More Global Muslim Brotherhood Updates
by THE GLOBAL MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD DAILY REPORT
March 23, 2011
The Wall Street Journal has published an article titled “Egypt Vote Results Shows Islamists’ Rising Sway” which looks at the growing role played by the Muslim Brotherhood in the wake of the Egyptian revolution. The article begins:
CAIRO—Egyptians’ embrace of a set of proposed constitutional amendments in this weekend’s referendum is the clearest sign yet that leadership of the country’s revolution may be passing from youthful activists to Islamist religious leaders, according to analysts.
More than 70 percent of Egyptians vote yes to constitutional reforms in first free referendum in 30 years. Video and image courtesy of Reuters. Electoral officials said 77% of Egyptians voted to accept a set of proposed amendments to Egypt’s constitution that will, among other changes, limit the presidency to two four-year terms and ease restrictions on independent political participation, according to results announced Sunday.
The proposed changes were opposed by protest leaders and by presidential front-runners Mohammed El Baradei and Amr Moussa. Both men urged Egyptians to reject the amendments, written by lawyers and judges nominated by Egypt’s military. Protest leaders and opposition politicians instead pushed for an entirely new constitution that would limit expansive presidential powers.
The results from Saturday’s referendum signal a shift in Egypt’s continuing revolution: The protest leaders, once celebrated as heroes and martyrs, are no longer the leading voice in Egypt’s transition to democracy.
In their place are popular religious leaders, whose strong backing of the amendments held sway. These leaders see approval of the amendments as an avenue to political power and a means of preserving the country’s Islamic identity. With their influence in what appeared to be Egypt’s first free and fair election, these political playmakers show how they are positioned to help define Egypt’s democratic future.
The powerful Muslim Brotherhood, a once-illegal Islamist political group, was joined in supporting the amendments by leaders of the Salafi Islamist movement—which follows the ultra-conservative brand of Islam widely practiced in Saudi Arabia—and residual elements of the former ruling National Democratic Party, or NDP.
Opponents of the amendments, which included many in the youth movement, said the Muslim Brotherhood allied with the NDP as part of a cynical power grab: The approval of the amendments has set the stage for parliamentary elections this summer, for which only the Brotherhood and the NDP have the organizational structures to compete.
It should be noted that the Muslim Brotherhood today has become a global network and that the Egyptian mother branch is not necessarily the most important part of the movement. Sheikh Youssef Qaradawi, close to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, is often referred to by the GMBDR as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide.
Gulf media is reporting on a sermon given by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi in which he called on Arab leaders to recognize a Libyan rebel group that says it will be leading the country to democracy. According to a Gulf Times report:
Sheikh Yousuf al-Qaradawi delivering a sermon yesterday Qatar-based Islamic scholar Sheikh Yousuf al-Qaradawi yesterday called upon Arab leaders to recognise the rebels’ National Libyan Council “to confront the tyranny of the regime in Tripoli”.
He urged the Arab governments to support the rebels with weapons “to defend themselves even in a form of loan to be paid by the oil’s revenue in the future.”
Delivering the Friday sermon at the Omar bin al-Khattab mosque in Doha, Qaradawi said that the GCC states supported Oman and Bahrain with $20bn in an attempt to solve their domestic problems.
Al-Qaradawi, who enjoys wide respect in the Islamic world, advised the Egyptians – Muslims as well as Christians – to show unity “exactly as they did during the revolution.”
He added that “such unity is fought by the remains of the old regime and the state security.”
Qaradawi said that the former Egyptian interior minister Habib el-Adly will face trial for his alleged role in bombing a church in Alexandria in January “and therefore, the youth of revolution should show maximum vigilance and caution to avoid spoiling the achievements of the revolution.”
“Our Islamic nation should stand against injustice and corruption and I urge the Egyptian government to extend a helping hand to Libyan people and not to Gaddafi.”
Al-Qaradawi warned against counter-revolution in Egypt “possibly hashed by the remains of the falling regime namely the corrupt figures who benefited from Mubarak’s presence.”
He called for the dissolution of the “unneeded” state security apparatus in Egypt, saying that in fact “it was only for president’s security.”
