Skip to comments.Understanding the Muslim Brotherhood. Via its Genesis.
Posted on 11/29/2012 9:52:26 PM PST by Katechon
Hassan al-Banna (left), حسن البنا and Saïd Ramadan (right), سعيد رمضان
Al-Banna was born in Mahmudiya, Egypt, in 1906. [Biographical info here, ikhwanwiki arabic here, translated here].
He co-founded the Muslim Youth Association in 1927, restored the newspaper Al-Manar and the weekly al-Shehab, a magazine founded by Imam Abdul Hamid Ben Badis [more info here], and launched the Muslim Brotherhood in March 1928.
Al-Banna casted the Muslim Brotherhood's project as twofold: a) to resist Western colonialism (الاستعمار) in its attempt to conquer the peoples of muslim faith (الشعوب المسلمة), and b) to implement Islamic law (Sharia, الشريعة) in the affairs of life (شؤون الحياة).
The project of the Muslim Brotherhood is an islamic one (المشروع الإسلامي).
Al-Banna emphasized the universality of islam (شمولية الإسلام) and the importance of fighting all manifestations of moral decay and of alienation in society (مظاهر الانحلال الخلقي، وجميع مظاهر الاغتراب في المجتمع). The way of islam should be the way of life for all (ضرورة تطبيقه كمنهج حياة،). Al-Banna required complete submission to islam (الولاء الكامل للإسلام).
In the 1930s, al-Banna moved to Cairo. And by the advent of World War II the Muslim Brotherhood had grown enormously, attracting huge numbers of students, civil servants, urban labourers, and others elements of the egyptian landscape. It then spread rapidly throughout Sudan, Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, and North Africa.
(source) [See here about the organizational hierarchy of the muslim brotherhood]
The Muslim Brotherhood was established as a secret society.
Mahmoud Sabbagh (محمود الصباغ), an active member of the organization, wrote about the pledge of allegiance the members must make : "The brother will then be reminded that as long as he is a believer, he will be determined for jihad for allah, to work in the ranks of the Mujahideen. We take a pledge to jihad in the way of allah until islam is victorious or we perish without victory but with a commitment to secrecy and obedience."
The Brotherhood developped a paramilitary arm responsible for assassinations and terrorist attacks, secret formations of Fedayeen, prepared for jihad (جهده لإنشاء تشكيلات سريّة من الفدائيين، وإعدادها للجهاد).
In the late 1940s, Al-Banna led brigades of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1948 Palestine War to fight against the birth of Israeli State under the slogan "to die for allah is our loftiest aspiration.
Banna with Amin al-Husseini, Mufti of Palestine (source)
By the end of the 1940s, the Muslim Brotherhood had become a threat to the central authorities of Egypt. The New York Times described it in 1948 as "the largest terrorist organization in Egypt," and reported it was involved in "a series of bombings, political assassinations and attempted assassinations".
In 1948, al-Banna called for kings (الملوك) and rulers (الحكام) to implement Islamic law in the affairs of life, and preached for an islamic state (بالدولة الإسلامي) in the form of an islamic caliphate (الإسلامية في صورة الخلافة). "If the governments do not implement Sharia, then all Muslims are sinners (إذا لم تقم الحكومة الإسلامية فإن جميع المسلمين آثمون)," he said.
Members of the Brotherhood were implicated in a number of attacks and assassinations.
New York Times:
The following list of outrages was attributed to the terrorist organization: the explosion outside the house of [former Prime Minister]Mustapha El Nahas, president of the WAFD, early in the year; the attempted bombing of the Sudan Agency; bombing of department stores of Ades, Ben Zion, Gettegno, the Delta Land Company and the Société Orientale de Publicité and the most recent tommy-gun attempt on the life of Nahas Pasha.
On May 14, 1948, following the invasion of Palestine by Egypt and the proclamation of a state of siege, Nokrashy was appointed Military Governor of Egypt. And he tried to outlaw the Muslim Brotherhood.
According to the New York Times, the government of Nokrashy ordered "the dissolution of the Moslem Brotherhood" on December 9, 1948.
The Under Secretary of State for Security in the Ministry of Interior, reports the NYT "accused the Brotherhood of 'aiming at seizing power and overthrowing established order in the country'. He charged the Brotherhood with being responsible for a six months' series of bombings, assassinations and riots" and "proclaimed a 'state of emergency throughout Egypt' just before midnight as the police moved to surround the Brotherhood headquarters and post guards at all of its branches, estimated to number about 300."
The dissolution order closed and confiscated all of the Brotherhood's premises which include those of one daily and one weekly newspaper, several farm and manufacturing cooperatives and a group of medical dispensaries. Several units of volunteer irregulars in Palestine belonged to the Brotherhood.
