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memri
January 13, 2012 No.
785

Antisemitic and Anti-Israel Articles on Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Website

By: B. Chernitsky*

Introduction

The website of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) in Egypt, Ikhwanonline.com, contains articles with antisemitic motifs, including Holocaust denial and descriptions of the "Jewish character" as covetous, exploitative, and a source of evil in human society. While articles of this tenor have been posted on the site in the past, their posting has recently taken on greater importance in light of the group's increasing strength following the ouster of the Mubarak regime, as reflected by the results of the recent parliamentary elections.

In addition to antisemitic content, articles on the site also include praise for jihad and martyrdom, and condemnation of negotiation as a means of regaining Islamic lands. Among these are articles calling to kill Zionists and praising the September 9, 2011 attack on the Israeli Embassy in Cairo – which one article called a landmark of the Egyptian revolution. Some senior officials in the MB's Freedom and Justice party published articles on the site expressing reservations regarding the peace agreement with Israel and insisting that Egypt was entitled to amend it.[1] Such statements contradict assurances by Freedom and Justice party head Dr. Muhammad Mursi to senior U.S. officials that the MB would honor all international agreements signed by Egypt.[2]

This paper will present excerpts of articles posted on the MB site, dated both before and after the revolution.

MB: The Jewish Character Is Still a Source of Evil in the World

In a June 2011 sermon posted on the website, MB in Egypt General Guide Muhammad Badi' discussed the Jews, their traits, and their actions: "Allah warned us against the deceit of the Jews and their dangerous role in sparking wars: 'Whenever they kindle a fire for war Allah puts it out, and they strive to make mischief in the land; and Allah does not love the mischief-makers [Koran 5:64].' Their hands light the hidden fuse... [and] little time passes before the fire spreads to the field of war, including Islamic lands... The war in Sudan and its division are their handiwork; the internal struggle and war among the Palestinians is [likewise part] of their plan. [For this reason,] the reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah angered them..."[3]

Following the May 2010 Gaza flotilla incident, a writer on the site named Mahmoud 'Abd Al-Rahman discussed "the Zionist Jewish character": "For ages, human society has faced the problem of the Zionist Jewish character. All nations and cultures are in agreement over the nature of the disease intrinsic in the Zionist character... namely sanctification of money, sex, robbery, interest, and treachery... We saw this in pharaonic Egypt, and in the Canaanite, Amalekite, Babylonian, Persian, and Roman [eras].

"The amazing thing is that all the nations dealt with the [Jewish] character in the same manner: by excising this tumor that has harmed all of humanity. We see this disease in the holy books – how the prophets suffered from [the Jews'] treatment. The Torah relates something that no sensible person can understand: in the Book of Jeremiah, Chapter Four, Verse 22, God expresses a desire to avenge His own people, because there is no other option: 'My people are fools; they do not know me. They are senseless children; they have no understanding. They are skilled in doing evil; they know not how to do good.'

"In the New Testament, Jesus calls them a 'brood of vipers' and 'sinners'... The [Jewish] character – both from within and from without – is exposed most clearly in the Koran. Allah has shown us is its secrets...

"We see [the Jewish character discussed] in the texts of the great writers, such as Shakespeare in his characterization of the Jewish merchant Shylock, in his work The Merchant of Venice. The author Charles Dickens provides the most detailed and accurate description of the Jewish soul, its materialism, prodigality, extreme removal from all values, and exploitation of workers and laborers.

"Analyzed psychologically, the Jew is a self-centered individual. He believes that God has not created his equal in the world, that he is the salt of the earth, and that God has given the [other] nations to him as slaves...

