic and republished by theLong War Journal.

“Muslim women married to a member of the army should know that their marriage is nullified because [their husbands] are apostates,” Shinqiti said.

Terrorism expert Aaron Zelin said that Shinqiti’s call for violence could reverberate on the ground in Egypt, where the military continues to struggle against pro-Muslim Brotherhood agitators and other terrorist forces.

“I believe Abu Mundhir al Shinqiti’s release is quite serious,” said Zelin, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP). “It is very important for jihadis on the ground for one of the top global jihadi scholars to confer legitimacy on the jihad in Egypt and the Sinai.”

Read more at Free Beacon


Down and Out in Amman: The Rise and Fall of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood

Jordan MB

Jordan’s Muslim Brothers have been overtaken by rapidly changing events in Jordan and across the Arab world.



Today, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is down, if not completely out. After the Egyptian military deposed President Mohamed Morsi, a ranking Brotherhood bureaucrat, in July, Egypt’s courts charged him with a litany of felonies and the army cracked down, shooting more than a thousand of his supporters and detaining most of the Brotherhood’s leadership.

Last week, an Egyptian court issued an injunction to dissolve the group altogether and seize its assets, outlawing “all activities” by the 85-year year-old Islamist movement. As bad as things are for the Egyptian Brotherhood, however, it isn’t the only chapter of the organization that faces setbacks. More than two years into the Arab revolts that saw Islamist gains in Tunisia, Libya, Syria, and, at least temporarily, Egypt, Muslim Brothers in Jordan are in the middle of their own crisis.

Once a powerful voice for electoral reform, a vocal critic of palace corruption, and the leading opponent of economic normalization with Israel, lately the Jordanian Brotherhood has seen its local influence and standing erode. Other Islamists, too, are finding it hard to capture the public’s attention. Groups in the Jordanian parliament that are unaffiliated with the Brotherhood tried to push forward a bill to “harmonize” legislation with sharia; the motion failed, gathering just 27 of 150 votes.

To be sure, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s authoritarian tendencies, imperious style, and economic mismanagement contributed to the popular alienation of the group. Yet unlike in Egypt, where the military was ultimately responsible for the group’s misfortune, in Jordan the Brotherhood’s setbacks have resulted from both self-inflicted wounds and the changing dynamic of local Islamist politics.

Read more at Clarion Project

ALLARD: Perilous dalliance with Egyptian extremists

106_2013_b1-allard-ohanian8201_s640x740By Ken Allard:

“No way!” sniffed the money-honey at Washington Dulles International Airport as she refused to exchange my stack of Egyptian pound notes. “That currency is so unstable, we can’t even establish an exchange rate in real money. It’s worthless paper.” Badly jet-lagged, I testily replied that some humility might be in order since the American government, backer of the aforementioned “real money,” was at that very moment, technically insolvent. While I won the debate on points, those Egyptian pounds are still with me as rueful souvenirs of last week’s whirlwind fact-finding trip to Egypt.

Organized by the Westminster Institute, a McLean-based think tank, our small delegation of media and military analysts was given extraordinary access to Egypt’s top decision-makers, the first such private visit since last summer’s overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood. Our principal interlocutors included the minister of defense, Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-SissiTheodoros II, pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church; and Amr Moussa, drafter-in-chief of the new Egyptian Constitution. We also interviewed business leaders, journalists and student revolutionaries, street-wise veterans of the back-to-back uprisings that toppled the authoritarian regimes of Hosni Mubarak and Mohammed Morsi.

Bottom-line impression: While Egypt struggles valiantly, this key regional ally remains in serious trouble. With tourism down by 85 percent and the average Egyptian existing on $2 a day, foreign investment is a desperate, immediate need. Egyptian elites also worry that the strategic stakes (the largest Arab population and most powerful military) are being obscured by a Washington media muddle obsessed with Syria. From graduate students — many of them unemployed — to their executive-suite elders, the recurring nightmare is that the deposed Muslim Brotherhood will fight to regain control of Egypt, the capstone of the longed-for Islamist caliphate. Given the Brotherhood’s 80-year track record, such fears are not unreasonable.

This also explains why ordinary Egyptians reserve a special measure of loathing for Barack Obama, arguing passionately that he is the Muslim Brotherhood’s silent partner. Some of the most troubling comments:

• “Why does the American government under President Obama continue to back the terrorism of the Muslim Brotherhood — including the kind of terrorism that singles out women?”