Brotherhood members were forbidden to continue any form of political activity, and the Brotherhood's assets were liquidated.
Soon after, Prime Minister Nokrashy was assassinated by members of the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Egyptian government had al-Banna assassinated the following day.
Mayor Mahmoud Abdul Majeed was involved in the plot against Banna (source)
Encyclopedia Britannica "estimated that at its height in the late 1940s [the Muslim Brotherhood] may have had some 500,000 members."
Few people realize that Osama bin Laden got his radical political indoctrination from the MB ...
After Osama’s father died, the eldest son became the head of the family. When it was time for Osama to attend high school, his brother [as head of the family] decided against sending him to a posh boarding school, like Eton. Many bin Ladens had gone there in the past.
Instead, his brother sent Osama to an elite private school in Lebanon - HOWEVER, this school was dominated by radical teachers that were in the MB. Osama had never been particularly political up to this point - but all that changed under the tutelage of these teachers.
Read “The Bin Ladens”, by Steve Coll - FASCINATING book about the family ...
Hahah! Thank you very much.
Its not a lie - Osama was HEAVILY influenced by his teachers and was inspired to go to Afghanistan to fight the Russians in the 1980’s because of this political indoctrination. And, Osama was pretty much an outlier in his family because of his radical beliefs ...
As for the rest of the family [all 52 brothers and sisters], they were pretty much Middle Eastern capitalists - their company [bin Laden Construction] were the builders for the Saudi royal family. Made BEAUCOUP bucks and SPENT it like no tomorrow ...
When they wanted to play and party, they would jet out of Saudi Arabia to Europe or the US. On the way back, however, they would don traditional garb [especially the women] and get off the plane like nothing happened out-of-country ...
it sounds pretty true. And it’s very interesting.
I have no doubt that if indeed Osama went to a MB school, then that’s surely the roots of it.
Do you remember the name of that school? Was it in Tripoli?
Well, he as a child, he went we dont know every year of his schooling, but possible to get a glimpse of him being sent off to boarding school at a Quaker school in Lebanon, where a number of his siblings went. That didnt seem to take at about age eight or nine. Perhaps he just didnt like being away from home. In any event, he came back to Jeddah and enrolled at about age twelve or thirteen in the only truly international standard school in Saudi Arabia, a prep school, a day school in Jeddah called the Al-Thagher Model School. And it was modeled on a British boarding school. The boys it was all boys, and the boys wore grey slacks and blue blazers, and they assembled on the yard every morning, and they played soccer. And they had teachers from England and Ireland to teach them English, and they had a modern scientific and math curriculum. And in that school, some of the teachers were Syrians and Egyptians affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, an international sort of Islamist network started as an anti-colonial movement in Egypt. By the time that Osama encountered these teachers, it was a sort of a source of organizing and political dissent in the Arab world, built around Islamist revolutionary ideas. Hamas today is an expression of the Muslim Brotherhood, to get a sense of its character. And these teachers, typical of the way the Muslim Brotherhood worked, looked for elite students and recruited them at school in after-school study groups, and Osama was recruited by his Syrian gym teacher into such a group at about age thirteen or fourteen and was essentially radicalized there, being taught a particularly political form of conservative Islamic theology. Thats the difference between the Muslim Brotherhood and, say, normal Saudi conservative orthodoxy, is that the Brotherhood has a political vision of changing governments. And Osama was indoctrinated in those views from a young age. "
Actually, I got it wrong - he went to Al Thagher High School in Jedda, Saudi Arabia [very elite school].
Anyway - read the book. It has MANY interesting hypocrisies about the family. Including the fact that his brother [head of the family] LOVED to eat pork BBQ when he was in the US ...
How he learned radicalism, and may have seen America.
