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Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Threatening Brotherhood, Part II

by Sam Huntington

Who are the Salafists? They are an enigma because while the word suggests moderate, Salafists are actually among the most violent of the Sunni movement, which includes Wahhabism. It is literalist and puritanical Islam. Salafist is a word recently developed as part of the pretense suggesting moderation among the Muslim Brotherhood. The term also describes Palestinian groups Jaish al Islam and Jaish al Umma. Salafism is an Egyptian invention, and here’s how it happened:

President Anwar al Sadat made the mistake of permitting the reemergence of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt during the 1970s. But he did terrorize them to the extent that they understood that if they resorted to violence in Egypt, if they were too vocal in opposition to the government, or if they became too successful, he would hang them in public. Thus, the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood, elderly and experienced —meaning harassed and tortured by Sadat, began to make themselves into invisible men. They had no illusion about the regime of Anwar al Sadat: they knew he could not last forever, and they realized patience is a virtue. From the 1970s on was a time for organization, education, and the pursuit of calm determination. They of course continued to support the murder of innocent Israelis and Americans, but they moderated violence at home.

Some of these new men were impatient, of course. They murdered Sadat in a most-public spectacle. Some of these people joined al Qaeda —even if having disparate views. But now the fruit appears on the tree and the Brotherhood is eager for violence and instant revolution. In the 2011 Parliamentary elections, the Salafist al-Nour party led the Islamist Bloc, which gained 127 out of 498 seats in parliament—al Nour itself won 111 of those 127 seats.

Is the Muslim Brotherhood friend or foe of the Salafists? I believe the Salafists have become a tool of the Muslim Brotherhood: useful idiots, as it were. If the Brotherhood wants a pipeline destroyed, they assign that task to Salafists. If the Brotherhood wants to create morality patrols, they use Salafists. And then of course, the Salafists become a convenient excuse: Hamas didn’t lob those rockets; Sunni extremists did that. The Salafists are also a good manpower pool. Whenever the Brotherhood is running short on pea-brains, they can always get them from the Salafists.

This one point stands out, however: the goal of Salafists and the Muslim Brotherhood are identical. It only remains to decide how fast to drive the train of extremism. Nor is the Muslim Brotherhood in any danger from the Salafists—not in Egypt, not in Tunisia, and not in Gaza (where the Muslim Brotherhood is known as Hamas).

So then who are the people Barack Hussein Obama unmistakably supported during the so-called Arab Spring —the Muslim Brotherhood, besides of course the primary religious affiliation among black American inmates? The Muslim Brotherhood is the communist party of Islam. Its goal is the establishment of a caliphate, naturally controlled by the Muslim Brotherhood, the total destruction of Israel, and it wants Shia justice: women in their place, queers in their graves, and Christians eliminated wherever possible. It wants all of these things, but it wants them cleverly.

What does cleverly mean? Well, for starters it means that the Muslim Brotherhood has to convince Western leaders that it represents a moderate face in Islam. Relying on the Democratic strategy found in America —a lie told often enough becomes the truth— the Muslim Brotherhood focuses its attention on the western press and the most useful politicians: John Conyers, Keith Ellison, Hillary Clinton, Martin Dempsey, Barack Obama … the list does go on far too long.

The lie told often enough will propel the Muslim Brotherhood to prominence, but we cannot suggest they will succeed. Yes, it is true they pose a clear and present danger to peace loving peoples everywhere in the world, but while clever, they are no geniuses. They despise the Shia; they will kill them when it is convenient. They will destroy national economies. Yet, ultimately, they must lose ... and for the same reasons that communism collapsed.

The question is, how long will it take to break the back of the Muslim Brotherhood —or is this even possible? As failures, will they go back into hiding to arise again, like a phoenix out of the desert? In my view, the Muslim Brotherhood must strengthen Israel, and Israel will determine its own destiny.

Still, we must wonder if western policy is capable of supporting genuine moderation in the Middle East, or whether it will become an obstacle, as with Obama’s inept "hands off" foreign policy.

h/t Dr. Barry Rubin & Tammy Swofford


  1. Good analysis. And this is why, while maintaining cordial diplomatic relations with all, we should not take sides.

    If we get out of it, they will go back to bombing, raping and murdering one another.

  2. The Muslim Brotherhood is the spawn of the Saudi Wahabbists and oil money is the source of all those very expensive weapons we keep seeing mounted on all those new pickup truck, all those very expensive rocket-propelled grenades we are seeing by the thousands all over the Middle East, all the money being paid to those people to support their families while they go fight and all the money paid to their families if they die. The money to Hamas, the support of the Palestinians and on and on. The only way to really put an end to all thid crap is to take over Saudi Arabia and run the oil fields ourselves. Right there is where we should have gone to war on 9/11, not Afghanistan and certainly not Iraq.

