The Muslim Brotherhood and political involvement
|Tuesday, March 9,2010 10:35|
|By Mohamed Habib|
Governments and regimes tend to adjust their rhythm when the public is vigilant. Islam calls on its followers to be actively engaged in the affairs of their societies.
Working in politics is both a right and a duty, not only for Muslims but for citizens in general--each according to his or her energy and capacity. To participate in politics should not be a right exclusive to political parties, but rather a realm in which every citizen can be involved. In fact, political involvement is a sign of positivity and concern for one's country.
Those engaged in political work need to have knowledge, and need to closely follow events--on the local, regional and international levels--with an analytical eye.
Today's open skies and extensive communication networks have diminished privacy to the extent that an event taking place in one spot in the world can have ramifications for other places on the globe.
But while political work has its attractions, the flip side of it is trouble and responsibility. Involvement becomes increasingly difficult in a political climate where ethics are lacking and struggles, tricks and unfair competition are rife. This explains why so many politicians suffer from stress, frustration, and even depression in some cases, in addition to other common physical conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes and irritable bowel syndrome.
But those who call for Islam and who abide by its teachings find the patience, steadfastness, determination, faith, and satisfaction recessary for their mission. These people, or most of them, live in never-ending joy. They have clear minds, are psychologically stable and enjoy a feeling of inner peace, despite the difficulties they meet along the way, which often cost them time away from families and can temporarily divert them from their mission.
The Muslim Brotherhood participates in politics to exercise their right and to fulfill their duty to their country. I believe that the Brotherhood is currently not considering competing for the presidency. The Brotherhood wishes to be represented in the People's Assembly, along with our fellow citizens, to fuel the inevitable and necessary reform process, which requires that we put an end to oppression, stem corruption, and end the current deterioration in all areas.
The Brotherhood believes that education, scientific research and technology, along with a comprehensive development program, should be the vehicle for progress.
Islam is both a religion and a civilization. When the Brotherhood carries out its political role, it does so guided by its understanding of Islamic rules and principals that reflect the identity of this nation. In this respect I would like to affirm that none of the Brotherhood members are sacred or infallible, and that they use their brains to reach a proper judgement and make appropriate choices--which may or may not be correct in the end.
Regarding whether the Muslim Brotherhood plans to form a party or not, I would say that this matter is related to the general political climate, which is characterized by parties that are crippled. Those parties have either been weakened as as result of a tight restriction on their performance, or due to their own flimsy internal structures and lack of vision.
Political parties' position on the Muslim Brotherhood and ElBaradei is only indicative of such weakness. It's in the interest of the Brotherhood to see those parties become stronger, because their strengthening will create new venues for political work, including for the Brotherhood.
The current status of political parties has prompted the creation of new reform and change movements that work outside of existing political parties. That said, there currently seems to be no incentive for establishing a party for the Brotherhood.
The Brotherhood, like all patriots, is aware that American-Zionist plans for the region threaten its security and seek to undermine the stability of our homeland. The Brotherhood will always stand opposed to those plans. The Brotherhood believes that the Zionist occupation of Palestine, the land of Arabs and of Islam, will continue to pose a threat to the entire nation
Therefore, all forms of jihad should be used and our internal problems should never deflect our attention from what is happening in Palestine. It's the destiny of Egypt, its people and government, to defend Arab causes and Egypt is capable of assuming such a role.
Finally, I would like to say that the regime has its own policies when it comes to dealing with the Brotherhood. The Brotherhood has its own "sensible and wise" mechanisms of dealing with the public, and the regime, for its part, has its own mechanisms that seek to suppress and alienate the Brotherhood from political life.
However, such a tense relationship between the regime and the Brotherhood cannot continue forever, because it will eventually reflect negatively on all parties. In fact, excluding a national faction that represents an ethical pillar necessary for a healthy society will only impede development.
I urge the wise in the regime to show tolerance and not to exclude any one party, because reform can't be carried out by a single party, no matter how important it is.
I hope my call does not fall on deaf ears, because the coming days may have much in store for us.