"Osama bin Laden's old school-the Al Thagher Model School-sits on several dozen arid acres near downtown Jedda, the Saudi Arabian port city where bin Laden spent most of his childhood and teen-age years. During the 1960s and 1970s (bin Laden graduated in 1976), Al Thagher was the most prestigious high school in Jedda, and, compared with other schools in Saudi Arabia, it had a relatively secular flavor. It was founded in the early 1950s, with support from Faisal bin Abdul Aziz, who became king in 1964. The school showcased Faisal's interest in science and Western methods of education. The curriculum included English-language instruction, yet it also adhered to Islamic ritual. From interviews with people who knew Osama as a teenager a portrait of his high-school years has emerged, one that may help explain the earliest sources of his beliefs. Osama enrolled in Al Thagher in 1968 [...] During the 8th or 9th grade, around 1971 or 1972, Osama was invited to join an afternoon Islamic study group led by a young Syrian teacher. It is there that Osama received his first formal education in the precepts of violent jihad. It was common to find Syrian or Egyptian teachers at Saudi high schools and universities. Some of these teachers were members of, or influenced by, the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist organization which works to replace secular and nationalist Arab leaders with Islamic governments. Formal political activity was banned in Saudi Arabia, so the Brotherhood-influenced teachers often introduced their students informally to precepts of Islamic activism and violent jihad. One of Osama's former schoolmates recalled his experience in the Al Thagher study group. At first, the group spent only a few minutes memorizing the Koran; the rest of the session was spent playing soccer. Gradually, they spent more and more time inside, discussing hadiths-interpretive stories about the Prophet Muhammad. The stories the Syrian teacher told became increasingly violent. Recalls one story about a boy who found God and shot his secular father. Osama's schoolmate stopped attending the study group. Over the next few years, he watched as Osama and others in the group openly adopted the styles and convictions of teen-age Islamic activists. In addition to Batarfi's work as a Saudi journalist and commentator, he has emerged as a source of detailed, firsthand information about bin Laden's teen-age years. Batarfi describes witnessing Osama's emergence, in the early 1970s, as a committed schoolyard Islamic activist, greatly influenced by the Brotherhood. Bin Laden's years at Al Thagher appear to have been an intellectual prelude to his better-known experiences at King Abdul Aziz University in the late 1970s. His early exposure to the Brotherhood's ideas and recruiters may help to explain why later, in Afghanistan, he was attracted to the causes of so many Egyptian exiles."
Jew Hatred and jihad
The Nazi roots of the 9/11 attack.
Bookmark and a belated welcome to FR.
I did mention it. Rapidly, via the MB’s implication in Palestine against Israel.
But many thanks for the picture of the Mufti in relevant company!
Said Ramadan joined the Muslim Brotherhood when he was 14. After graduating from Cairo University, he became al-Banna's personal secretary. A year later, Ramadan was named editor of the Muslim Brotherhood weekly, Al Shihab, and he married al-Banna's daughter. Ramadan will become the Muslim Brotherhood's international organizer, from Pakistan to Switzlerland, Palestine to Boston.
The litte islamo-fascist lead brigades in the Palestine war. And he was a great friend of the Mufti on your picture!
Probing the History of the Muslim-Nazi Alliance
Nazism in the Middle East started when the German Nazi Party founded an Egyptian section of the NSDAP/AO (the international Nazi organization). They distributed anti-Semitic literature and attempted to set up an Arabic press service. Initially these initiatives met with little success. The Nazis first effective step was to have the German textile industry threaten to boycott Egyptian cotton. The Egyptian government bowed to the Third Reichs pressure and began oppose the anti-Nazi boycott of German goods, and promised to introduce measures against Egyptian Jews. The government press began to attack Jews as wreckers of the Egyptian economy. In secret meetings with the German embassy, the Egyptian government promised cooperation with the Nazis against Egyptian Jews. In return, the Reich opened a branch of the German News Agency in Cairo, and by 1938, German became the second largest importer of Egyptian goods.
The Egyptian public was impressed by the propaganda about Germanys economic progress and Nazi mass marches. The pro-fascist Young Egypt movement was founded in 1933. They mimicked the Berlin rallies with paramilitary rallies in Cairo. Along with the Muslim Brotherhood, they came to dominate the street scene and became a third center of Egyptian politics, alongside parliament and the king.
The Cairo Nazi group adopted as a central strategic goal the creation of Jew-hatred in Egypt, in order to win popularity for Nazism, and to undermine the survival of Jews in the Middle East. In a report to the Third Reichs Foreign Office, the Cairo Nazi group wrote that their campaigns for the creation of an anti-Jewish mood among the Arab population was meeting with small success, and that their new strategy would be to exploit the conflict between Arabs and Jews in Palestine, which must be transplanted to Egypt.
In April 1936, the Third Reich financed a series of anti-Jewish riots in Palestine and attacks on British targets, dubbed the Arab Revolt, working with their ally, the Mufti of Jerusalem. This murder of 400 Jews and thousands of Arabs met with complete success when the British government denied Jews their League of Nations mandated right of asylum in Palestine, in order to stop the riots and sabotage. When the Final Solution began to be implemented, Jews were trapped in Europe, as they no longer had their League of Nations national home in Palestine. The violence against Jews in Palestine was also a pivotal success for the Third Reich in Egypt.
