For Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing, if his ministers also he transformed as the ministers of righteousness . . .
—2 Corinthians 11:14-15
Remember when Obama went to Cairo to deplore the “tension between the United States and Muslims around the world”? That tension, he said, was “exploited” by “violent extremists” in a “small but potent minority of Muslims.” As a result, some Americans had come to view Islam as “inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights.” And this, he said, “has bred more fear and mistrust.”
Obama went to Cairo to offer “a new beginning,” dispel the fear, cure the mistrust, and end the “cycle of suspicion and discord.” America and Islam, he said, “are not exclusive, and need not be in competition.”
Good news: they “overlap, and share common principles.” More good news: those principles have to do with “justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.” Who knew?
Some proverbial wisdom: be careful about what you wish for — you just might get it.
Keen on democracy, are you? Do you view the pickle that Egyptian bad guy Hosni Mubarak finds himself in with glee? Are those rock-throwing multitudes in Egypt the “voice of democracy”?
Maybe. But who or what is the demos, the people?
The largest opposition group in Egypt — as in many Arab countries — is the Muslim Brotherhood. Officially, the group, which was founded in Egypt in 1928 by Hassan al-Banna (the grandfather of Muslim confidence man Tariq Ramadan), is banned in Egypt. No matter. It is nonetheless the “world’s most influential Islamist movement.” No one knows exactly how many members it has in Egypt. The number is certainly in the millions.
What is the goal of the Muslim Brotherhood? To make the Koran the “sole reference point for … ordering the life of the Muslim family, individual, community … and state.”
What is the means by which the Muslim Brotherhood seeks to achieve this goal? Jihad — a “grand jihad,” as one document puts it, which seeks to destroy 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.”
Particulars? In Egypt, since the Muslim Brotherhood is banned, supporters “run for office as independents.” It preaches “social justice,” “the eradication of poverty and corruption,” “political freedom” — important caveat — “to the extent allowed by the laws of Islam.”
What is happening in Egypt? Joe Biden, whose record for imbecility is unblemished, chalked up another victory a few days ago when he assured us that Hosni Mubarak was “not a dictator.” He looks like a dictator. He certainly acts like a dictator. Nevertheless, Biden, in what Fox News called “the Obama administration’s most definitive statement to date” (January 28), said that Mubarak should not step down.
He might be right.
The “unrest” (a polite word for “riots”) we are seeing in Egypt is certainly “popular” unrest. We are supposed to be in favor of unrest when it is “popular,” aren’t we?
Again, I would suggest that we take a look at the nature and composition of the populace before offering a definitive opinion about that. Ponder this headline from The New York Times: “Iran Sees Rise of Islamic Hard-Liners.”
An unhappy truth: in this imperfect world, we are often faced with a choice between something bad and something worse.
If you want to understand what is happening in Egypt, read Andy McCarthy’s book The Grand Jihad. Its chief purpose is to illuminate what is happening in the United States. But it has a lot of historical background about the origin and evolution of the Muslim Brotherhood. McCarthy is not as cheery as President Obama. He is, however, a good sight more truthful.