SMSs, E.Mails For Weddings, Others, MB’s New Weapon in Egypt
SMSs, E.Mails For Weddings, Others, MB’s New Weapon in Egypt
Sunday, August 5,2007 00:00
By Amina Khairi

The Muslim Brotherhood (MB) group in Egypt has managed, since it was founded about eight decades ago, to tighten its grip on minds and hearts, and sometimes purses of huge sections of people, using intellect and sometimes exploiting sensitive issues that influence people. This grip has managed to hit more grounds to be in line with the age of the information technology.
This MB"s modernist spirit has been illustrated throughout the two previous days through mobile SMSs sent to thousands of mobiles stating:" Engineer Khairat Al-Shater invites you to the marriage contract ceremony of his daughter, Sara, at the Nasr City-based Al Arqm mosque at 5.00PM on August, 1st. The sender: Al Shater"s family.
The text message raised many question marks. The bride"s father is the second deputy chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood, engineer Khairat Al-Shater who is detained, along with others, on charges of funding the officially outlawed MB"s activities. Some hinted that the popular invitation to attend the marriage contract is a strategic tactic for rallying public support for Al Shater"s case .
This mobile SMS followed another message that Al Shater"s children wrote and sent to a number of independent newspapers, in which they detailed why their father approved that his daughter gets married while he is still in jail. The message reads:" Our happiness today is limitless and multi faced. It is a happiness for the marriage of "my beloved princess Sara, and that in a new family is to be formed under guidance of Islam despite all methods of harassment, prosecution and destruction. Add to this the happiness for public sympathy with the family".
These speeches in which politics is mixed with emotions, and the psychological influence is mixed with tactic cleverness turned the marriage contract into a new episode in the MB attempts to form a sympathetic and supporting public opinion.
The MB members are used also to sending SMSs and E.mails to journalists, media figures and intellectuals whenever one of their leaders is hosted in any Arab satellite channel so as to rally as much viewers for the show as possible. They may even rally support through writing articles, holding seminars or forums.
This electronic trend has clearly emerged among the group"s male and female members in the blogosphere, apparently to attract more young generations of Internet users, in addition to easy online discussions that aren"t easily tapped.
The Muslim Brotherhood"s online coalitions are a watershed point in the group"s course in Egypt. The cyberspace has proved to be an influential weapon for the group, especially in the campaigns in solidarity with its detained members.
However, the MB members" online efforts aren"t restricted to ordeals or even wedding. The MB online activities have become a life style and a method of thinking. For example the bride, Sara Khairat Al Shater, who got married yesterday is an online activist. She has pioneered in defending her father on the Web. She has called many times the Internet society to browse the blog named after her father and which was blocked from appearing on the cyberspace for unidentified reasons.
It is worth noting that five of Sara"s sisters got married or their marriage contracts were signed while their father was behind bars. The question is: Will photos and pictures of Sara"s marriage contract ceremony will be posted on the cyberspace or uploaded on YouTube for example to have more public view?. This what will be clear during the coming few hours in the Web on which many MB members tightened their strong grips on many websites and blogs.