The Muslim Brotherhood received funds from the Third Reich via the German Legation in Cairo. This enabled them to set up a modern printing plant with 24 employees, and use the most current Nazi propaganda methods. In 1938, the mainstream Egyptian press still resisted participating in this anti-Jewish campaign, but slowly the Muslim Brotherhood, funded by the Third Reich and adopting Nazi techniques, profoundly increased anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism in Egypt, and promoted their fusion of fascism and Islam.
Intervention in Egypt by Nazi Germany increases
In 1937, German Foreign Minister von Neurath spelled out the Reichs strategy in a memo, following the Peel Commissions plan to create a Palestinian and Jewish state side by side: German therefore has an interest in strengthening the Arab world as a counterweight against such a possible increase in power for world Jewry. Arab countries, including Egypt, received German scholarships, German firms took in Arab apprentices, Arab party leaders were invited to Nuremberg party rallies, and military chiefs were invited to Wehrmacht manoevres. An Arab Club was established in Berlin.
The German Propaganda Ministry started Arab-language broadcasts of the Nazi message throughout the Middle East. The head of the German News Agency in Jerusalem, Dr. Franz Reichert, bribed journalists and co-opted newspapers with lucrative advertising contracts.
Adolf Eichman and another member of the SS Jewish Department traveled to the Middle East in September 1937 to distribute funds and work with Nazi collaborators. Baldur von Schirach, the leader of Hitler Youth, and William Canaris, the head of Abwehr (the counter-intelligence service) spent extended visits organizing Nazi collaboration. In April 1939, Otto von Hentig, the head of the Foreign Offices Oriental Division, spent time in Egypt. The funds and contacts they established resulted in a spy network throughout the Middle East, and the recruitment of men for anti-Jewish violence in Palestine. German weapons were sent through secret channels, primarily for killing off the Jewish homeland in Palestine.
National Socialism was finding an enthusiastic audience among young Arab leaders throughout the Middle East at this time. Sami al-Jundi, a leader of the Syrian Baath party said: We were racists, admiring Nazism, read its books and the source of its thought. These Arab intellectuals were not put off by the Aryan racial superiority credo of National Socialism; they translated it into their own terms, the superiority and world domination of Islam. They related better to the German idea of the Volk, based on language, blood and culture, than to modern nationalism.
In Egypt in 1933, Ahamd Husayn started the Young Egypt movement, which was modeled closely on the German Nazi party. A delegation went to Germany for the 1936 Nuremberg Nazi party rally. Husayn adopted Nazisms rabid anti-Semitism, and taught his young followers that Jews were responsibility for cultural decadence and moral decay.
The Muslim Brotherhood was aligned with the Nazis in a variety of ways. They distributed Mein Kampf in Arabic. They collaborated with the Third Reichs agents in Egypt and with Young Egypts leaders in planning an anti-British uprising to support the German war against Britain. The German secret services recruited members for the Muslim Brotherhoods paramilitary wing. The Muslim Brotherhood did not follow National Socialisms race policies, which were at odds with their concept of universal Islamic brotherhood. Hassan al-Banna did not hold up a non-Muslim, Adolf Hitler, as a model. He did praise and admire the elements of Nazism and fascism that were part of his own agenda: the suppression of women, militarism, state domination of the economy, world conquest through jihad and anti-Semitism.
The fascist and Nazi elements of the Muslim Brotherhoods program included: total rejection of liberal democracy, subordination of the individual to the state, attacks on both capitalism and communism, male supremacy, sexual repression, celebration of the art of death and obsessive hatred and murder of Jews. In the Egyptian context, the Muslim Brotherhood called for the dissolution of parliament, establishment of sharia law and the Caliphate, the abolition of interest and profit, the closing of the stock exchange, nationalization of the banks, land seizure, the glorification of factories and labor discipline, a strong industrial-military program, global military supremacy and Islamic world rule. The movement opposed the material seductions of the free enterprise system, which they labeled Jewish, and expressed this belief by burning cinemas, nightclubs and brothels.
1939 and later
From 1939 on, Nazi Germanys Propaganda Ministry reached directly to Egyptians with their Arab language broadcasts, called the Zeesen service. Arabic was their top priority foreign language propaganda broadcasts, with a staff of 80. From 1941, they had daily broadcasts by the Nazi supporter Amin el-Husseini, the former Mufti of Jerusalem. Husseini fled to Berlin in 1941 after staging a pro-German putsch in Iraq, and was given a staff of 60 Arabs to serve the cause of the Third Reich. He had a great influence in Egypt, directly through his Nazi broadcasts, and through the support of the Muslim Brotherhood. At that time, Egyptians did not own radios in their own homes; tey listened in coffee house, bazaars and public squares. The Nazi radio station was the most popular, because of its mix of Koranic verses, Arabic music and antisemitic hate. Amin el-Husseini listed seven elements that he claimed Islam and Nazism shared: the leadership principle; obedience; the honor of dying in battle; the collective before the individual; motherhood as the role for women; glorification of work; and attitude toward Jews.
