Deliberate Deceptions

Deliberate Deceptions

The Deputy Secretary of U.S.State Department, Mr. Robert Zoellick, has been more outspoken lately about the state of political affairs in Egypt. During the recent economic forum, Davos, which was held in Sharm Al Sheikh resort in Egypt, Mr. Zoellick made some remarks on several controversial political issues, among them was the Muslim Brotherhood. Some of the remarks he made were an outcome of deliberate political deception campaign by the Egyptian government to justify its oppressive measures against opposition. Therefore, we believe it is important to address some of the points he raised so the western public opinion gets the facts straight. Please also refer to the article “Our Testimony” posted on Ikhwanweb.

1-The emergency laws

The facts speak for themselves. The emergency law in Egypt has failed to prevent terrorism or violence. The reality is that the emergency laws are exclusively applied against political opposition for the sole purpose of protecting the regime and at any price. We certainly do not need an emergency law to prosecute terrorists or drug dealers. The civil laws have enough safeguards to ensure the swift and severe punishment of anyone who might try to tamper with the country’s peace and security. It is absolutely naïve to believe the notion that the emergency laws are not being used to intimidate and silence the opposition. The emergency laws are major obstacle for development and progress in Egypt and without their abolishment; it will be unrealistic to expect any genuine reform

2-The Muslim Brotherhood does not seek to overthrow governments

The Muslim Brotherhood does not seek power as an ultimate goal, but rather a means to achieve justice and prosperity. It does not matter who governs us, as long as the government is chosen by the free will of the people and truly reflects their values, beliefs and dreams. The Muslim Brotherhood is neither seeking to destabilize any governments across the Arab and Muslim World, nor is presenting itself as an alternative to any regime. On the contrary, the Muslim Brothers have been always the elements of safety and stability in their countries and have always stepped forward whenever the security of their countries was threatened whether by foreign or domestic forces. The threat that those regimes feel coming from the Muslim Brotherhood is a product of their own imagination which makes them see any true representation of the nation’s will, a threat to their survival in power.

3-No monopoly over opposition

The Muslim Brotherhood does not claim to be the sole defender of reform and freedom in Egypt. There are others in the political arena, regardless of their political affiliation or personal believes, whose sacrifices have contributed to the wellbeing of Egypt and can never be ignored. The Egyptian people today are politically represented by an opposition that is stronger than ever, and the Muslim Brotherhood is just one major element in this opposition. We believe that the political scene is too diverse to one group or party to be able to govern on its own without participation by other political powers in order to form a national government capable of fulfilling the people’s aspirations.

4-MB”s genuine commitment to democracy and political pluralism

The Muslim Brotherhood has always reaffirmed its commitment to democracy and rule of law in plain words coupled by actions. We believe in political pluralism and rotation of power as dictated by the free will of the people. These are not shallow promises but strong convictions, which have been tested on the ground in various cases.

5-Egyptian people’s innate affinity with religion

The Egyptian people affinity with religion whether Christianity or Islam, is deep rooted in history and is not a result of frustration, despair or poverty. Their choice of moderate religious values and principals is a natural outcome of their love and respect of religion, and not just a mere opposition to other disposed ideologies. There is no contradiction between Islam as a reference for governing and democratic principals as viewed by western societies. In fact, the Muslim Brotherhood political agenda does not significantly differ from any national party in any meaningful way.

6-Foreign aid

The Muslim Brotherhood rejects foreign aids if used as a vehicle to impose one culture’s values and beliefs on other’s. Rich and poor nations must cooperate amongst each other within the context of noble humane traditions not under the pretext of foreign hegemony. The views expressed by some foreign government’s officials in dealing with the issue of foreign aid to Egypt and the arrogant demands they try push forward, can only reinforce resentment and hate. The world will be a better place if governments emphasize on cooperation not domination and promote the respect for cultures and beliefs.

Professor Mohamed Habib is the First Deputy Chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood

Related topics:

1-One Step Forward,Two Steps Back     

2-Our Testimony

3-Islam and Democracy

4-U.S. denies envoy”s “interfering” remarks on Egypt aid

5-Statement by the U.S. Embassy in Cairo