• “Why does Washington keep demeaning our revolution by calling it a coup? With more than 20 million signatures on recall petitions and 30 million Egyptians in the streets, what else could the Egyptian army do but carry out the will of the people? Especially when the alternative was civil war?”

• “Egypt has been a loyal friend of the United States since Anwar Sadat and a military partner from Desert Storm to the War on Terrorism. So why are you criticizing your friends and seeing Egyptian problems only through American eyes?”

While no one was crude enough to mention Vladimir Putin as a substitute quarterback, the Egyptian military is palpably angry about the Obama administration’s slow-roll on modernization. Critical equipment, like the F-16 aircraft and the Apache AH-64 attack helicopter, is being delayed. The latter is an especially useful counterinsurgency weapon. Gen. el-Sissi told us flatly that he would not allow theMuslim Brotherhood or anyone else to mount attacks on other countries from Egyptian soil. By that, he meant control over Gaza and the Sinai while continuing to protect the economic “lifeblood” of the Suez Canal. Known threats in those places now include a copious flow of weapons spawned by the fall of longtime Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi. Knowledgeable Egyptians charge that “the U.S. just walked away from Libya once it was over” — ensuring that future military disasters were not left to chance.

Read more at Washington Times

Understanding Egypt’s Second Revolution

anti-morsi.si_-437x350By :

The Egyptian military’s recent removal from office of Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi “was not a coup,” judged the former United States Air Force lieutenant colonel and Middle East expert Rick Francona, but rather the “people rising up.”  Francona spoke at Washington, DC’s National Press Club during an October 1, 2013, panel featuring national security experts who had just completed a three-day visit on behalf of the Westminster Institute.  The panel expressed dismay that the United States was not properly responding to developments in country described by Westminster Institute executive director Katherine Gorka as “pivotal” to American interests in the region.

Retired United States Army Major General Paul E. Vallely referenced a popular Egyptian understanding of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood (MB) government’s fall as a “second revolution” following the “first revolution” ousting Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak.  Katherine’s husband, counterinsurgency expert Sebastian Gorka, noted that a petition presented to Morsi calling for early elections had gathered 22 million signatures.  Subsequently an estimated 33 million had taken to the streets to call for Morsi’s removal in early July 2013 in a country of 85 million.

Vallely’s army colleague, the former colonel and military commentator Ken Allard, discussed a popular Egyptian perception of MB as “terrorists” given their treatment of women and minorities.  Francona in particular cited anti-Christian violence by MB supporters that destroyed 1,000 Christian homes after Morsi fell.  Allard likewise discussed the delegation’s meeting with the Coptic Church’s Pope Tawadros II, a man “who watched his churches burn.” Many Egyptians additionally felt that the MB in power merely “governed for themselves,” Sebastian Gorka related.

As a result, the Egyptian military commander General Abdul Fattah al-Sisi spoke of a “civil war” absent Morsi’s removal in a meeting with Gorka and the other panelists.  This was particularly true given that there was “no impeachment vehicle” in the old Egyptian constitution, as Vallely noted, a provision now contemplated for a new constitution.  The “Egyptians are more united in” supporting the military’s actions “than we might think,” Francona judged.  Everyone with whom the delegation spoke similarly surprised Sebastian Gorka because they “sounded like they were coordinating their message” but were not.

Read more at Front Page

Egyptian Court Bans the Muslim Brotherhood

MB supporters in EgyptBY RYAN MAURO:

The Muslim Brotherhood has been banned by an Egyptian court and all of its assets frozen. An arrest warrant was also issued for SheikhYousef al-Qaradawi, the Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader who is based in Qatar. Fears of a backlash from the Brotherhood are well-grounded, but it won’t be a popular backlash.

Aware of how the Muslim Brotherhood often operates through fronts with different names, the court ruling left no wiggle room. It stated that the ban also applies to “any institution breathing out of it or … receiving financial support from it.”

The Brotherhood will make a lot of angry noise and its ideological colleagues in America, like the Islamic Circle of North America and the Muslim American Society, will again come to its side. But don’t let the media-savvy Brotherhood trick you into thinking there is popular outrage about its treatment.