When the United States entered the war, he declared, The Americans are the willing slaves of the Jews and as such the enemies of Islam and the Arabs. He drafted as statement in 1940 for a German-Italian declaration that read: Germany and Italy recognize the right of Arab countries to resolve the question of the Jewish elements in the same way as the Jewish question has been resolved in Germany and Italy. The Final Solution was underway at this time.
Since World War II research in Germany has continued in the archives of the Nazi regime, uncovering the centrality of anti-Semitism to National Socialism, and following the continuity of the Nazi regime and its influences beyond 1945 Europe. A telling example of this new research has uncovered the existence of plans for a Final Solution in the Middle East, beginning in Egypt. Since the summer of 1942, an SS special unit was on standby in Athens, ready to implement the Shoah in Palestine in alliance with the Nazis Arab allies following an anticipated victory by Rommel in the North African theatre.
Minutes from a meeting in Berlin between Hitler and Amin el-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem, from the archives of the Third Reich, read: The Furhrer then made the following statement to the Mufti, 1. He (the Führer) would carry on the battle to the total destruction of the Judeo-Communist empire in Europe 2. At some moment which was impossible to set exactly today but which in any event was not distant, the German armies would in the course of this struggle reach the southern exit of Caucasia 3. As soon as this had happened, the Führer would on his own give the Arab world the assurance that the hour of liberation had arrived. Germanys objective would then be solely the destruction of the Jewish element residing in the Arab sphere under the protection of the British power .The moment that Germanys tank divisions and air squadrons had made their appearance south of the Caucasus, the public appeal requested by the Grand Mufti could go out to the Arab world The Grand Mufti replied whether it would not be possible, secretly, at least, to enter into an agreement with Germany of the kind he had just outlined for the Führer. The Führer replied that he had just now given the Grand Mufti precisely that confidential declaration.
In the course of constant round-trips between the Middle East and Berlin, the Mufti worked especially closely with the Muslim Brothers in Egypt. He reported directly to Hitler on his successes in uniting the Arab world in hatred of Jews. I believe in the Muslim Brothers as they are the troops of God who shall defeat the troops of Satan, he declared after the war. Al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim brotherhood began working with el-Husseini in 1927 The Muslim Brothers from Egypt intervened in the struggles in Palestine between the moderates, led by the Nashashibi clan and the Nazi-funded violence of el-Husseini, which reached a crescendo 1936-1939. There were many Palestinian Arabs who welcomed westernization, modernization and cooperation with their Jewish neighbors, and welcomed the Peel Commission plan to divide Palestine into two states, one Arab and one Jewish. This was not limited to an educated elite. Many village sheikhs in Judea and Galilee rejected el-Husseinis anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, and signed petitions supporting Jewish immigration to the country. They were motivated by economic benefits, and long, cordial relations with Jewish Palestinians.
It was in this context that the Egyptian al-Banna intervened. Within Egypt, they exploited the riots to expand their numbers through antisemitic propaganda. In Palestine, the Egyptian Muslim Brothers used the unrest to promote their Islamic fascist agenda. They blocked aid from Egypt reaching the Nashashibi clan. They called on their followers in Palestine to slay all members and supporters of the Nashashibis in Allahs name. They supported the Muftis terror campaign and publicized it in Egypt as a signal for jihad.
In Cairo, the Brotherhood invited representatives from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to a conference, called the Parliamentary Conference for Arab and Islamic Countries, to support the work of el-Husseini in Palestine. This conference was the first anti-Zionist initiative by the Moslem Brothers to receive Egyptian government support. The Brotherhood distributed Mein Kampf and the Protocols of the Elder of Zion. It was a milestone in the turning of the Egyptian government away from their policy of promoting tolerance for Jews in Egypt and for a Jewish homeland in Palestine. At the conference, Cairo threatened to ally with the Axis powers.