“The apparatus which comprises of 1.7mn personnel cost Egypt millions of dollars and the people are in much need of that.”
The ruler is protected by the justice he makes to his own people and nothing else, Qaradawi added.
The website of the National Libyan Council describes itself as follows:
The council derives its legitimacy from the decisions of local councils set up by the revolutionary people of Libya on the 17th of February. These local councils facilitated a mechanism to manage daily life in the liberated cities and villages. The council consists of thirty one members representing the various cities of Libya from the east to the west and from the north to the south. The aim of the Transitional National Council is to steer Libya during the interim period that will come after its complete liberation and the destruction of Gaddafi’s oppressive regime. It will guide the country to free elections and the establishment of a constitution for Libya.
A post from yesterday describes how another Libyan opposition group cited Qaradawi’s statements in support of the rebellion. Another earlier post discussed a fatwa (religious ruling) issued by Qaradawi on live TV calling for the Libyan army to kill Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.
Qaradawi, a virulent anti-Semite is often referred to here as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide. Based in Qatar, Sheikh Qaradawi has reportedly amassed substantial wealth through his role as Shari’ah adviser to many important Islamic banks and funds. He is also considered to be the “spiritual guide” for Hamas and his fatwas in support of suicide bombings against Israeli citizens were instrumental in the development of the phenomenon. A recent post has discussed a video compilation of Qaradawi’s extremist statements. Qaradawi recently reiterated his support for suicide bombing in Israel and expressed his desire to die as a martyr “at the hands of a non-Muslim.”
A Sudanese media report indicates that the Sudanese President has denied requests by Global Muslim Brotherhood leaders to release former Sudanese Muslim Brotherhood leader Hassan Turabi from prison. According to the report:
The secretary-general of the [opposition] Popular Congress Party [PCP], Dr Hasan Al-Turabi, from his prison in Kobar Jail sought excuses for the chairman of the [Palestinian] Political Bureau of Hamas, Khalid Mish’al, who visited Sudan last week without visiting the family of Dr Al-Turabi or meeting his party’s leadership.
An informant told Al-Ahram Al-Yawm that Al-Turabi had said that the leaders of Hamas are faced with complicated political circumstances when visiting Khartoum and that he appreciated that they did not visit his family in Al-Manshiyah neighbourhood as did the leader of the Tunisian Islamic Movement, Rached Ghannouchi, who inquired about the Darfur crisis and the relationship between the PCP and the [Darfur rebel] Justice and Equality Movement during his meeting with the PCP deputy secretary-general, Abdullah Hasan Ahmad and Ibrahim Al-Sanusi in the party’s headquarters and Al-Turabi’s home in Al-Manshiyah neighbourhood as well as with Yasin Umar Al-Imam at Al-Thawrah in Omdurman on Thursday [10 March].
The head of Islamic and international relations of the PCP, Abubakr Abd-al-Raziq told Al-Ahram Al-Yawm that Al-Ghannouchi submitted a memo to President Al-Bashir requesting the release of Al-Turabi but the president pointed out that it would not be possible to release Al-Turabi in the current political situation after he made his intention clear to topple the government and his influence on the country. [Passage omitted: head of Islamic Scholars General Union, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, did not attend Al-Quds conference because he set a precondition that Al-Turabi be released, details of Al-Ghannouchi's visit to Al-Turabi's home]
An earlier post reported that Tunisian Muslim Brotherhood leader Rachid Ghannouchi had joined Hamas leader Khalid Meshaal and Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi in pressing Sudanese President Omer Al-Bashir to release Turabi from prison.
Hassan Turabi was involved in the past as a leader in the Sudanese Muslim Brotherhood and is probably best known as the man who invited Osama bin Laden to live in Khartoum during the 1990s when Sudan was both a center for terrorist activity and strongly under the influence of Turabi. The BBC has published a profile of Turabi which can be found here.