"Indeed, the way [the Jews] are regarded today has been passed through the history of the nations. During the pharaonic era, it was written on the tomb of [the pharaoh] Marnephtah, 'The Egyptians have annihilated the Zionists [sic].' An even clearer account is provided in the Tel Al-Amarna letters from the pharaonic era [and in what is related about how the Jews were treated under] Sargon II, king of Assyria, 730 BC; Nebuchadnezzar, [king of Babylon,] 597 BC; Pompey the Roman and Titus after him; the Prophet Muhammad, who exiled [the Jews] from the Arabian Peninsula; 'Omar Ibn Al-Khattab, who exiled them from Jerusalem, and in Medieval Europe. [The treatment of the Jews] was the result of the fact that they were the cause of the calamities [afflicting] the peoples [among which they lived]..."[4]

Against the backdrop of the discussion over Egypt's reconsideration of its peace agreement with Israel, and in the wake of the 2011 cross-border attacks near Eilat, Israel, in which seven Israelis and five Egyptian soldiers were killed, Dr. Muhammad 'Ali Dabour, member of the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) and lecturer at Cairo University, wrote about the Jewish nature: "Throughout all of history, the Jews have failed to keep their word. They always employ a double standard and act in their own interests, even if it means destroying the entire world... The Koran informs us: 'Certainly you will find the most violent of people in enmity for those who believe (to be) the Jews and those who are polytheists [Koran 5:82].' Allah, may He be exalted, [also] said: 'But on account of their breaking their covenant We cursed them and made their hearts hard; they altered the words from their places...' [Koran 5:13]. Breaking agreements and treaties is easier for [Jews] than drinking water or breathing air. Such are the Jews. Such is Jewish nature. Though they flatter, act hypocritically, and embitter the entire world, we Muslims must not be deceived by them..."

On the exile of the Jews from the Arabian Peninsula, Dabour wrote: "Our Prophet remained beholden to and upheld the agreement [he made with the Jews], but the Jews of the [Banu] Qaynuqa tribe were the first to break an agreement with the Messenger of Allah, as a result of which he exiled them from the city [of Medina]. The same was the case with the Jews of the Banu Nadhir tribe, whose character was that of traitors and scoundrels, considering that they broke their covenant with the Prophet and plotted to kill him... The same is true of the Jews of the Banu Qarayza tribe, who betrayed the Muslims, signing a covenant with the confederates in the Battle of the Trench and causing the Muslims distress.[5] The Prophet besieged [the Banu Qurayza] until they surrendered, and was saved from their wickedness and treachery."[6]

As early as October 2010, Dr. Isma'il 'Ali Muhammad, lecturer at Al-Azhar University, published a series of articles on "the nature of the Jews according to the Old Testament and the Talmud." In one article, he wrote: "It would not be an exaggeration to say that the [Jewish] character is still a source of evil and harm among all human societies... The main reason for the Jews' deviousness throughout history is the ideological and religious background they have handed down and on which they were raised, generation after generation, and which [ingrained] in their hearts the trait of [self-]sanctification and [self-]aggrandizement...

"When one reads the Old Testament, the Talmud, and the ideas born of them such as [those found in] The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the rulings of the rabbis, and the streams of Jewish ideology, one finds in them an open hostility toward all people. The Jews' deviant behavior is directed at all humanity... The holy ideological sources – according to their belief – permit them to act hypocritically and treacherously, and to unjustly throw to the dogs the lives, property, and belongings of non-Jews."[7]

In another article, he claimed that Jewish tradition taught the Jews to be "so criminal that they are unparalleled in all [other] human societies. It incites them to annihilate the non-Jews and to spread ruin and destruction throughout the non-Jewish world..."[8]

'Ali Muhammad concluded his series of articles with the following message: "The entire world must know the truth about the Jewish character, abominable values, and religious background, so that it can grasp its enmity toward humanity and take all necessary steps to protect itself against its wickedness. We Muslims should [recognize the Jewish character] better than anyone else. There is no doubt that our preparations for war with our enemy must include – if not begin with – recognizing its character..."[9]

Articles on MB Website Deny Holocaust, Accuse U.S. of Fabricating "Tale" of Jewish Extermination

Fathi Shihab, who is responsible for the MB's labor dossier, wrote that the Holocaust was a "tale" which Israel used as political leverage whenever it faced international criticism for its crimes and massacres. He said that "world Zionism" had succeeded in extracting a resolution from the U.N. that International Holocaust Remembrance Day would be marked every January 27, and said: "The entire world, and Germany in particular, have become yearly scapegoats of world Zionism, and have capitulated to the greatest political extortion in history."