This conference was a turning point for British policy in promoting a two-state solution in Palestine, via the Peel Commission proposal. One month after the Cairo conference, in November 1938, the same month as Kristalnacht, the Peel proposal for a divided Palestine with a homeland for both Jews and Arabs was withdrawn. The Egyptian governments cooptation by the Islamic movement, and the Islamization of the Palestine conflict were seen as important threats to Britainss good relations in the Arab world, and the stability of Britains source of oil. With the threat of German aggression looming on the horizon, despite the first round-up of Jews in Berlin into slave labor camps, the Jewish acceptance of ten percent of the original Palestinian Mandate as their homeland, Britain dropped the partition policy. It would not be renewed until 1947, by the United Nations, after the annihilation of Europes Jews was completed by the Third Reich. The Nazi-Arab alliance had succeeded, due in large measure to the work of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
The role of the Third Reich in instigating the riots in Palestine was well understood in Britain. Winston Churchill spoke in the House of Commons against the response to Arab/Nazi violence of closing the Palestinian Mandate to Jewish immigration. So far from being persecuted, the Arabs have crowded into the country and multiplied till their population has increased more than even all world Jewry could lift up the Jewish population. We are now asked to submit, and this is what rankles most with me, to an agitation which is fed with foreign money and ceaselessly inflamed by Nazi and by Fascist propaganda.
The violence in Palestine in 1936-9 was directed even more strongly against Arab moderates. More Arabs were tortured and killed than British or Jewish Palestinians. Dress codes and sharia law was enforced by armed thugs, who roved the streets, kidnapping and murdering pro-western Palestinians. Middle-class professionals were shot through the head for not wearing the kaffiyeh, the Arab head scarf. They were not always immediately murdered; sometimes they were kidnapped and taken to mountainous areas under rebel control. There they were thrown into pits infested with snakes and scorpions. After spending a few days there, the victims, if still alive, were brought before one of the rebel courts and usually sentenced to death, or as a special dispensation, to severe flogging. The terror was so strong that no one, including uluma and priests, dared to perform proper burial services. The corpses of the victims would be left in the street for days, a shoe stuck in their mouth, as a lesson for any Arab who believed in tolerating a Jewish homeland.
The Mufti continued to work for the Third Reich in Berlin until the last days of the war. In April 1945 he received 50,000 marks from the Foreign Office. Yugoslavia placed el-Husseini on the war crimes list, to be tried at Nuremberg. He had personally organized the Muslim SS division that had murdered thousands of Serbs, Croats and Jews. He fled to Paris, and was facing extradition, when the Muslim Brotherhood intervened, petitioning and threatening Britain, France and the United States. Hassan al-Banna sent the following memorandum to the American minister, when the United States supported Britains application to have el-Husseini sentenced: We, in the name of the Muslim Brothers and all Arabs and Muslims, would like to warn your government not to continue this unjust Zionist policy We would also like you to confirm to your government our preparedness to sacrifice ourselves for the sake of rescuing our men. The Arab League endorsed the Muslim Brothers threats, and Yugoslavia, France, Britain and America all proved unwilling to displease the Arab world. The decision was made not to try the Mufti for war crimes.
On June 10, 1946, King Farouk granted him asylum. Whereas the German Nazis had to flee incognito and change their identities for life, el-Husseini received a heros welcome in Egypt and Arab Palestine. In 1947, al-Banna appointed el-Husseini his deputy in the Moslem Brothers in Egypt, and leader of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine. Back in Cairo, el-Husseini re-established his paramilitary youth organization, al-Futuwwa, and lobbied the Arab League to make permanent their rejection of a two-state solution for Palestine. P46. The Muslim Brothers considered his direct work for the Nazi regime, and leadership in the murder of thousands of Balkan Jews, including 5,000 children, a source of pride, not shame. That he alone of the captured top Nazi leadership was not tried and punished, increased his prestige among Arabs.
The Mufti was not the only Nazi war criminal who found sanctuary in Egypt. The number of Nazi officers who could continue their war against the Jews in Egypt is estimated at several thousand.
In Europe and America after 1945, Nazism and antisemitism were totally discredited. In complete contrast, in the 1940s radical Islamists in the Middle East, led by the Muslim Brothers, hatred of Jews as Jews acquired striking respectability. The history of Nazism does not end in 1945 in the Middle East. It underwent permutations as it was adapted to the Islamic radical mindset, and flourished in the Arab world for decades, until the present time. The radical anti-Semitism of the Nazi regime was adopted by Hassan al-Banna and his successor Sayyid Qutb, to reinforce and popularize their extremist interpretations of the Koran.
The inculcation of Nazi anti-Semitism into the Egyptian population was a permanent outcome of the Third Reichs war efforts Egyptian society had been listening to daily radio broadcasts from Nazi Germany since 1939, weekly antisemitic publications of the Muslim Brotherhood, as well as their paramilitary rallies and Friday sermons, the fascistic rallies of Young Egypt, and the secret activities of the Cairo office of the Nazi party. The lies that Jews were controlling with world and threatening Islam were widely taken as truth. Post-war Egypt was infused with pro-German sentiment.
