by Paul & Phillip D. Collins, Jan. 11, 2008
Muslim Brotherhood Diagrams these authors write these words, Israel is conducting a major ground assault in the Gaza Strip. Israeli ground troops and heavy armor have moved deep into the Gaza Strip (“Israeli forces split Gaza in two”). According to the BBC, the move has, in effect, cut the territory in two (ibid). This ground assault followed hot on the heels of Operation Cast Lead, a December 27-28 series of Israeli airstrikes conducted in Gaza in response to Hamas’ refusal to renew the truce brokered by Egypt in the summer of 2008 (Khalil, “The already-strained Hamas-Egypt relationship sours”). Hamas had been launching rocket attacks into Israel since December 24, when no less than 70 rockets hit the small Jewish state, and Israel decided to strike back (“Israeli jets hit Hamas target, killing 1”).
Doubtless, the conflict between Israel and Hamas is one of the many issues that Obama will have to address when he enters the Oval Office. Is the President-elect sincere in his opposition to the terrorists responsible for the current Middle East crisis? Obama has repeatedly condemned Hamas, calling the group a terrorist organization (Oinounou, “A Hamas problem for Obama?”) The President-elect even went as far as to condemn former President Jimmy Carter for meeting with Hamas (ibid). But the words of Ahmed Yousef, a top Hamas political advisor, during a WABC interview, seem to suggest that Obama’s opposition to Hamas may be a mere public relations ploy. During the interview, Yousef stated:
“We don’t mind-actually we like Mr. Obama. We hope he will (win) the election and I do believe he is like John Kennedy, great man with great principle, and he has a vision to change America to make it in a position to lead the world community but not with domination and arrogance.” (Ibid)
Why would Hamas support an Obama presidency? The answer may lie in a group known as the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Muslim Brotherhood
According to former CIA operative Robert Baer, Hamas was an offshoot of the Egyptian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood (172). Founded in 1928 by an Egyptian schoolteacher named Hassan al-Banna with the expressed purpose of purifying Islam, the Muslim Brotherhood is anything but a benign Muslim organization (172). According to Baer, the Brotherhood “is another of the cauldrons from which al Qaeda emerged” (172). Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the architect of the September 11 attacks, joined the Muslim Brotherhood at the age of sixteen and attended the Brotherhood’s desert youth camps (Mintz and Farah, “In Search of Friends Among Foes”). Ayman Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden’s deputy, was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Egyptian branch (ibid). According to Seymour Hersh, the Brotherhood may have even been involved in the September 11 attacks. Hersh states: “Many of the September 11th hijackers had operated out of cells in Aachen and Hamburg, where Al Qaeda was working with the Brotherhood” (“The Syrian Bet”). The Brotherhood’s hatred of the United States was clearly expressed in a 1991 internal memorandum written by Mohamed Akram for the Shura Council of the Muslim Brotherhood. Entitled “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America,” the document states that the Brotherhood’s activities in the United States represent:
“a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” (Akram)