Egypt Muslim Brotherhood Reiterates Commitment to Non-Violence
From the first days of its inception, the Muslim Brotherhood set its stance against violence and terrorism as one of its essential constants. Evidently, the group passed through several stages, and interacted with the homeland’s and the nation’s important issues.
Throughout its history, the Brotherhood was the victim of many episodes of extreme oppression, persecution and even execution of its leaders by successive governments. Any of those notorious episodes of government repression could have given the group justification for a change in approach. However, the group refused, committing instead to the path of peaceful civil and political struggle, to democratic mechanisms and popular choices.
The group has raised several generations to this great judicious approach, because – in addition to being one of the important constants of its ideology – peacefulness is a fundamental principle and tenet of its faith, Islam.
Now, in the latest phase of conflicts, created by the coup regime in Egypt after the junta executed its brutal military coup on July 3 (2013), the junta removed the legitimate regime freely elected in fair and transparent elections, disbanded the parliament whose members also had been elected in free and fair elections. The junta further abolished the country’s Constitution which had been prepared by an elected committee and approved by the Egyptian people, by an almost two-thirds majority in a popular referendum in which all political forces and currents participated without exception.
All of these illegitimate junta actions were rejected by the Muslim Brotherhood and the people of Egypt, all the while committing to its slogan "Our peacefulness is stronger than bullets". The group has remained, and still remains, committed – in word and deed – to peaceful and political civil resistance, in spite of all the horrid massacres by the coup regime, including Rabaa and Nahda bloodbaths.
Meanwhile, the coup regime’s media machine maintained a relentless anti-Brotherhood campaign of demonization and dehumanization, supported by military and security tactics aimed at pushing the Egyptian people, including the Muslim Brotherhood, into a spiral of chaos and violence.
After the tragic farce where a kangaroo court in Minya (south of Cairo) sentenced to death 529 anti-coup citizens, including a number of Muslim Brotherhood members, the group reacted with an official statement reiterating its commitment to non-violence, saying: "The purpose of murderous coup authorities – with these absurd court sentences – is to provoke the Egyptian Revolution to abandon its peacefulness. But this will not be. Our Revolution will remain peaceful. This injustice, oppression and persecution will only strengthen our resolve, our resilience and determination to defeat the bloody military coup and restore our freedom, our dignity and our sovereignty".
The illegitimate coup regime’s basic strategy was clear from the start, after the notorious words of army commander General Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi on July 16, 2013 to his supporters: "Give me a mandate to confront potential terrorism!"
Following the coup regime’s failure to stop or abort the Revolution of the Egyptian people, who rejected all the junta’s actions and processes in huge protests that remained peaceful despite the extreme brutality of the coup security forces as they arrested and killed non-violent participants, the junta started a new episode in which a series of mysterious bombings and acts of terrorism was executed, regularly accompanied by almost live media coverage (by the junta’s media henchmen) which always tried to quickly pin charges of terrorism and violence onto the Muslim Brotherhood, without any evidence or proof from investigating authorities.
Ultimately, this escalating ruthless campaign of deliberate misinformation and demonization ended up with an illegal announcement by the junta regime, rather than the judiciary, that the Muslim Brotherhood was suddenly a "terrorist" organization.
The Brotherhood should not have to – every day – reiterate its constants, its strategic stance and chosen path of civil peaceful struggle to restore legitimacy, the Revolution and democratic transformation, to achieve its objectives of change in order to safeguard institutions, establish civil peace through real justice and empower the Revolution and popular will.
Finally, one of the basic rules underlying the Brotherhood’s work and activities, and which governs its path since inception until today, is that there are specific constants, clear concepts and principles upon which the group has based its ideology and actions. Those who move away from such constants have effectively charted for themselves a different route away from the Muslim Brotherhood’s prescribed path.
Those who belong to the Muslim Brotherhood must adopt its peaceful approach and path of non-violent action; but if they call for a different line of action or chart for themselves an approach different from the group’s announced approach, they no longer belong in the Brotherhood, and the group no longer accepts them, no matter what they do or say.