During the war, there was a popular street song, Allah in heaven, Hitler on earth. Gamal Abdel Nasser and Anwar as-Sadat, later presidents of Egypt, as members of the Egyptian General Staff during the war offered their support to Rommel. It was estimated by a secret report during the war that 90% of Egyptian intellectuals and government employees supported the Axis powers over the West.
Fleeing Nazi officers were given asylum in Egypt to continue their war against the Jews. Holocaust denial was the enforced public ideology. The anti-Jewish holy war (was) pursued simultaneously in three areas the villages of Palestine, the cities of Egypt and the headquarters of the United Nations.
Americans in the post-war period were very aware of the Arab role in supporting the Third Reich in both Europe and the Middle East. In 1947, with memories of Nazism fresh in their minds, the Hon. Robert Wagner, mayor of New York, with Fiorella LaGuardia, Paul Tillich, Prof. Reinhold Neibuhr, and two dozen other prominent citizens, published a slender report entitled The Arab War Effort. The tendency to forget the lessons of the past has always been one of mans most dangerous characteristics, the report begins:
One of those hard earned lessons is simply this: that appeasement does not work. The enemies of human freedom could neither be bribed nor cajoled. Yet now in 1947 we seem to be returning to the policy of appeasement in dealing with precisely those Arabs leaders who did their utmost to aid the Axis powers. It is not claimed that the facts stated in this document constitute a revelation. They do not appear to be in dispute in any responsible quarter. There seems, however, to be a tendency to ignore them as not longer politically relevant. This (is) unfortunate, for the data herewith presented point to conclusions that are still valid with regard to the political reasoning prevalent among the Arab peoples.
Mayor Wagner and his co-authors wrote that the Arab populace, not simply a few leaders, were enthusiastic supporters of the Nazis: sympathy with the Axis powers were widespread among the common people of the Arab countries these feelings permeated the majority of the population, while the leaders often cooperated directly with the Axis. Fascist and Nazi ideologies were not so much imitated as paralleled in the Arab world; they fitted into modes of thought already in being and were taken up by existing political clubs and associations.
On November 29, 1947, for the second time the Palestinian Arabs were offered a state of their own, next to a Jewish state. As in 1937, the Palestinian Jews accepted the division, and al-Husseini, still in Egypt, rejected it on behalf of the Palestinian Arabs. Hajj Amin made it clear to other Arab leaders that, as soon as British forces were withdrawn, the Arabs should with one accord fall upon the Jews and destroy them. New archival findings show that other Arab leaders expressed acceptance of the partition of the Palestinian Mandate into a Jewish and Palestinian Arab state, but only in private. These included Abdullah, the Emir of Jordan; Abdd al-Rahman Azzam, the head of the Arab League; the Egyptian Prime Minister, Sidqi Pasha; and Prime Minister of Iraq, Muzahim al-Pashashi, who expressed the fear that publicly voicing his support for a Jewish state would cause a revolt in Iraq.
They were cowed by the power of the Muslim Brothers. There was an anti-Jewish demonstration of 100,000 Muslims in Egypt, applauding speeches calling for bloodletting, and destroying Jewish and European buildings. In 48 hours, the Brothers recruited 2000 fighters to prevent the creation of a Palestinian and Jewish state.
On May 14, 1948, Egypt joined Jordan, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon in ordering their armies to attack the newly proclaimed state of Israel, only a few hours old. The General Secretary of the Arab League declared, in Islamizied terms familiar from the Third Reich, this war will be a war of annihilation and lead to a terrible massacre, about which people will speak in the future as they do about the massacres of the Mongols or Crusaders.
In Egypt, where previous to the Nazi propaganda machine there had been no anti-Semitism, on the night of May 14 arrested 2,000 Jews. There were also innumerable assaults on individuals, instigated by members of the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Brotherhood was a threat to the Egyptian constitutional government following Egypts defeat by the Israelis in January 1949. The Brotherhood had reached the million member mark. It owned factories, had its own weapons, schools, hospitals, military units. A Muslim Brother murdered the Prime Minister, Mahmud Fahmi al-Nugrashi.
Fighting for its own survival, the Egyptian government banned the Brotherhood, systematically persecuted members and assassinated al-Banna in the street, in February 1949. Arrested members continued to radicalize their message in the prisons, while exiled members spread their form of Nazified fanatical Islam throughout the Middle East.
In Iran, the future Ayathollah Khomeini came under the influence of representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood, discussing al-Bannas writings with them for days at a time. He became a daily listener to the Persian-language broadcasts of the Third Reich from Zeesen, along with a large group of mullahs who would gather on his terrace every evening to listen to the German broadcasts.