    We could hold Mecca hostage. Any attempt at violence would result in the instant total annihilation of their holiest site. That would stop them cold.

  3. "In my view, the Muslim Brotherhood must strengthen Israel, and Israel will determine its own destiny.Still, we must wonder if western policy is capable of supporting genuine moderation in the Middle East, or whether it will become an obstacle,"

    The MB must strengthen Israel?
    WE need to support genuine moderation?
    Is this from THe Onion? :-)

  4. @Z ... the danger imposed by the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and elsewhere will serve to strengthen Israel in its resolve to survive the onslaught.

    We cannot support attempts to modernize the Middle East when the Muslim Brotherhood only pretends to be a moderating influence, or when US foreign policy only pretends to curry moderation. It's a sham.

    Sorry you missed that.

  5. "The Muslim Brotherhood is the communist party of Islam."

    Muslim, Communist, WOW !!! What more could Comrade Obama ask for?

  6. … it means that the Muslim Brotherhood has to convince Western leaders that it represents a moderate face in Islam. Relying on the Democratic strategy found in America —a lie told often enough becomes the truth— the Muslim Brotherhood focuses its attention on the western press and the most useful politicians — the list does go on far too long.

    And the lesson here is …?

  7. This was a very interesting, informative series. The greatest understatement of all must be, "We are living in interesting times." You may be interested in a comment by Jack Camwell at Western Hero. Jack offers an interesting proposal. While I am not certain we should adopt Fortress America, I do think our Middle Eastern liabilities outweigh our Middle Eastern benefits. A reevaluation is in order.

  8. Sam,

    I think your first two paragraphs were fine and then you must have given up putting effort (or Tammy's weird agenda kicked in).

    You jumped from the Assassination of Sadat to Al Qaeda within one sentance and ignored the many decades between, for example.

    I get the feeling that you consider (wrongly) that the MB can be so easily defined into a simplistic entity. It cannot and it is based on a long history and all the events, add-ons, personalities and outside factors. For example that their goal on earth is a Caliphate. Sure they often use that term, but simply put EVERY MUSLIM knows that it is a utopian concept and that they just feel obliged to say it. Perhaps some misguided young fool in a cave on the Afghan/Pakistani border is working towards it, but the only other group that takes that term serious is the Spencers/Tammy Two-faced/Bachmanns whom in reality even know that it is not - they use it for their own reasoning.

    However, I do like your comparison to Communism in a sense that the MB is a grouping of similar goals and desires. Also, like Communism, you will get variants and levels of success but ultimately it will fail because it does push faith a lot further than most other Islamism varients. Pushing faith at that level simply will conflict with freedoms and secular values because it must include clergy in the leadership (theocracy) and that will not work.

    A last comment, your obvious dislike of Obama is aparent but I find no corelation to the subject. Obama made it clear that all he cares about is that there is free elections (ie democracy) in Egypt and that the resulting government respects international law. The new Egyptian Presidency obviously understands that and as we have seen, he has not declared on behalf of Egypt the need to destory Israel. We have seen, for example, the joint effort to get rid of radical militants in the Sanai. He is no clear friend to Israel that is clear, there will be no Mubarek-like relationship. In fact they have rather attempted to follow the Turkish style of Islamism.

    As for the Salafism, the MB suffered what most Muslims constantly suffer - their unwillingless to supress another Muslim community because that is considered a major sin. Salafis, whom are more than happy to condemn, supress and even murder other Muslims take advantage of it. Rather like us Europeans whom are willing to let in radical Muslims out of liberal tolerance get ourselves stabbed in the back by them when they arrive.

    The issue remains the capacity of Muslims to get rid of groups like Salafism that simply will dominate via violence, not by numbers or support. As long as we bash all of Islam, paint with the widest brush and put our own agendas into the event, we end up giving the Salafis the attention and ammunition they desire.

    Damien Charles

  9. Thank you, Mr. Charles.

    Yes, many decades have passed since the assassination of Awar Sedat, but I’m sure you realize that any writing beyond a doctoral thesis must be limited —if one hopes to maintain any audience at all. People do not like to read as much as in previous decades, most people simply don’t read at all, and this forces me to keep my writing short and focused.

