U.S. media is reporting that deputy head of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood has said that West has an “obligation” to support Egypt with financial and diplomatic support. According to a Washintong Post report:
CAIRO — Egypt is on the brink of political and economic collapse and the West has an obligation to sustain the country with financial aid and diplomatic support, a senior Muslim Brotherhood official has warned. Khairat El-Shater, deputy supreme guide of the Islamist movement that controls half the Egyptian parliament, said this week that the United States and Europe are neglecting Egypt at their peril a year after a popular uprising deposed a key U.S. ally in former president Hosni Mubarak.. “The democratic transition in Egypt is hanging in the balance,” Shater said this week at the Brotherhood’s headquarters in a Cairo suburb. “We strongly advise the Americans and the Europeans to support Egypt during this critical period as compensation for the many years they supported a brutal dictatorship.” Shater’s appeal was extraordinary, coming as it did from a group the United States had long kept at arm’s length out of respect for Mubarak, who persecuted the Brotherhood as a threat to his secular rule. It was only two months ago that high-level U.S. officials engaged in rare formal meetings with senior Brotherhood members, many of whom regard Washington warily for its unstinting support of Mubarak. Since Mubarak’s ouster, the Egyptian economy has suffered from capital flight, rising inflation, a yawning balance-of-payments deficit and a failed bid to stabilize the local currency that halved its foreign reserves. An economic meltdown, Shater warned, would “transform a peaceful revolution into a hunger revolution” with traumatic consequences for U.S. interests in the region. Tensions in Egypt boiled over this week in response to the deaths of more than seventy people at a soccer riot in Port Said, an incident rumored to have had political motivations. The United States has been cautious in its approach to Egypt since Mubarak’s fall, supporting its transition to civilian rule while insisting that its freely elected parliament uphold the country’s international accords, particularly its peace treaty with Israel. Washington has been sharply critical of the government’s move last month to prohibit several American NGO workers, including the son of U.S. transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, from leaving the country. But Shater admonished the U.S. government for its long support of Mubarak at the expense of the Egyptian people. The 61-year-old Shater made his remarks as relations between Washington and Cairo have decayed amid reports the White House is pressuring Egypt’s military-run interim government to hasten a transition to civilian rule. He warned against a reduction in U.S. aid to Egypt, a reference to recent reports that the Obama administration has threatened to cut Washington’s annual $1.3 billion package of military assistance, a legacy of Egypt’s three-decade old peace treaty with Israel.
Read the rest here.
It should be noted that the Muslim Brotherhood today has become a global network and that the Egyptian mother branch is not necessarily the most important part of the movement. Sheikh Youssef Qaradawi, close to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, is often referred to by the GMBDW 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.
A previous post discussed a report that the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood is supporting the Egyptian military’s investigation into two American NGO’s operating in Egypt
MEMRI has posted an article titled “Antisemitic and Anti-Israel Articles on Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Website” which discusses articles posted on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood website with anti-Semitic motifs, both before and during the revolution.