EGYPT - The Challenges Of Terrorism - Part 3B - Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.With Egypt having slipped into a state of political uncertainty, the new climate poses serious risks for a republic which has gone 52 years without genuine democratic rule and where people have grown accustomed to strong leaders. Fear of authorities, a sentiment constantly reinforced by reports of systematic torture of political detainees and criminals, appears to have somewhat diminished in recent months, at least among opposition groups. The most serious opposition is the Muslim Brotherhood Muslim Brotherhood, officially Jamiat al-Ikhwan al-Muslimun [Arab.,=Society of Muslim Brothers], religious and political organization founded (1928) in Egypt by Hasan al-Banna. , a Salafi group which is the most organised and numerous among Egypt's political parties but which is banned by the state.
The Brotherhood's professions of faith, in the Hanbali school of Sunni theology (mathhab), are strongly inspired by the idea of a return to the faith of the "Devout Ancestors" (Salaf) of the community, although they are for the most part formulated on a plane and in terms very different from those of tradition and occasionally invoke the authority of non-Muslim scholars and philosophers in the cause of the jihad (struggle or holy war) against atheism atheism (ā`thē-ĭz'əm), denial of the existence of God or gods and of any supernatural existence, to be distinguished from agnosticism, which holds that the existence cannot be proved. .
The Salafis are extremely fanatic militants. They are motivated by neo-Islamic belief propagated by Sayyid say·yid
1. Used as a title and form of address for a male dignitary.
2. Used as a title for a descendant of the family of Muhammad. Qutub, a radical Muslim Brotherhood (MB) militant in Egypt executed in 1966 by the then president, Gamal Abdel Nasser Noun 1. Gamal Abdel Nasser - Egyptian statesman who nationalized the Suez Canal (1918-1970)
Nasser . Qutub remains enormously influential in the Muslim world The term Muslim world (or Islamic world) has several meanings. In a cultural sense it refers to the worldwide community of Muslims, adherents of Islam. This community numbers about 1.5-2 billion people, about one-fourth of the world. and is largely responsible for the rise of Osama Bin Laden Osama bin Laden: see bin Laden, Osama. and the latter's Al-Qaeda. Bin Laden's No. 2 in Al-Qaeda, Dr. Ayman Al-Zawahiri Ayman Muhammad Rabaie al-Zawahiri (Arabic: أيمن محمد ربيع الظواهر?) or closer to the original Arabic pronunciation who is an Egyptian medical doctor having emerged from the Muslim Brotherhood, is a staunch Qutubist.
Jihad, Qutub taught, would bring about the circumstances that would allow the restoration of the universal Caliphate caliphate (kăl`ĭfāt', -fĭt), the rulership of Islam;
caliph (kăl`ĭf'), the spiritual head and temporal ruler of the Islamic state. (hence Nasser's hostility) and the "subordination of the infidels" (non-Muslims) to a new Sunni empire. Salafis, notably including Wahhabis who rule in Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia (sä`dē ərā`bēə, sou`–, sô–), officially Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, kingdom (2005 est. pop. and Qatar, learn extremely strict but strangely applied piety and self-sacrifice, including if necessary self-sacrifice for suicidal combat.
These beliefs - at times effectively more sectarian than religious - make the anti-Western forces in Egypt extremely difficult for the Mubarak regime to tackle without the use of excessive force and torture. The MB militants have a violent history in Egypt and once fielded a secret army, including suicide killers Suicide Killers is a documentary exploring the motivations of a suicide bomber. It includes rare and never-before-seen interviews with family members of terrorists, widows of suicide bombers and surviving terrorists whose suicide attacks failed. . The history of suicide Suicide has been committed by people from all walks of life since the beginning of known history. Among the famous who have taken their own lives are Socrates, Boudicca, Brutus, Mark Antony, Cleopatra VII of Egypt, Judas Iscariot, Hannibal, Nero, Virginia Woolf, Sadeq Hedayat, Sigmund killing in the Muslim world goes back to the days of the Hashashin (assassins) who terrorised the Crusaders.
The Salafi forces in Iraq have proved to be so difficult for the US to deal with that their insurgency in·sur·gen·cy
n. pl. in·sur·gen·cies
1. The quality or circumstance of being rebellious.
2. An instance of rebellion; an insurgence.
1. has continued for almost two years. Placing no value on their own lives, or the lives of those they terminate, they are not susceptible to methods of military control used by Westerners, who presume that survival in combat is as important to their enemies as it is to themselves. Salafi suicide bombers have spread beyond Iraq into Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar (see news4bbGCCsalafiJan24-05, news7bbGCCterrorFeb14-05, & news14bbQatarDemoApr4-05).
Comparison With Iraq: Before going into the extent of the dangers which an all-out war between the MB and the Mubarak regime might pose, a brief focus into Iraq would help. Iraq now is the main hub of the Salafi jihad, be that against US forces, the local authorities, or the Shiites. A high level of terrorism indicates there has been no weakening in the morale and motivation of the jihadists, despite the recent arrest of many aides to Abu Mus'ab Al-Zarqawi, the Jordanian who heads Al-Qaeda's Iraq branch.
Nor has there been any noticeable improvement in the intelligence-collection capabilities of the US-led coalition in Iraq, despite periodic claims of the capture of terrorists of various Salafi groups. In an insurgency-affected situation, captured suspects are an important source of preventive intelligence; but apparently, despite such captures, the US intelligence continues to grope in the dark about the plans and preparations of the jihadists.
In Egypt the government forces would be in far better position to track jihadists down; but an all-out war would last a long time and may not end decisively in favour of a US-backed government.
There are two striking aspects of the situation in Iraq. On the one hand, there has been a steady flow of Salafi volunteers from inside Iraq and from other countries - mainly Syria, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, Kuwait, Jordan, Pakistan and Europe - for suicide missions. On the other hand, despite repeated suicide attacks against newly-raised Iraqi security forces Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) is the Multi-National Force-Iraq umbrella name for the military and police forces that serve under the Government of Iraq.
The armed forces are administered by the Ministry of Defense (MOD), and the Iraqi Police is administered by the Ministry of and Shiites, resulting in a big number of casualties, there does not seem to be a shortage of volunteers joining the US-backed Iraqi forces either. Even assuming that the majority of the volunteers on the Iraqi government side are Shiite Arabs and Kurds, the fact that they have not let themselves be intimidated by the suicide attacks is a positive factor in an otherwise bleak situation.