After the violent crackdown on the Brotherhood’s “peaceful” sit-ins began, the Egyptian military was criticized by the U.S., but a statement buried in a New York Times article told the truth: “[M]any Islamists waited confidently for a surge of sympathetic support from the broader public. But it failed to materialize.”

The banning of a political party like the Brotherhood may repulse Westerners, but most Egyptians no longer view the Brotherhood as a legitimate political party. And, remember, this is the same Egyptian population that voted it into power.

The Egyptian Center for Public Opinion Research found that 69% of Egyptians completely oppose a political role for the Brotherhood. Another 13% want to ban the Brotherhood as a political party, but not as a religious organization. An astonishingly small portion, only 6%, said they support future Brotherhood political involvement.

Read more at The Clarion Project

Also see:


As world watches Syria, Egypt launches major campaign against jihadists in Sinai

More than 20,000 Egyptians soldiers are pouring into the lawless Sinai Peninsula to "cleanse" the vast region of militant jihadists. (AP Photo, File)

More than 20,000 Egyptians soldiers are pouring into the lawless Sinai Peninsula to “cleanse” the vast region of militant jihadists. (AP Photo, File)

By Paul Alster:

While the eyes of the world are on Syria, Egypt’s military is routing jihadists from the vast and lawless Sinai Peninsula — and, according to some regional observers, showing the U.S. how to conduct a war on terrorists.

Under orders from Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the military leader governing Egypt since the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammed Morsi was ousted, the Egyptian military is stepping up the fight against the growing coalition of Muslim Brotherhood, Al Qaeda and other radical Muslims gathering in the massive desert peninsula. Although the jihadist activity in the Sinai could be as big a threat to regional stability as the civil war in Syria, Sisi’s effort to confront terrorism at his doorstep comes without endorsement from the Obama administration, which has denounced the military takeover in Egypt.

“I am more than sure that the Muslim Brotherhood and its leadership in Egypt were actually encouraged by the Americans — and not just in Egypt,” Mordechai Kedar, a highly respected analyst of Islamic groups, and a former Israeli military intelligence officer, told “The State Department sympathized with the Muslim Brotherhood because they wanted Islamists to love America. They will do anything in order to look nice in the eyes of these Islamists.”

In recent weeks, ferocious battles have been fought by the Egyptian military against Islamists in the vast desert region that separates Egypt and Israel. The territory is meant to be controlled by Egypt under the terms of the 1979 peace agreement between the two countries, but things in Sinai were already deteriorating during the final years of former President Hosni Mubarak’s rule. Then, during Morsi’s brief, 12-month tenure, things became significantly worse

Read more at Fox News

Berkeley Prof: Anti-Morsi Egyptians Are Islamophobic


 Hatem Bazian

Hatem Bazian

IPT, by John Rossomando:

Why the Failure of Egypt’s ‘Secular’ Army to Protect Coptic Churches Matters

pic_giant_082013_SM_Egypts-Anti-Christian-PogromPJ Media, By Andrew G. Bostom:

Expatriate Egyptian Coptic Christian writer Samuel Tadros has just observed how Egypt’s Copts—the country’s indigenous, pre-Arab Islamic jihad inhabitants—have been under siege by a recent spate of Muslim Brotherhood inspired and led church burnings, which punctuates the worst outbreak of anti-Coptic Muslim violence since the era of Muslim Mamluk rule (i.e., the 13th to 16th centuries).

Tadros was alluding to the effects of mainstream Islam upon its Egyptian Muslim votaries, resulting in the inexorable attrition of the Coptic population by the mid 14th century—the indigenous, pre-Islamic majority reduced to a permanent, vulnerable minority by the usual pattern of Islamization, via jihad: massacre, destruction and pillage of religious sites, forced or coerced conversion, and expropriation. This chronic process intensified and reached its apogee in a series of 14th century pogroms and persecutions, described by the great Muslim historian al-Maqrizi:

Many reports came from both Upper and Lower Egypt of Copts being converted to Islam, frequenting mosques, and memorizing the Quran, to the extent that some of them were able to establish their legal competence and sit with the legal witnesses. In all the provinces of Egypt, both north and south, no church remained that had not been razed; on many of those sites mosques were constructed. For when the Christians’ affliction grew great and their incomes small, they decided to embrace Islam.