    I agree that this business of forming a new Caliphate is a useful stratagem to incite others, much like the promise of a returning Mahdi … an interesting parallel to the second coming of Christ, but I won’t go further than that. There will always be passionate men, and there always be opportunities to exploit others in pursuant of an agenda. I am curious, however, how you think “Islam” will one day rid itself of extremist elements. What do you see as happening to modernize or bring Islam into the mainstream present?

    I actually regard the Muslim Brotherhood as a very complex organization with a wide range of activities and interests. I confess, however, that I find it impossible to accept at face value anything a Muslim tells me. I am certain this is part of the cultural divide. From my perspective, Muslims are treacherous and untrustworthy, but to be fair, I well understand why a Muslim may regard western culture with the same suspicion. I get it.

    My personal feelings about Obama are irrelevant. We don’t run in the same circles; my point, however, is that he is a weak president and his is a poor stewardship of American interests. This is my opinion and I’m sure it doesn’t matter to many people. Mr. Obama employs a sophomoric approach to the Middle East —as we have seen in the past two weeks. His ineptitude is both dangerous and tragic. But as I have said in the past, it isn’t just Obama; my government must do better and I do not see us achieving any improvements in the near term.

    I appreciate your comment.

  10. For what it’s worth, there is not enough money to entice me into accepting an ambassadorial post in the Middle East. Muslims can’t be trusted, westerners will always be an enemy, and American foreign policy is so inept, serving as an ambassador must be similar to playing Russian roulette.

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  14. I see Damian Charles still mistakes his wishful thinking to be reality. It is not, and Jack's opinion is worth a lot more than yours, DC.

    Having read 18 books on Islam, the Quran and much of the Haddith, and after following unceasing Muslim violence, murder and mayhem in much of the world, I would say that Islam is a very violent religion by its very nature, by its holy writings and by the nature of its bloody prophet, who is viewed as the perfect man and example in the Muslim world.

    Further, I think this article is way too optimistic, positing as it does that moderation of Islam depends on the right American foreign policy. There is no moderate Islam, though there are Muslims who choose not to follow all of its dictates, and who are viewed as apostates by the violent types.

    Muslims immigrating to the west have shown themselves unwilling or unable to assimilate. France has enclaves of Muslims who do not interact with the rest of French society.

    The only long-term solution to Islamic violence is to separate ourselves from them, to contain them in their own sphere where they cannot hurt us. That means stopping Islamic immigration into the west, removing our embassies from Islamic countries, and achieving energy independence.

    We don't have to fight the Muslim world, we just have to contain them and provide heavy disincentives to their attacks on Israel and the west; and yes, I believe that targeting Mecca and Medina in the event of another 911 is a sound strategy.

  15. DC
    Stop insulting people who don't agree with your views, that on many occassions don't reflect or may not reflect on past, present or future reality in many places.

  16. DC
    I hope you will not displease with the fact that I am also agreeable with most of Stogie analysis.

  17. Damien Charles,
    Again, you mentioned Tammy Swofford: Tammy's weird agenda.

    As I often do, Tammy and I had a long telephone conversation last night. (1) She didn't know until I told her that you are insulting her at my web site; she rarely visits my blog and almost never comments. (2) For your information, she does not have any communication with Robert Spencer. (3) To my knowledge, she has no contact with Sam; I'm sure that she would have mentioned any such contact when I told her how negatively obsessed you have become with her.

    So, I ask you this: In your opinion, exactly what is Tammy Swofford's agenda?

    Before you type in your verbiage, please read THIS, Tammy most recent essay for the Daily Times (Pakistan). An index to all of her commentaries in that venue can be found via the search bar at the very bottom of THIS WEB PAGE.

  18. Damien Charles,
    And two more things....

    1. You need to get over yourself in that you need to stop vilifying anyone and everyone who disagrees with you.

    2. You need to understand that people other than me have full administrative control of this blog; yes, I do have silent partners (people who can modify this site although they are not officially contributors). Any of us administrators -- and we're not in the same time zone -- might get ticked off at you at any time and start deleting every comment you make. Liberalmann has discovered how that works. A word to the wise. Damien.

  19. Stogie,
    We don't have to fight the Muslim world, we just have to contain them and provide heavy disincentives to their attacks on Israel and the west; and yes, I believe that targeting Mecca and Medina in the event of another 911 is a sound strategy.

    I couldn't agree more!

    BTW, I'm reading an excellent book right now -- a book that you might enjoy: Niall Ferguson's Civilization: The West and the Rest. The book is available in a variety of platforms.

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  24. Damien Charles,
    it reflects more on this blog than on me and more that I am hitting home to some key issues and it obviously triggers some sensitivities.....

