Dude, We Didn’t Say That
Dude, We Didn’t Say That
Sunday, August 3,2008 06:38
By Grandmasta

The Muslim Brotherhood’s Official website has an interesting article on a recent piece that was falsely attributed to them. 

Nawaal  Sadawi is an Egyptian feminist intellectual who, to put it bluntly, says stuff that angers conservative Islamist movements.   In response to some recent statements, the Islamic Group (Al-Jama’a Al-Islamiyya) issued a statement calling for her to be prosecuted for blasphemy.  The Muslim Brotherhood, always trying to prove its credentials as a mainstream movement,  is angry, quite understandably, because a Lebanese publication attributed the statement to the Brotherhood, and not the Islamic Group.  This is a pretty inexcusable mistake from an editing standpoint because in either Arabic in English its pretty hard to confuse “Islamic Group” and “Muslim Brotherhood.”   

But what’s most interesting is the description at the bottom of the article.  Clearly not happy with this false link to the Islamic Group, the writer goes further to distinguish between the two groups:

“Jam”a Islamiya (Islamic Group)is a radical group devoted to overthrowing the Egyptian regime through violent Jihad (although some of its leaders officially renounced violence in 2002.) The Muslim Brotherhood currently calls for an Islamic state through democratic means.

In a reaction to MENASSAT’s article, Muslim Brotherhood Secretary General Mahmoud Essat said,” We promote the freedom of thought, and never in the history of the Muslim Brotherhood { have} we prosecuted or called for the prosecution of writers.”

These two groups are long-time rivals and its interesting to see how they view each other.  The Islamic Group views the Muslim Brotherhood as sell-outs who gave up their principles in pursuit of power in the corrupting political process.   By contrast, at least according to this piece, the Ikhwan views the Islamic Group as violent fanatics, and disputes their claim to have abandoned violence. 

Grandmasta has had numerous posts  on the Islamic Group’s Ideological revisions.  He thinks they are serious, and would not agree that they are committed to violent jihad as this Ikhwan piece says. That being said, there should be no illusions about where the Islamic Group stands in the ideological spectrum of the Islamist movement, as this piece illustrates.  They are still hard-core, extreme religious fundamentalists.   Dr. Esposito  might want to  hold off on sending them an invitation to the next inter-faith dialogue conference at the Prince Alaweed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding.  Don’t waste money on postage;  they probaly don’t want to participate.  Still, hard-core fundamentalism is better than violent fanaticism.