The Muslim Brotherhood


“Allah is our objective; the Quran our constitution; the Prophet is our  leader; struggle is our way; and death for the sake of Allah is the highest of  our aspirations.”

In 1924, the collapse of the Ottoman Empire in Turkey and the ascension of  Ataturk to the leadership of a new secular government, ended the Islamic  Caliphate. The Caliphate had been led by Istanbul for centuries, even though its  power had steadily waned after the disastrous defeat of Muslim forces by the  Poles at the siege of Vienna in 1683. With the establishment of secular rule in  Turkey, there was no longer a single Islamic political power.

The reaction to the loss of the Caliphate led to two major Islamist  movements, both of which, along with their successor groups, are still making  their presence felt today. The first was the Wahabi sect in Saudi Arabia, which  soon became the guiding ideology of the House of Saud, and remains the backbone  of Salafist ideology to this day. Wahabism grew out of the tribal Bedouin  society of the Arabian Peninsula and soon became what Walid Phares calls “Top-Down jihad.”

The second group to emerge in the pursuit of a new Caliphate was  “al-Ikhwan al-Muslimeen,” the “Society of Muslim Brothers.”  Founded in 1928 by an Egyptian schoolteacher, Hassan al-Banna, it stated its  purpose from the outset–shariah law and the restoration of the Islamic  Caliphate. The quote at the top of the page is from the Muslim Brotherhood’s  mission statement.

As part of al-Banna’s intense hatred for secular and materialist forces in  the modern world, he began to adopt elements of European anti-capitalism and  Marxism in his ideology. Elements, particularly of the anti-capitalism, can  still be found in a great deal of Islamist ideology today. It also led into the  kind of internationalism that the international communists were espousing, only  with international jihad and shariah law being the goals, rather than  communism.

The first major international act of the Muslim Brotherhood was the Great  Arab Revolt of 1936-39. Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem,  incited his people to a three-year war against the British and Jews in the  Palestine Mandate. Amin al Husseini was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.  Brotherhood membership spiked during the war, going from around 800 in 1936 to  over 200,000 by 1939.

During the Second World War, the Muslim Brotherhood sided with Nazi Germany.  The Brotherhood’s institutional anti-Semitism fit well with the Reich’s  policies, while other similarities in their worldviews and goals brought the two  ideologies even closer together. While Hitler’s ideal was Aryan domination of  the world, the Brotherhood’s was Islamic domination of the world. For the time  being, Nazi Germany and the Muslim Brotherhood were great friends, united in  anti-Semitic and anti-British sentiment.

Hassan al-Banna was firmly committed to an alliance with Nazi Germany, as  well as Mussolini’s Fascist Italy. It was al-Husseini, however, who would be the  primary bridge figure between the Muslim  Brotherhood and the Germans. As early as 1933, he had assured the German  envoy to Palestine that he looked forward to the expansion of fascism and  anti-democratic governments to other countries. He used Nazi iconography  extensively in his Muslim youth groups, and in 1937, even met with Adolf  Eichmann to further cement the alliance. In 1941, he met Hitler himself, praising the Germans for “knowing how to get rid of Jews.” From his own  memoirs, and testimony from the Nuremberg war crimes trials, it has been  revealed that al-Husseini was planning an Auschwitz-style death camp near  Nablus. He also directly collaborated in blocking Jewish refugees from entering  Palestine, getting them sent to the death camps instead.

During the war, al-Husseini recruited three divisions of Bosnian Muslims for  the Waffen-SS, to serve in Yugoslavia. The largest, the 13th Waffen-SS Handzar  (Dagger) Division, became notorious for the swath of destruction they carved  through Yugoslavia, killing Jews, Gypsies and Serbian Christians.