    No. What is DOES reflect is that you have crossed a line into repeated personal attacks on various individuals. Argue ideas.

  25. Damien Charles,
    YOU are one who is constantly spouting self-congratulation.

    "Let another praise you and not your own mouth."

  26. Damien Charles,
    Tammy Swofford receives not a single dime. Just an FYI.

    Oh, and neither do I.

    You have more "problems" with Tammy than a lot of Muslims do. Sheesh.

    Give it a rest.

  27. Well Charles, here's an interesting slant on your nauseating arrogance: you do this because you are sitting behind a computer thousands of miles away from the people whom you insult. Otherwise, I suspect you would be walking around with a broken nose, a few missing teeth, and a massively swollen eye. That's how people like you learn about civility. However, protected as you are, it only makes you an *effing coward.

    * The other word would make me feel better, but I'm not allowed to use it here.

    PS. You're a muslim, right?

  28. FROM Z at work:

    Sam...I missed it, yes...your explanation was far clearer, of course!

    Damien...we need to stop caring so much about 'defining' and DO something about Islamist extremists. What, I don't know..in the meantime, we're DEFINING and giving every break we can to UNDERSTAND THEM. Are extremists taking time defining US or just shooting and hoping for the most collateral, while our servicemen are told "make sure there's no collateral damage"...unbelievable. And the West expects to survive? :)

    Sure, there might be all kinds of sects of Islam but where are the moderates? Why aren't they saying "NOT IN OUR NAME?" SOMETHING, PLEASE!???


  29. AOW,
    I have to say that I am really tired of Damien Charles verbal abuse and his illogical rants at me. DC comments against me have no substance whatsoever because he is not me and he never get to experience the horror that I have to experience. It is tiresome having to read Damien Charles unfair accussation and attacks on some of us bloggers who are only out to discuss our various personal point of views. DC appear to be a an irrational intolerant pro-islamics who go on the attacking mode whenever anyone comment about the too many extremist points of ordinary Moslems. .
    Hopefully, I don't need to read his boring comments of this otherwise very interesting blogsite(only when he is not around to attack us decent bloggers). His viciously unfair verbal attack on us decent bloggers not only make him appear like a thug, but also reflect more of his viciousness than his socalled knowledge. I should not be afraid to say that there are NO moderate Moslems, and bullies like DC should not be allowed to prevent anyone to speak what an individual think is the unpleasant reality, that most of us disadvantaged nonbelievers have to endure.That is the problems of moslems, ie they mix too much of their extremist islamic religious dogma in their most often foul islamic politics.

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  31. Z,

    I am more than happy to attack radical Islamists and political interest groups. You have similar problems that we have over here and in some cases it is worse.

    Groups like CAIR have, in my opinion, no longer have a right to exist and should be forced to disband. They have shown loyalty outside the United States and that is enough. They have shown that they represent Muslim lobby groups and not the Muslims of America.

    We have a number of groups that actively support the overthrow of our own government and culture. I do not understand how we allow their presence at all, which I blame "committee-room liberalness" that also blocks progress in the name of being "green".

    If I had the theoretical control of my country, all immigrants would be required to sign a contract that they must prove an effort to integrate and must announce loyalty to Britain and the Crown. Failure could and should result in expulsion. Imams that do not show support for integration and protecting existing cultures, standards and morals should be kicked out or banned from preaching.

    I have no problem with my and your governments making demands on Muslim countries that allow and support radicalism, you get no aid, no military assistance and no government-supported trade.

    I support drone attacks even though I know they are technically illegal under numerous laws.

    The problem in this world is really simple, it is the same problem that we always have faced except that the players change with the ages. Power and dishonesty. it always comes to groups wanting power and that the world is becoming a more and more dishonest world. Interest groups hide rather than simply show what and who they are and groups will use whatever leverage they can by abusing the name of God, faith and even hypocritically morality. Africa's biggest problem was forced change under the banner of Democracy that in fact created the opposite. Islam has its own hypocrissy of most forbidding itself from condemning radicalism in fear of cimmitting taqfir and their own political mess has resulted a power struggle between radicals, conservatives, moderates and old-school tyrants - each playing their own games.

    I have no problem pointing out the problems, condeming when necessary, but I base my arguments on evidence and logic, not just another agenda or wishful thinking.

    I am a Kantian, if you understand that then you understand why and how I base my arguments.

    Damien Charles

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  33. Sam Huntington & Damien Charles

    Thanks to both of you, your erudition and maturity in debate has made my visit here worthwhile. Any blog would only gain with such commenters.

