Canadian media is reporting on comments made by Tariq Ramadan in which he attempted to reassure the West about the potential for the Muslim Brotherhood coming to power in Egypt and Tunisia. According to a report in the Ottawa Citizen, Ramadan made the following comments during a lecture titled “The Arab Spring and the West” and sponsored by Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East:
Ramadan also said he believes that western concerns about the Muslim Brotherhood waiting in the wings to impose Islamist regimes in Egypt and Tunisia are overblown. This fear was promoted by the dictators to stay in power. Certainly, members of the Brotherhood were active in the uprisings, but they were not controlling them, he said. Indeed, according to Ramadan, the Muslim Brotherhood is divided. The older leadership doesn’t necessarily represent the aspirations of many of its younger members, some of whom have formed their own political parties. Nor do the Muslim Brotherhood, or Islamists in general, represent the majority in, say, Egypt or Tunisia.
The website of the Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East reveals that the organization is part of the far-left/Global Muslim Brotherhood network attempting to delegitimize the State of Israel
Tariq Ramadan is perhaps best described as an independent power center within the global Brotherhood with sufficient stature as the son of Said Ramadan, and the grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood to challenge positions taken by important Brotherhood leaders. His statements and writings have been extensively analyzed and he has been accused by critics of promoting anti-Semitism and fundamentalism, albeit by subtle means. On the other hand, his supporters promote him as as example of an Islamic reformer who is in the forefront of developing a “Euro Islam.” Ramadan is currently professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Oxford’s Faculty of Theology and senior research fellow at St. Antony’s College (Oxford), Dohisha University (Kyoto, Japan) and at the Lokahi Foundation (London). Previous posts discussed his dismissal from his positions as an adviser on integration for the city of Rotterdam and from a Dutch University over his role as a talk show host on Iranian TV. A ban on Ramadan traveling to the US was lifted in January 2010 and several posts have discussed his recent visits to the US where he appeared at various US Muslim Brotherhood venues including giving the keynote at the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR)-Chicago annual banquet in April 2010. He was scheduled to give the keynote address at the 16th annual CAIR banquet in October.