Egyptian military strongman, and recent putschist, General al-Sisi issued an ecumenical sounding statement pledging that that army engineers would assist in the reconstruction of the devastated churches, as reported on August 16, 2013:

The Egyptian defense minister ordered the engineering department of the armed forces to swiftly repair all the affected churches, in recognition of the historical and national role played by our Coptic brothers.

But these noble-sounding words have rung hollow given the subsequent, ongoing lack of protection the Egyptian military has afforded its “Coptic brothers.” As reported on August 20th, Bishop General of Minya (in Upper Egypt, four hours from Cairo) Anba Macarius was critical of the army’s continued feeble response, claiming their lack of initiative in protecting churches and other Christian buildings engendered the ideal environment in which “crime and terrorism flourish.” Macarius declared:

First we must protect the Christians and the feelings of those who have suffered loss. Now we are calling on the state to protect the churches and the army to come onto the streets.

The morally reprehensible inaction of Egypt’s allegedly “secular” army—failing to protect its hapless and beleaguered Coptic minority—heightens concerns over the direction of this institution under a demonstrably anti-secular leader, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. In a detailed analysis of al-Sisi’s 2006 US Army War College mini-thesis—which had to be obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request—I demonstrated that he is vociferously opposed to the kind of Western secular consensus model of government Egypt so desperately requires. Moreover, al-Sisi’s mini-thesis also espoused ardent Sharia-supremacist views, highlighted by his lionization of the classical Islamic Caliphate system.

Why does this matter, in the immediate term, both morally and strategically? As my colleague David French wrote in a passionate denunciation of the Egyptian army’s current predilections, and concomitant U.S. moral and strategic blindness:

As churches burn, as nuns are paraded through the streets by the Muslim Brotherhood, and as Christians across Egypt fear for their lives in the face of the jihadist onslaught, American policy can and should get very simple, very fast: Not one scintilla of aid until the Egyptian military demonstrates — by deeds, not just words — that it is committed to stopping this wave of persecution in its tracks, protecting the most basic human rights of its Christian citizens, and utterly defeating the Muslim Brotherhood.

The President’s New Clothes: Treachery as Diplomacy

by Dr. Reuven Berko
IPT News
August 20, 2013

Stephens: A Policy on Egypt—Support Al Sisi

download (2)By Bret Stephens:

On the subject of Egypt: Is it the U.S. government’s purpose merely to cop an attitude? Or does it also intend to have a policy?

An attitude “deplores the violence” and postpones a military exercise, as President Obama did from Martha’s Vineyard the other day. An attitude sternly informs the Egyptian military, as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) did, that it is “taking Egypt down a dark path, one that the United States cannot and should not travel with them.” An attitude calls for the suspension of U.S. aid to Egypt, as everyone from Rand Paul (R., Ky.) to Patrick Leahy (D., Vt.) has.

An attitude is a gorgeous thing. It is a vanity accountable to a conscience. But an attitude has no answer for what the U.S. does with or about Egypt once the finger has been wagged and the aid withdrawn. When Egypt decides to purchase Su-35s from Russia (financed by Saudi Arabia) and offers itself as another client to Vladimir Putin because the Obama administration has halted deliveries of F-16s, will Mr. Graham wag a second finger at Moscow?

Perhaps he will. Our diminished influence in Egypt may soon be reduced to nil, but at least our hands will be clean.

Or we could have a policy, which is never gorgeous. It is a set of pragmatic choices between unpalatable alternatives designed to achieve the most desirable realistic result. What is realistic and desirable?

Releasing deposed President Mohammed Morsi and other detained Brotherhood leaders may be realistic, but it is not desirable—unless you think Aleksandr Kerensky was smart to release the imprisoned Bolsheviks after their abortive July 1917 uprising.

Restoring the dictatorship-in-the-making that was Mr. Morsi’s elected government is neither desirable nor realistic—at least if the millions of Egyptians who took to the streets in June and July to demand his ouster have anything to do with it.

Bringing the Brotherhood into some kind of inclusive coalition government in which it accepts a reduced political role in exchange for calling off its sit-ins and demonstrations may be desirable, but it is about as realistic as getting a mongoose and a cobra to work together for the good of the mice.

What’s realistic and desirable is for the military to succeed in its confrontation with the Brotherhood as quickly and convincingly as possible. Victory permits magnanimity. It gives ordinary Egyptians the opportunity to return to normal life. It deters potential political and military challenges. It allows the appointed civilian government to assume a prominent political role. It settles the diplomatic landscape. It lets the neighbors know what’s what.