  34. Damien Charles,
    Time only for a quick response right now.

    If you have questions for or comments to Tammy Swofford, her email addy is easily available. She "does not populate social networks" (I hope that is an exact quote. No time to check at the moment!)

  35. Damien Charles,
    One more quick thing....

    you would rather pull the plug than actually have real discorse

    You know that is not true. If it were, I'd have deleted and banned you a long time ago.

    Truth, sir! Please!

  36. Bombarding the Blogosphere with condescending, verbose pro-Islam 'pap' will do little to change the awarness of what is ACTUALLY happening in the World TODAY!

  37. D Charles...
    Word of advice. When you are the longest poster on the entire blog (and responses are longer than the original article), you sound like you can't write. And people won't bother to wade through the wordiness. And second, when a high schooler is the only one to remotely come close in length, your doing it wrong.


    Very well written Sam, very informative. Not much else to say but keep up the good work!


  38. @ DC,

    I find you a boorish purveyor of egotistical pablum. I cringe whenever you lapse into one your delusional self-righteous rants that include the word "logic", which you apparently do not understand.

    You have repeatedly cited as fact your own opinion, (which is riddled with logical fallacies as I have pointed out in the past.) and attacked the opinions of others.

    Say good bye, I'm deleting your posts as soon as I'm aware of them.

  39. I have been tolerant of DC snide and scornful personal remarks against me for ever so long, since I started posting on this blog. I think it is nasty of him to attack so many decent bloggers who happened to post our opinions on this blog. IF he wish to defend any islamic group, he should go to a pro-islamic site. Furthermore his comments had failed to spark up any decent discussion.He tried to discourage us decent bloggers from commenting on this site by his vicious verbal bullying. hopefully, he would realise that his attitude stinks oof extreme unfairness and narrow-mindedness. DC expect people to understand his highly inflated opinions or his horrible speech but failed to understand or respect my small and decent opinions and other decent bloggers opinions as fact.DC had unfairly criticised too many people and perhaps that is why I always wish to avoid reading his comment, even if I have the time.

  40. Warren,
    I warned DC many times. He chose to continue "doing his own thing."

    Now, he can peddle his pablum elsewhere.

  41. AOW,
    I see it as my duty to take out the trash.

  42. Warren @ DC:

    "Say good bye, I'm deleting your posts as soon as I'm aware of them."

    GOOD WORK! I wonder if this guy is so egomanic that he sees this as some sort of a victory?

  43. Jon,
    DC does probably see it as a sort of victory.

    It isn't.

    If DC thinks that it is, he's twisted.

  44. JonBerg said:

    "I wonder if this guy is so egomanic that he sees this as some sort of a victory?

    Probably, but it isn't about winning or losing. As far as I'm concerned, its just cleaning up and removing the trash.

    He should start his own blog and then he can post all the lslamophile crap he wants.

  45. Ayaan Hirsi Ali on how to cope with the political rise of the Muslim Brotherhood and like groups. Interesting!

  46. "AOW,
    I see it as my duty to take out the trash.
    September 22, 2012 11:42:00 AM EDT"
    WARREN, Here, here! Well done,Chap!

  47. "John Adams to Thomas Jefferson on July 16, 1814, reveals John Adams’ true feelings about Islam:
    Adams states that Mohammed is “a military fanatic” who “denies that laws were made for him; he arrogates everything to himself by force of arms.”

  48. That being said, HEAR THIS!:
    "Here is what John Quincy Adams wrote about the Islamic prophet Mohammed:

    In the seventh century of the Christian era, a wandering Arab of the lineage of Hagar, the Egyptian, combining the powers of transcendent genius, with the preternatural energy of a fanatic, and the fraudulent spirit of an impostor, proclaimed himself as a messenger from Heaven, and spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth. Adopting from the sublime conception of the Mosaic law, the doctrine of one omnipotent God; he connected indissolubly with it, the audacious falsehood, that he was himself his prophet and apostle. Adopting from the new Revelation of Jesus, the faith and hope of immortal life, and of future retribution, he humbled it to the dust, by adapting all the rewards and sanctions of his religion to the gratification of the sexual passion. He poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex, and the allowance of polygamy; and he declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind. THE ESSENCE OF HIS DOCTRINE WAS VIOLENCE AND LUST: TO EXALT THE BRUTAL OVER THE SPIRITUAL PART OF HUMAN NATURE. "

  49. Thank you, Fearless One! it is a pleasure to have
    e-speaks with your honorable band of solid patriots!


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