The Wall Street Journal has reported on recent moves by the U.S. Government to reach closer relations with the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood. According to the article:
The U.S. has traditionally avoided contact with the Brotherhood across the Middle East. But now the State Department and National Security Council have begun to hold regular strategy sessions on Syria policy with the NSF and is funding an organization linked to it. Senior officials from the State Department and the National Security Council confirm the meetings. The U.S. has also discussed with the NSF and linked groups ways to monitor elections and promote civil society in Syria.
The article goes on to discuss similar moves toward what might be called the “Egyptian” Muslim Brotherhood commenting on a recent State Department Intelligence hearing on the subject. Practically speaking, however, individuals and organizations associated with what is referred to here as the “Global Muslim Brotherhood” rarely if ever seem to interact with their Syrian counterparts nor does it appear that the Syrian wing has built a global organization with anywhere close to the global impact of the Saudi-financed network led by Qatari Sheikh Youssef Qaradawi. Yet the Journal article discusses the two “wings” of the movement as if they were the same entity. A prudent policy would be to treat the two entities as separate for purposes of public policy.