(Source: BBC Monitoring Middle East “Sudanese president turns down Tunisian Islamist’s request to release Al-Turabi” Excerpt from report by privately-owned Sudanese daily newspaper Al-Ahram al-Yawm on 12 March)
A statement by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi supporting the Libyan rebellion is being prominently feature on the home page of the Libyan opposition umbrella group. Several sources are reporting that Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi has said in an interview with Al-Jazeera that Western military operations against Libyan government forces are not a “crusade” as alleged by Libyan leader Gaddafi. According to one report:
The Muslim scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi, said that the operations launched by the Western forces against the regime of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi is not a crusade, has been demanded by the Arabs and the Libyans from the United Nations.
This came during an interview with Al Jazeera, in a question about the description of Gaddafi operations against Libya as a crusade against Islam, Qaradawi said, “Is Gaddafi is the protector of Islam, he didn’t know any thing about Islam.”
Qaradawi wondered, Is Islam to kill innocent people in charge of their care, he threatened that he and behind them in every place and threatening to kill people, Is this Islam, where Islam is it?
Qaradawi, we used these and the Libyan people is used to them, because Gaddafi did not let them until the last night when the Security Council was looking resolution, he said to them in this night I will kill you tonight and what happened is deemed necessary.
Qaradawi, according to the El Sabel Jordan newspaper, which published the interview, “We would like to be in the League of Arab mechanism to deal with such an order, but unfortunately we do not have and we eyed Authority an international not Arabs, as some say, and we appealed to United Nations, a global organization , what we do Every day people are getting killed with weapons they can not resist and this peaceful popular revolutions.
Qaradawi’s statement is featured prominently on the home page of the Libyan umbrella opposition group known as The National Conference of the Libyan Opposition (NCLO). A February Saudi media report hints at a connection between the NCLO and the 2006 protests against the Danish cartoons:
The NCLO has called for mass protests to take place inside and outside of Libya on the anniversary of the 17 February 2006 uprisings in the city of Benghazi where protests against the Danish cartoons of the prophet Muhammad were transformed into mass demonstrations against Gaddafi and his regime, resulting in the death of dozens of protestors and the injury of many more.
Qaradawi played a major role in sparking the cartoon controversy be declaring a “Day of Rage” although he had never seen the cartoons in question.
An earlier post discussed a fatwa (religious ruling) issued by Qaradawi on live TV calling for the Libyan army to kill Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.
Qaradawi, a virulent anti-Semite, is often referred to here as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide. Based in Qatar, Sheikh Qaradawi has reportedly amassed substantial wealth through his role as Shari’ah adviser to many important Islamic banks and funds. He is also considered to be the “spiritual guide” for Hamas and his fatwas in support of suicide bombings against Israeli citizens were instrumental in the development of the phenomenon. A recent post has discussed a video compilation of Qaradawi’s extremist statements. Qaradawi recently reiterated his support for suicide bombing in Israel and expressed his desire to die as a martyr “at the hands of a non-Muslim.”
An Islamic news source reporting on the funeral of Necmettin Erbakan, generally described as the founder of the Turkish Islamist movement, has provided an astonishing list of the attendees who represent a “Who’s Who” of the Global Muslim Brotherhood. According the report, these included:
- Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan tied to the Muslim Brotherhood in Turkey
- Mohamed Mahdi Akef, former Supreme Guide of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood
- Ibrahim Mounir. Muslim Brotherhood leader living in exile in the UK
- Youssef Nada, self-described foreign minister of the Muslim Brotherhood
- Ghaleb Himmat, business partner of Youssef Nada
- Ibrahim Al-Masri, leader in the Lebanese Muslim Brotherhood
- Mustafa Mohammed Tahan, Secretary-General of the International Islamic Federation of Student Organizations (IIFSO)
- Ahmed Abdel-Aty, Secretary-General of the IIFSO
- Ibrahim el-Zayat, leader of the German Muslim Brotherhood and Federation of Islamic Organizations In Europe (FIOE) official
- Ali Bayanouni, former Comptroller General of the Muslim Brotherhood in Syria
- Mohammed Nazal, Hamas official in Syria
- Qazi Hussain Ahmed, Amir of the Pakistani Jamaat-e-Islami.
GMBDR cannot remember a time when so many key leaders of the Global Muslim Brotherhood were gathered in one place.
A previous post provided background on Erbakan.