Before and during the war, the Muslim Brotherhood and the Nazi Propaganda  Ministry cooperated extensively. Some of the common ground can still be seen in  Brotherhood propaganda today, especially as aimed against Jews.

al-Ikhwan al-Muslimeen - The Muslim Brotherhood

One of the Brotherhood’s chief ideologues, Sayyid Qutb, traveled to the US in  1949, returning to Egypt in 1950. Qutb was reportedly shocked by the support for  Israel he found in the US, and declared the US an enemy of Islam, going so far  as to speak of a “Jewish onslaught on Islam, with Christian complicity”. The US  has been a target for the Brotherhood ever since.

The Brotherhood opposed Communism during the Cold  War, though with their well-established antipathy toward the West,  this was largely because it was being repressed by Communist allies such as  Gamal Abdel Nasser in Egypt, which remained the Brotherhood’s headquarters.  During Nasser’s attempts to crush the Brotherhood, the organization fled to  Saudi Arabia several times and ties were established with the Wahabis. This led  to a considerably pronounced blending in both the ideology and strategy of the  movements.

The Brotherhood was instrumental in rallying fighters to go to Afghanistan to  fight the Soviets in 1979. Many of these Brotherhood-affiliated fighters have  become the jihadists fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and wherever other jihad fronts have opened up today.

Unlike the Saudi-sponsored Wahabis, the Brotherhood started underground and  has remained so for most of its existence. So have its offshoots: while the  Brotherhood has direct branches in just about every major Arab nation, there  have been a considerable number of its members who have considered it too slow  and too timid in pursuing its goals of global shariah. The Brotherhood has  always looked at the long game, using ruthless jihad when the circumstances  permitted it, but also playing nice with Arab governments when the circumstances  called for a slower, more moderate approach. Several of the offshoot groups  include Hamas,  Islamic Jihad, The National Islamic Front of Hassan Turabi in Sudan, Gamaat  Islamiya and Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Jamaat Islami and Abu Sayyaf.

Through Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the Brotherhood was involved in the  assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981 in retaliation for his signing the Camp  David Accords with Israel.

Many of the most notorious Islamic Terrorists of the last decades have been  members of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Blind Sheikh, Omar Abdel Rahman, was a  close student of Sayyid Qutb. Ayman al-Zawahiri started in the Muslim  Brotherhood and Egyptian Islamic Jihad before he joined Osama Bin Laden in Al  Qaeda. Many of Al Qaeda’s roots come from the Brotherhood, though it is  primarily an offshoot of the Wahabi movement in Saudi Arabia.

In 2012, in the aftermath of the Egyptian revolution against Mubarak, the  Brotherhood rose to a position of governmental authority in Egypt, for the first  time in its history. Muhammad Morsi was elected president, with the blessing of  Yusuf al Qaradawi, a prominent intellectual leader in the Brotherhood (though he  has refused any official leadership role). Qaradawi is on record praising  Hitler’s efforts to exterminate the Jews, and praying that Allah will grant the  Muslims the ability to finish what Hitler started.

Morsi’s first year as president was rocky and led to a considerable backlash  against the Brotherhood in Egypt, leading to his overthrow in June of 2013, and  the removal of the Brotherhood from power in the process. How this will affect  the Brotherhood’s long-term strategy remains to be seen; they have been in  existence for almost 95 years and are unlikely to go away overnight.

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3 thoughts on “The Muslim Brotherhood

  1. Pingback: The Muslim Brotherhood | raylanfear

  2. Just tired of reading about the killing of Christians, Jews and non believers throughout the World in the name of “Allah” by the radical Islamists who want the Quran and Sharia Law to be the law of the World, and will not stop. Where is the outcry in our Media and by our President? Folks, stand up and be counted, because when good men and women are silent and do nothing, then evil always wins. Look around you, in your cities, towns and governments, they want Sharia law in America. Don’t let this happen to your children and grandchildren. Read this:

  3. Pingback: Socialism is not the Answer | Calls for ‘Violent Jihad’ After Muslim Brotherhood’s ‘Fruitful’ State Department Meeting

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