Both the Muslim Brothers and the Mufti Of Jerusalem, el-Husseini were funded and trained by the Third Reich, although only Husseini was a Nazi and a member of the Reich leadership. Their success depended on the other. In this wartime alliance, al-Banna operated as a warlike priest using the Palestinian conflict to unite the Islamic world for a new Caliphate, while the Mufti acted as a sophisticated tactician pursuing mass politics with the most modern means of propaganda sharia terror and the formation of gangs . It was this interplay between the Egyptian-urban and the Palestinian-rural elements that helped the Banna-Husseini tandem to extend its influence through the Arab world.
The issue of Palestine was crucial for al-Banna in recruiting Egyptians to his cause of rejecting modernization and reviving jihad because he was able, through false claims that the Jews were attacking al-Aqsa mosque and desecrating the Koran, in turning it into a holy war, that would justify martyrdom and bring the promise of heaven. Within Palestine, moderate Arabs, led by the Nashashibi clan rejected al-Bannas anti-western, anti-prosperity campaign. They preferred a homeland of their own, with neighboring a Jewish state. Here, al-Banna succeeded through el-Husseinis success in murdering, torturing and silencing Arab moderates.
Al-Bannas major contribution was to define the cohesion of the Arab world by opposition to Israel. Hatred of the Jews has become the most important shared bond. The antisemitism of the Muslim Brotherhood is not an ancillary feature of modern jihadism. Starting in 1936 it became the core feature. Before 1936, there were different groups blamed for the destructive force of modernization and the liberation of women: Communists, the West, Christian missionaries, Arab hedonists, Zionists, the Suez Canal Company. Al-Bannas rage at change had interchangeable targets. In 1936, the Jews became the culprit and the rallying cry. Al-Banna culled the Koran for passages hostile to Jews, mingled with his false photos of Moslems tortured by Jews, false rumors of Jewish threats to Islam, elements borrowed from Nazi antisemitism, Mein Kampf and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion conspiracy theories about Jews. By 1945, this had matured into a Nazi-inspired world conspiracy theory and annihilationist antisemitism. Holocaust denial was disseminated, and Jews were made into fearful symbols of world domination by the decadent West. The ideological convergence of the Muslim Brothers and National Socialism reached its culmination. The delusion suppressed in Germany after May 8, 1945, found its most fruitful exile in the Arab world, where the Muslim Brothers now disposed of a million followers.
In the decades that followed, al-Bannas heritage, this convergence of Islamic fascism and Nazi antisemitism continued to develop and spread, underground in the 1950s and 60s, and with the support of Abdel Nasser after the humiliating Egyptian defeat in the 67 War.
Gamal Abdel Nasser
Gamal Abdel Nasser as a teenager was a member of the Young Egypt movement, which modeled itself on National Socialism, with fascist salutes, torchlight processions, mass marches modeled on those of Nazi Germany and a cult of the leader. In the 1940s, his career was launched under the patronage of the Hitlers most prominent supporter in Egypt, General Aziz al-Misri. Al-Misri was friends with al-Banna, who arranged meetings in 1941 between him and Nassers friend, Anwar as-Sadat. In 1941 Sadat joined the Muslim Brotherhoods military wing. In 1943 Nasser and other Egyptian army officers joined. From 1943 to 1948, they had weekly meetings with the Brotherhoods military chief, Mahmud Labib, and took part in clandestine military training.
The July 22 Free Officers coup brought Nasser to power, and of the 14 putschists, ten had declared their loyalty to the Muslim Brothers. The new rulers made no secret of their Nazi sympathies Egypt became the El Dorado of former Nazis who decamped there in droves in the 1950s. The Free Officers welcomed them with open arms. Anwar as-Sadat, in 1953, wrote a public tribute to Hitler: My dear Hitler, I congratulate you from the bottom of my heart .you may be proud of becoming the immortal leader of Germany a new Hitler rises up in your wake.
In an interview in Deutsche Nationalzeitung, in 1964, Nasser reiterated his support for Nazi Germany and denied the Holocaust, in these words: During the Second World War, our sympathies were with the Germans The lie of the six million murdered Jews is not taken seriously by anybody.
This was a more radical brand of Muslim Brotherhood Islam that evolved under the influence of Sayid Qutb (pronounced Kootup), who rose to leadership in the organization in 1952. In Qutbs influential brand of Islamic fascism, there is only one primary enemy of islam: the Jew. His 1950 text, Our Struggle with the Jews, was republished in 1970 and disseminated world wide by Saudi Arabia. It is a seamless blend of traditional Islamic Jew-hatred, supported by Koranic texts, and Nazi antisemitic conspiracy theories. Qutb wrote: the Jews again returned to evil-doing and consequently Allah brought Hitler to rule over them.
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