How scary is the Muslim Brotherhood?

It looks like the Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsy (or Morsi or Moursy, there are variant transliteratons) was one of the top two finishers in the Egyptian presidential election May 23-24, and now will advance to the runoff in June, and might be Egypt’s first freely-elected president post-Mubarak or ever. His remaining opponent will be Mubarak’s last PM, Ahmed Shafik.

(Probably. There are already street protests, arson of Shafik’s Cairo campaign HQ, and demands to nullify the vote for irregularities. A lot of Egyptians apparently don’t like having to choose between an old-regime figure and an MB candidate. Hamdeen Sabahi, a lefty-secularist and a longtime opponent of the Mubarak regime, ran third, by official count. Well, be all that as it may . . .)

Now, my initial reaction is, don’t panic. Let’s keep this in perspective. The MB is not going to stone adulterers or make women quit their jobs and wear burqas. That would be Al-Nour.

As for MB (or, in Egyptian elections, the Freedom and Justice Party):

From what I can see, it’s very-more-or-less the Islamic equivalent of Christian democracy. No CD party in Europe wants to reinstate the Inquisition or revive the Crusades. (And no sensible Egyptian wants to get so nasty with Israel that U.S. aid dries up – I understand we give roughly equal amounts to both countries.) And we have more than a few Republicans in the U.S. (not the majority of them, I think, not any more) whose gorge would rise at the thought of a female POTUS or a non-Christian POTUS. What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the shwarma.

Anyone here think the prospect of a Morsi/MB Administration in Egypt is really something to worry about? A threat to Israel? A threat to Egyptian seculars/women/non-Muslims?

Election thread in the Elections forum.

The runoff (if it happens as scheduled) will be June 16.

Morsy reassures women and Coptic Christians he will respect their rights, FWIW.

Yeah, I’d say I’m exactly where you are. Not that Egypt (historically, geographically) is in the same place as Continental Europe, but the Christian Democrat analogy is a fair one, I expect. Ultimately, the problem with democracy is that you actually have to let people make the choices, even if you don’t think that choices are the right ones.


Do members of the Christian Democrats in Germany call for the killing of German Christians who convert to Islam?

Do they argue that the government should mandate all Germans have their religion stamped on their IDs and that in the case of former Christians it should say “ex-Christian” rather than their actual religion?

Also do Christian Democrata in Germany claim Jews are the descendants of apes and pigs?

The word “Copt” is just another word for “Egyptian,” BTW, but nowadays it is used to mean specifically Coptic Christians. WRT Christology, the Copts are (mostly) monophysites, which makes them heretics to all Catholics, Orthodoxers and Protestants, but there seems to be some foreign coreligionist sympathy for them anyway, at least when Muslims come down on them.

Sorry, but you’re living in a fantasy, not the real world.

If you want to use a Christian Democrat analogy–don’t look to Europe. Look to America. The good ol’ USA has its own “Christian Democrats”. Nice, harmless people, right?

Half of the people here at the Dope panic when they think about the consequences of the Tea Party or Pat Robinson, etc. running the country. Forced prayer in schools, banning the teaching of Darwin, no abortions for any reason, no gay rights,etc…
Think about how that would affect your own personal life… It’s pretty scary stuff, right?
But at least you can relax a bit–because the Tea Party would still be limited by the U.S. Constitution, by separation of church and state, etc.

Now imagine Egypt being run, not by a Tea Party , but by the Muslim Brotherhood Party—which is not limited by any constitution or First Ammendment-style documents. Instead they want to write a new constitution for Egyptian society, which will be officially based on Shariah law.

For pragmatic reasons, they won’t be able to enforce Saudi-Arabia style religious policing, or Taliban-style treatment of women. Not immediately. They are good enough politicians to realize that they will have to do it gradually, over 10 or 15 years.
In the meantime they’ll just start by declaring war on Israel.

I’ll bet Egypt and Israel do not go to war within 10 years, absent an intervening violent revolution in Egypt, or a preemptive Israeli attack. I’m willing to wager $20. You in?


Egypt’s emergency law expires, FWIW. And nobody seems to want to renew it.

Fourth straight night of protests in Tahrir Square, demanding Shafiq and Morsy bow out of the race.

This could work out very well.

The Muslim Brotherhood is a very influential organization throughout the muslim world, based from Egypt.

If the MB give the people what they want, which appears to be to remain broadly secular, that sets quite an example for MB groups outside of Egypt and other Islamic groups. Much more so than a non-religious party installing secular government.

There’s nothing wrong with being descended from apes.

It’s much better to be descended from a common ancestor several million years back, to be honest. You get fire and potentially iPods and stuff if you go that route…


Nothing will ever be as scary as George Bush.

Considering all the shit going on in other places like Syria, lets wait until they actually start killing apostates; requiring religion to be identified on ID (doesn’t Israel do something like this (maybe it was with license plates, Allessan probably knows)?); I thought we were all apes.

I don’t know how boilogical classification works but humans are the only species of our genus. In other words we have created a special genus to which only we and our ancestors belong. It seems a bit humanocentric to me.

<hijack> The classification is based on biology, not for any “humanocentric” reason. There are plenty of examples of animals who are the only one in their genus. In fact, there are many (like the walrus for example) who are the only members in their family (Odobenidae if you want to look it up)


We’re discussing Egypt so I don’t see what the point of that statement is.

Are you trying to make some reference to Hafez and Rifaat’s handling of Hama?

Er,… Egypt already does. You really ought to do research on this part of the world you seem to have such strong opinions about.

While the Egyptian government does not yet officially execute them, they’re heavily discriminated against and, under pressure from the Muslim Brotherhood the Mubarak government did regularly have them arrested for “blasphemy”, “immorality”, or “insulting Islam” and tortured.

Again, I’m surprised you were unaware of this.

This statement makes utterly no sense in regards to what we’re discussing.

The claims of Jews being the descendants of apes and pigs isn’t based on science or understanding of Darwinian evolution(which the Muslim Brotherhood doesn’t believe in) but because of an anti-Semitic hadith which declares Jews to be the descendants of apes and pigs.

Well, not anymore.

Meh, I still think you’re hyperventilating prematurely. BTW, doesn’t Israel also require religious identification on IDs. Why is it so bad for Egypt but peachy keen for Israel?

If Israel did make such a requirement you’d have a point, but they don’t so you don’t.

Once more, I’m amazed that someone who cares so much about the Israel-Palestinian conflict knows so little about it.

So anyway, what are your thoughts on Egypt, Syria, and Iran requiring religious identification on all IDs.

I’m a bit confused, because earlier you said “let’s wait till they actually require requiring religious identification on their IDs” and now, after being informed they do, you’re like “so what”.

That attitude strikes me as hypocritical, ignorant, and intellectually inconsistent.