And it beats the alternatives. Alternative No. 1: A continued slide into outright civil war resembling Algeria’s in the 1990s. Alternative No. 2: Victory by a vengeful Muslim Brotherhood, which will repay its political enemies richly for the injuries that were done to it. That goes not just for military supremo Abdel Fattah Al Sisi and his lieutenants, but for every editor, parliamentarian, religious leader, businessman or policeman who made himself known as an opponent of the Brotherhood.

Question for Messrs. Graham, Leahy and Paul: Just how would American, Egyptian, regional or humanitarian interests be advanced in either of those scenarios? The other day Sen. Paul stopped by the Journal’s offices in New York and stressed his opposition to any U.S. policy in Syria that runs contrary to the interests of that country’s Christians. What does he suppose would happen to Egypt’s Copts, who have been in open sympathy with Gen. Sisi, if the Brotherhood wins?

Read more at WSJ


Brotherhood’s top leader Badie detained – Islamist resistance to army folds


The Muslim Brotherhood’s Supreme Guide Mohammed Badie was detained early Tuesday, Aug. 20, in a Cairo hideout near Nasr City, where one of the protest camps was broken up last week. Most of the Brotherhood’s leadership are now in custody or have fled the country, some of them to the Gaza Strip. The Badie arrest marks the collapse of his movement’s resistance to Defense Minister Gen. Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s takeover of rule from president Mohamed Morsi. Protest rallies scheduled for Monday in Cairo and other Egyptian towns were cancelled after the army was deployed at key sites. After a week of violent clashes, life began returning to normal in Egypt’s cities. Badie’s arrest was aired non-stop through Tuesday night by Egyptian state television. Next week, he and other leading Brotherhood members go on trial on charges of inciting violence and causing the deaths of hundreds of civilians, soldiers and police officers.

DEBKAfile reported earlier on the deep Saudi involvement in lobbying the West on behalf of Egypt’s military rulers and in negotiations for Moscow’s support.
Monday, Aug. 19, communiqués from Riyadh made it clear that if the Obama administration withholds military or economic assistance from Egypt, Saudi Arabia would replace those amounts. Foreign Minister Saud al Faisal set out on a tour of European capitals – according to DEBKAfile’s Gulf sources, with a tough message: Call off your campaign against Gen. El-Sisi and your pressure to restore Muslim Brotherhood rule in Egypt, or else your economic ties with Saudi Arabia will be affected – or even severed. The Saudi minister knows that, with the exception of Germany, no European government can afford to forego those ties.
The Saudi campaign had its first success in Paris, where in a joint French-Saudi statement, President Francois Hollande, backing off from French denunciations of the military crackdown on the Brotherhood, appealed for Egypt’s “roadmap” (authored by Gen. El-Sisi) to be given a chance.

Read our previous report below with details of the Saudi diplomatic campaign to stop the flow of Western condemnation of Egypt’s military regime:
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates – not Israel – are lobbying the West for support of the Egyptian military. Their campaign is orchestrated by Saudi Director of Intelligence Prince Bandar Bin Sultan – not an anonymous senior Israeli official as claimed by the New York Times, DEBKAfile’s Middle East sources report. The prince is wielding the Russian threat (Remember the Red Peril?) as his most potent weapon for pulling Washington and Brussels behind Egypt’s military chief Gen. Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and away from recriminations for his deadly crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood.

The veteran Saudi diplomat’s message is blunt: Failing a radical Western about-turn in favor of the Egyptian military, Cairo will turn to Moscow. In no time, Russian arms and military experts will again be swarming over Egypt, 41 years after they were thrown out by the late president Anwar Sadat in 1972.

Read more 

2011-634491044145538511-553Mahmoud Izzat fills in as Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide

DEBKAfile August 20, 2013, 2:00 PM (GMT+02:00)

The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood announced Tuesday that deputy leader Mahmoud Izzat will assume the role of Supreme Guide on a temporary basis following the arrest of Mohammed Badie early Tuesday. DEBKAfile: Izzat, known as the movement’s “iron man” was already serves at its secret operational leader. On July 22, after the military takeover, we reported that Izzat had set up a clandestine command post at the Gaza Beach Hotel to orchestrate underground resistance, and was working closely with Hamas and armed Al Qaeda-linked Salafists in Sinai.

