A Qatari newspaper has reported that Youssef Qaradawi has denied that the Muslim Brotherhood is “following the way” of Sayyid Qutb, one of the most important ideologues in the history of the Muslim Brotherhood. According to the report:
Dr Yusuf al-Qaradawi, chairman of the International Federation for Muslim Scholars, has denied that the Muslim Brotherhood [MB] is following the way of the martyr Sayyid Qutb, and said that whoever believes that the way of Sayyid Qutb is the way of the MB group then they are wrong, because the MB has deserted the ideas of Qutb, and now follows the way of Hassan al-Banna. He stressed his disagreement with the concepts and ideas of Sayyid Qutb, pointing out to the difference of those ideas with what Ahl al-Sunnah and Jama’ah [Sunnis] agreed upon, and what the MB group has based its call upon, adding that the way and thought of Sayyid Qutb are things that MB is not responsible for, especially that he did not receive his ideas in the MB school [of thought]. His Eminence said in a interview on Al-Fara’in channel with Dr Dhiya Rashwan the researcher on Islamic movements in his show “Forums and Guns”: “I do not think that Qutb belongs to the school or thought of Hasan al-Banna, the first supreme leader and founder of the MB, but he was only impressed with his personality, which enabled him to establish a large and widespread organization, but he was not cited like Abu-al-Ala al-Mawdudi and Abu-al-Hasan al-Nadawi. His Eminence revealed that those of the MB group who were close to Qutb know this about him very well, citing a story that was told to him by Dr Muhammad Abdallah al-Mahdi, who was a detainee in 1965 and assured him that Qutb had told his colleagues that the books he wrote before entering prison, such as the first edition of “Milestones on the road ” and “The battle of Islam and capitalism” were not his doctrine, and that what he called for and believed in at the time were his last books like the last parts of the book “In the shadows of the Qur’an”, and that he was like Al-Shafi’i [One of the Imams of the four Sunni denominations] who “had two ways, an old and a modern one, but he was different from Al-Shafi’i, as he changed the fundamentals while Al-Shafi’i changed the branches.” His Eminence said that Sayyid Qutb bears some responsibility for the emergence of the Takfiri ideology, pointing out that the last ideological phase for him, which was the phase of confrontation and rejection and in which he deemed the society infidel, represented his departure from the Ahl al-Sunnah and Jama’a, since they the dominant pattern among them is to be limited in the issuance of the takfir fatwas.
A previous post discussed a decision by the government of Saudi Arabia to band the works of Qutb from school libraries in that country as well as the importance of Qutb in the history of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Youssef Qaradawi is often referred to here as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide stating only that
..he had consciously decided not to limit his scope of manoeuvre by tying himself ‘any movement which might constrain my actions, even if this is the Muslim Brotherhood under whose umbrella I grew and which I so defended…Would I, at the age of 77, accept what I turned down when I was 49?’
Based in Qatar, Sheikh Qaradawi has reportedly amassed substantial wealth through his role as Shari’ah adviser to many important Islamic banks and funds. He is also considered to be the “spiritual guide” for Hamas and his fatwas in support of suicide bombings against Israeli citizens were instrumental in the development of the phenomenon.
(Source: Al-Sharq website, Doha, in Arabic 9 Aug 09 BBC Monitoring Middle East – Political August 11, 2009 Tuesday “Qatar-based cleric Al-Qaradawi comments on Muslim Brotherhood’s ideology” Text of report by Qatar newspaper Al-Sharq website on 9 August [Unattributed report: Al-Qaradawi: ‘Sayyid Qutb Bears Some Responsibility for the Emergence of Takfiris; Sayyid Qutb Writings out of Ahl al-Sunnah Consensus.]