a short course, part 9

The Genesis of the Muslim Brotherhood

 

The aftermath of World War I, with the defeat of the Turkish Ottoman Empire, saw the destruction of the Islamic political authority called the “caliphate.” Mustapha Kemal Ataturk established post-Ottoman Turkey as a secular westernized state and abolished the caliphate. Among his reforms to dismantle the shariah system, Ataturk banned the tradition of growing beards by men and wearing headscarves by women, banned the call to prayer from the mosques, abolished the Turkish language’s script and replaced it with the Latin alphabet, and made the Turkish military the custodians of a new secular tradition.

This did not sit well with Islamic traditionalists. Some became determined to restore the caliphate, if not in Turkey, then somewhere else. One such individual was Hassan al Banna, the son of a Muslim imam who lived outside Cairo, Egypt. In 1928, al Banna founded an organization called the al-Ikhwan al-Musilmin, known in English as the Society of Muslim Brothers or the Muslim Brotherhood (MB).

The purpose of the MB or Ikhwan was to unify the predominantly Islamic countries under a new caliphate and subordinating all lands to the rule of a single caliph, under shariah law.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s bylaws make clear the organization’s objectives and how it intends to achieve them:

“The Muslim Brotherhood is an International Muslim body which seeks to establish Allah’s law in the land by achieving the spiritual goals of Islam and the true religion which are namely the following: . . . (F) the need to work on establishing the Islamic State; [and] (G) The sincere support for a global cooperation in accordance with the provisions of the Islamic Sharia.”

Chapter II, Article 3 of the MB’s bylaws states:

“The Muslim Brotherhood in achieving these objectives depends on the following means: . . . (D) Make every effort for the establishment of educational, social, economic, and scientific institutions and the establishment of mosques, schools, clinics, shelters, clubs, as well as the formation of committees to regulate zakat affairs and alms; (E) The Islamic nation must be fully prepared to fight the tyrants and the enemies of Allah as a prelude to establishing the Islamic state.”

By the early 1930s, the Brotherhood had developed a formal organizational structure around groups of men with special spiritual and physical training called “Battalions.” By 1940, the MB created the “secret apparatus” which was the Ikhwan’s military wing, abandoning the Battalions in 1943. The Ikhwan developed a relationship with the Nazis during the war. The MB’s military wing continues to operate today and is called the “Special Chapter.” The Special Chapter’s operations are known as “special work,” meaning military fighting or covert operations.

During World War II and the years that followed, the MB became increasingly aggressive and violent. It called for the removal of all British forces (“non-Muslim Forces”) from Egypt (“Muslim Lands”) as required by shariah or Islamic law.

During the late 1940s, the MB targeted Egyptian officials (including Muslims), British soldiers and their families, and in December 1948, a Muslim Brother assassinated Egyptian Prime Minister Mahmud Fahmi al-Nuqrashi. In February 1949, Egyptian security forces killed MB founder Hassan al Banna in Cairo.

The period following the assassination of al Banna was marked with significant MB violence against the Egyptian monarchy and the British. After a ban on MB activities was lifted in 1951, the Ikhwan coordinated actively with Gamal Abdel Nasser and the young officers who overthrew King Farouk in 1952. As soon as the Ikhwan felt powerful enough to confront the government on its own, however, it turned against the new President Nasser.

Nasser, in turn, launched a crackdown against the MB in 1954 that accelerated an exodus of many top Brothers and the expansion of the organization around the world, including into the West.

The Team B report lists prominent Ikhwan members during this transitional period who played vital roles in transforming the MB into the international Muslim mafia it is today. One of those figures was Said Ramadan, who was al Banna’s assistant for years and married his daughter. The history of their penetration of Western societies in Europe is instructive for those seeking to understand how and the extent to which similar influence operations are being run against the United States.

Said Ramadan’s son and al Banna’s grandson Tariq Ramadan is a member of the MB leadership and one of the most skillful practitioners of the stealth jihad. In January 2010, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton reversed a six-year ban on his entry into the United States. Tariq Ramadan has used his renewed access to American audiences to advance the Brotherhood’s civilization jihad.

This serialization of the Team B report will continue, with Part 10 discussing the movement of the Muslim Brotherhood into the West.