The Islamic Insurgency That Could Soon Hit Egypt

egypt-islamists-protestRTR2PV6V-198x126By Eric Trager:

By disorganizing Egypt’s most cohesive Islamist group, the generals have turned hundreds of thousands of deeply ideological Muslim Brothers into free radicals who may no longer listen to their typically cautious leaders.

Shortly after the uprising-cum-coup that toppled Mohamed Morsi on July 3, I asked an Egyptian military official why the generals removed Morsi after only four days of protests when they had waited 18 days to remove Hosni Mubarak in 2011. “The previous military leadership was reactive,” he replied, referring to the junta that ruled Egypt for the 16 months following Mubarak’s ouster. “But this leadership wanted to be proactive.”

To some extent, this contrast reflects the age difference between the septuagenarian generals who sacked Mubarak — many of whom were subsequently sacked by Morsi — and the younger brass that now effectively rules Egypt. But it also reflects the current regime’s determination not to repeat what it views as its predecessor’s mistakes. Whereas the previous military council was overwhelmed by post-revolutionary political trends, this military leadership intends to set the political agenda. The old generals responded to mass protests, dealt with the Muslim Brotherhood and saw it win elections. The new generals instead called protests against the “terrorist” Brotherhood and, after resisting international pressure for negotiations, attacked and defeated it.

Indeed, if the remarkably low attendance at yesterday’s Brotherhood protests is any guide, the generals are succeeding in demoralizing and defeating the Brotherhood. Of course, given the many hundreds of Morsi supporters who have been killed and the deepening resentments among Egypt’s Islamist masses, the military’s victory may prove to be pyrrhic. But with public support firmly on their side, the generals have quelled the Brotherhood at least for the time being due to two key decisions: They struck first — remember, these generals are “proactive” — and focused on a strategy of decapitation, in which top Brotherhood leaders have been targeted for arrest.

The generals have thus demonstrated that they understand the Brotherhood’s vulnerabilities, since the Brotherhood cannot function effectively once its top leaders have been apprehended. After all, the Brotherhood is at its core a hierarchical vanguard, in which legions of fully indoctrinated cadres are organized under a nationwide, pyramidal chain-of-command. Specifically, decisions are voted on by a 120-member consultative (shura) council and executed by the 18-member Guidance Office, which passes directives to its deputies in each regional sector (qita’), who call their deputies in each province (muhafaza), who call their deputies in each subsidiary area (muntaqa), who call their deputies in each narrower populace (sho’aba), who finally communicate the order to the chiefs of each family (usra), which is essentially a five-to-eight-member cell.

Far from being arcane bureaucratic trivia, the hierarchical process through which the Brotherhood makes decisions is an integral part of what it means to be a Muslim Brother. All Muslim Brothers take an Islamic oath (baya) to “listen and obey” decisions reached through shura, and they firmly believe that any decision taken through the organization’s codified processes will advance its long-term Islamizing agenda. For this reason, Muslim Brothers even follow those commands with which they may individually disagree. For example, although many Muslim Brothers opposed the organization’s decision to run a presidential candidate, they nonetheless followed the Brotherhood’s command to campaign for Morsi in the 2012 presidential elections.

Disrupting this chain-of-command is thus vital to destroying the organization, which is why the military has pursued its decapitation strategy since the night it toppled Morsi, when security forces arrested top Brotherhood leaders and issued warrants for hundreds of others. The apparent goal was to capture Guidance Office and shura council leaders. But this strategy did not immediately work. Many of these leaders found safe haven at the Brotherhood’s Rabaa al-Adawiya protest site in northern Cairo, where armed men reportedly protected them and allowed them to continue making decisions for the organization. Meanwhile, the Brotherhood authorized its provincial leaders to make decisions beyond Cairo, thereby insulating the organization in case its top leaders were apprehended.

Read more at The Washington Institute




Egypt Warns Hamas Over Jihadi Threats


Abu Hafs al Maqdisi, the leader of the Gaza-based Jaish al Ummah (Army of the Nation)

Abu Hafs al Maqdisi, the leader of the Gaza-based Jaish al Ummah (Army of the Nation)

IPT, by John Rossomando:

Don’t rescue the Muslim Brotherhood

3983067811CSP, By Frank Gaffney:

Ever since President Obama came to office, his administration has cultivated relations with, legitimated, emboldened, empowered, funded and even armed the Muslim Brotherhood.  This policy has amounted to our changing sides in what is best described as the War for the Free World.

