The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has criticized as ridiculous and false the statement made yesterday by the President Barack Obamas Director of the National Intelligence Board, James Clapper, that the extremist, Islamist Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is a largely secular movement. During a House Intelligence Committee hearing yesterday, Mr. Clapper said, The term Muslim Brotherhood … is an umbrella term for a variety of movements, in the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence and has decried Al Qaeda as a perversion of Islam They have pursued social ends, a betterment of the political order in Egypt, et cetera In other countries, there are also chapters or franchises of the Muslim Brotherhood, but there is no overarching agenda, particularly in pursuit of violence, at least internationally.
As ZOA has already pointed out, the Muslim Brotherhood collaborated with Nazi Germany and was the precursor of Al Qaeda. It assassinated many rivals, already in the 1940s, including an Egyptian prime minister. Last year, its leader, Muhammad Badi, spoke enthusiastically of jihad and called for a state based on Islamic law. He also spoke optimistically about the U.S. heading for a collapse. His second-in-command, Rashad Al-Bayoumi, this week emphasized abrogating the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty.
The Muslim Brotherhood platform, leaked in August 2007, calls for jihad, states that Islam is the official state religion and Islamic sharia is the main source for legislation. It also states that the president and legislative branch will be advised by clerics, who must approve decisions and that non-Muslims will be barred from the presidency, which is also held to be unsuitable for women. The Brotherhoods slogan is Islam Is The Answer. Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood both seek a new Caliphate and their disagreement has been over tactics, not goals. Under repression in Egypt, the Brotherhood renounced violence domestically, but not globally and, in particular, not against Israel, against whom it calls for jihad.
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, There is abundant evidence of the extremism, violence and radical Islamist character of the Muslim Brotherhood, both today and throughout its history. It is stunning to see a senior intelligence official like the Director of the National Intelligence Board, who personally briefs President Obama, expressing such provably untrue ideas. The fact that Mr. Clapper has somewhat backed away from this statement does not change the seriousness of his original statement. His false claims about the Brotherhood simply adds to the nonsensical statement about the Muslim Brotherhood from another Obama adviser, Bruce Riedel, who has argued that America should not be afraid of the Muslim Brotherhood.
All this provides further evidence that the Obama Administration is ignoring the dangers and ideology of radical extremist Muslims.