Stop fearing the Muslim Brotherhood

  • Article by: AHMED THARWAT
  • Updated: December 17, 2011 - 4:01 PM

If it's an obsession you seek, there's plenty of fodder right here in America.

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The crescent moon is a symbol of Islam.

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Since the outbreak of the Arab Spring a year ago, the most transforming event in the Arab world's history, people all over the Western world -- the media, politicians, friends and enemies alike -- have been asking: What about the Muslim Brotherhood threat?

 What about the emergence of the Islamists?

I can't have a normal conversation about anything, even sports, without someone asking me: What about the Muslim Brotherhood?

How are they going to treat women and the peace treaty with Israel? They equate the human rights of Egyptian women with a political treaty that can be negotiated.

Everywhere I go, people ask me about the Muslim Brotherhood, as if they just came back out of Western medieval memories. Are they going to force Egyptian women to wear hijab? (Incidentally, most of them already do.)

What about applying sharia law in Egypt? Nobody asks me about sharia in Saudi Arabia.

Last week, a local TV producer asked me, "Isn't the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization?"

A TV host asked me about what I think of the Israeli finance minister's warning to the West that everyone, man or woman, in the West should be worried about the Brotherhood's winning the Egyptian election.

What about the orthodox Jewish brotherhood, who have been terrorizing the Palestinians for years, grabbing land, denying the inspiration of a whole nation?

(That would be the Palestine nation, which, according to the former House speaker and a presidential front runner, Newt Gingrich, is an "invented" people -- and "terrorists.")

The scary part is, he's the smart one in the GOP field.

Even a staunch supporter of Israel like Joe Lieberman didn't agree with this twisted historical perspective from the history professor.

And it brought this response from Bradley Burston at Haaretz, a leading Israeli newspaper: "Mr. Speaker, if, for the sake of Jesus and the Resurrection, you want the territories to remain occupied forever, you and your Christian Zionist allies will have to do some homework before Inauguration Day."

When Obama was in Newt's position three years ago, and salivating for American Jewish votes, he made an historical blunder about Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Jewish votes seem to wipe out historical facts from the minds of American politicians.

"Don't ask me about the Muslim Brotherhood ... before you talk to me about the Christian Brotherhood, the evangelical Christian right, who want to bring Jesus to Washington," Markos Moulitsas of the Daily Kos has said.

Don't ask me about Muslim Brotherhood or the Salafi no more. Ask me about the Tea Party and their Salafi way of thinking, which is embraced by the Republican Party establishment.

Don't ask me about the Muslim Brotherhood sweeping the Arab world no more.

Ask me about Islamophobia sweeping our nation in the post-9/11 era -- where Muslims are not even accepted as consumers, with another low from the Lowe's home-improvement chain, pandering to some Christian evangelical paranoia and canceling its ad campaign from a TV show that dared to show Muslims as mainstream Americans.

Don't ask me about the Muslim Brotherhood no more. Ask me about the Koch brothers-hood bankrolling the Salafi evangelical racist movement in this country.

Don't ask me about the Muslim Brotherhood no more, because no matter how wacky they look, or seem, no matter what they do and say, they are still my brothers.

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Ahmed Tharwat is a public speaker and hosts the Arab-American show "Belahdan" at 10:30 p.m. Saturdays on Twin Cities Public Television. He blogs at www.ahmediatv.com.

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