As documented in a free online, video-based course I produced last year (, one of the factors behind this strategically disastrous – and largely unnoted – reversal is the success the Brotherhood has had, going back at least to the Clinton administration, in penetrating and running influence operations against our country.  The Brothers call it “civilization jihad.”  And it has enabled them to establish not only an array of front groups to insinuate themselves into American civil society institutions and governing agencies.  It has also largely obscured the true nature of this organization and the threat it poses to our nation, allies and interests.

The success of such patient, stealthy subversion is much in evidence at the moment in the response to events in Egypt on the part of some prominent Democrats and Republicans, alike.  In recent days, President Obama and Senators like Jack Reed, Democrat of Rhode Island, and Republicans John McCain, Lindsay Graham and Kelly Ayotte of Arizona, South Carolina and New Hampshire, respectively, have discussed the need to cut off assistance to those in Egypt now battling the Muslim Brotherhood.

The principal justification offered for doing so is that the Egyptian people elected the Brotherhood to run their country after America’s longtime ally, Hosni Mubarak, was overthrown, with the support of the Obama administration.  It is further being intensified by the Brothers’ success in forcing the government to resort to violence to establish order throughout Cairo and other cities.

The trouble is that the bloodshed now taking place in Egypt – including that of Christians at the hands of Islamists who have torched or otherwise damaged more than eighty churches in recent days – is just a foretaste of what is to come if we do as the aforementioned leaders have in mind and rescue the Muslim Brotherhood.  And some of that blood will inevitably be ours.

This unhappy prospect is inevitable because of a fact obscured by the Brotherhood’s successful influence operations, and ignored at our peril:  We know for a fact that the Muslim Brotherhood has as its mission the worldwide imposition of Islam’s toxic, brutally repressive and anti-constitutional supremacist doctrine known as shariah.  And yes, it means here, too.

Lest there be any confusion on that point, consider the 1991 mission statement of the Muslim Brotherhood in America: “It is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within…sabotaging its miserable house from within…by [our] hands and the hands of the believers so that God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”  The strategic plan from which this passage comes was introduced into evidence during the successful 2008 federal prosecution of Muslim Brotherhood operatives in Dallas, Texas in connection with their fundraising in this country for the organization’s Palestinian franchise: the designated terrorist organization known as Hamas.

Senators McCain and Graham have also provided bipartisan political cover to the Islamists’ efforts to takeover other countries, as well.  These include, notably, Libya and Syria.  The former has been a debacle of the first order; the murderous attack on our missions and personnel in Benghazi is but a taste of what is to come there and beyond.  And these lawmakers are working with Team Obama to inject the United States into the latter’s civil war, with the predictable practical effect of helping the Brotherhood and/or al Qaeda take over that country next.

As in these other places, if the Muslim Brotherhood’s American friends have their way in Egypt – most immediately, by cutting off U.S. aid or other ties to its military – the killing will not stop.  It will, instead, mean those dying will increasingly be people who have historically looked to us as allies and partners.  And they will be dispatched by jihadists bent on our destruction, as well.

It seems the military and tens of millions of ordinary citizens in Egypt have no intention of rolling over, as their counterparts have done in Turkey.  In that case, an Islamist regime has used elections to destroy democracy and institute an increasingly shariah-compliant order – complete with the incarceration on trumped-up charges of much of the leadership of the Turkish armed forces.  Having tried and failed to effect a similar transformation in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood seems now determined to crush its opponents through full-scale civil war.  Were the United States to cut off Egypt’s military, it would simply encourage and perhaps enable the Muslim Brotherhood to pursue that course.

Even worse from our point of view, the United States will likely drive the Egyptian military back into the arms of the Russians – and possibly this time the Chinese – folks who would love to displace us and secure close relations with a nation that sits astride the strategic Suez Canal.  These are, after all, countries now seen, unlike America, to be reliable allies, not fair-weather friends.

The Muslim Brotherhood is our enemy.  Insisting on its restoration to power – either immediately or through another round of premature elections – will be perilous for this country and for people in Egypt and elsewhere who do not want to submit to the Islamists and their anti-freedom shariah agenda.