Sunday, December 29, 2013
What is the Muslim Brotherhood?
On July 4, 2013, the day after the Egyptian military liberated the country from the Muslim Brotherhood; Christian Copts were targeted by them as being instrumental in ousting the Islamist president, Mohammed Morsi. Even so, religious violence against Christians remains largely unreported in the US main-stream media. Actually, persecution of Christians by Muslims appears to be reaching pandemic proportions.
Who was it that gave support to the Muslim Brotherhood in the elections that put Morsi in office? Did it rest on the shoulders of President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton? I wonder who will be singled out to take the blame for this major foreign policy blunder. Rather than pursue this direction, let’s see what the Muslim Brotherhood really stands for.
First, Islamists contrast with Muslim traditionalist in many areas, especially in their ideological emphasis on the state. Islamists view the state as the main instrument for implementing their vision of a God-pleasing society under Sharia laws. They concentrate on capturing the state and its centers of power. The first step is to try to take over legally within the democratic framework. If this fails, then violent revolution is necessary. Islamists are in the minority in most Muslim societies and states. However, their fiery rhetoric has caused much of the violence in the Muslim world. They have filled the vacuum created by failed secular regimes. Their rabid discourse has resonated in the hearts of the impoverished masses. Surprisingly, it has appealed to the new strata of literate people with modern technical educations.
Islamists visualize a struggle between good and evil – good being Islam and evil Western secularism, Judaism, Christianity, etc. The true believers do not always win, and often suffer defeat and martyrdom. However, if they fail, there is no cause for despair because God comforts them, and assures them that there will be a final victory. Yes, Westerners find this completely contrary to their cultural values.
What is the stated doctrine of the Muslim Brotherhood? In the 1940s, Hasan al-Banna, an Islamic activist wrote the doctrine. It is far too lengthy to include in this article, but a summary of the main features follows:
1. It states that Islam is applicable to not only spiritual matters and religious worship, but is all inclusive. It includes religion and the state, spirit and work, holy book and sword, etc …...
2. The Brotherhood believes the basis and source of Islam are the Koran and Sunna of the prophet. If a nation holds to these, it will never lose its way.