He went on to describe the Holocaust as "a tale invented by the American intelligence apparatuses with the Allies' collaboration during World War II, in order to harm the image of their German adversaries and justify the great destructive war against the Axis countries' military and civilian installations – and especially to justify the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the persecution of the defeated countries' military chiefs in Nuremburg and Tokyo's courts.

"The victorious [Allies] operated according to the law of the jungle in trying their adversaries for crimes they themselves had invented. [The Allies] exploited the illegal immigration of millions of Jews from Europe to the U.S. during the war years by claiming they had disappeared in the Nazi prison camps. This was despite the fact that Germany's registry data show that the number of German Jews [prior to the war] was between 600,000 and 700,000, half a million of whom remained [alive] after [the war]. Add to this the fact that the number of Jews who died of 'natural causes, road accidents, and Allied attacks' amounted to several thousand. How [then] can it be claimed that the Nazis killed six million Jews, when there weren't more than 700,000 [to begin with]?...

"Western scientists and philosophers have unmasked the greatest lie in human history. The most famous of these are:

"1. Robert Faurisson – professor of literature at France's University of Lyon and one of the prominent figures in the stream that reexamined European history. He described the claims that Jews were killed with poison gas as an economic and political fraud...

"2. Henri Roques – received a PhD from France's University of Nantes; proved that the informer [Kurt] Gerstein, who reported to the Allies on the existence of gas chambers... in fact never saw any.[10]

"3. Roger Garaudy – in his book The Founding Myths of Modern Israel, he exposed the Israeli claims, exaggerations, and lies, including the tale of the Holocaust and other tales on which Israel has drawn [to justify] its existence...

"4. Norman Finkelstein – American author who in 2001 published his book The Holocaust Industry... According to him, the claim of the Jews' extermination was exploited by the U.S. to two ends: the first, to justify Israel's criminal policy against the Palestinians; and the second, to justify American support for this policy..."[11]


Fathi Shihab, in charge of the MB's labor portfolio[12]

Dr. Muhammad 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Marsi, a member of the MB's Office of the General Guide, wrote: "The Zionist movement exploited Hitler's rise to power and pressured the Jews of Germany to emigrate to Palestine. In 1933, it drafted a clandestine agreement with Hitler to exile the Jews, called the 'Haavara Agreement,' which led to the emigration of German Jews from important professions, greatly advancing the Zionist enterprise.[13]

"Notwithstanding the suffering of European Jewry under Hitler's policy against them during World War II (1939-1945), the Zionist enterprise in Palestine profited most more than anyone [from the war]. The Zionist organizations used it in order to justify [their] indoctrination to emigrate to Palestine, and in order to exacerbate the suffering of the [European] Jews, so as to turn it into a complex for the West, thereby forcing [the West] to support the [Zionist] enterprise."[14]

In Praise of Jihad and Martyrdom, Against Negotiations

In an article published following the release of prisoners as part of the Gilad Shalit deal, Dr. 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Bar, a member of the MB General Guide's Office and of the IUMS, stressed that jihad and martyrdom were the path to liberating all of Palestine – from "the sea to the river" – rather than negotiations, which had consistently failed to produce positive results. He emphasized that the attack on the Israeli embassy in Cairo was one of the milestones of the revolution in Egypt:

"'Oh brothers, Allah has granted the ummah, which excels at producing death and knows how to die honorably, dear life in this world and eternal bliss in the next. The weakness that leads to our humiliation is love for this world and hatred of death. Prepare your souls for a great deed. Work toward death; it is then that you will be granted life. Act toward honorable death, and you will earn complete happiness.'

"With these words, [MB founder] the shahid, the imam Hassan Al-Bana concluded his 'Letter on Jihad.' [These words] came to my mind when, in tears of joy, I watched the scenes of the prisoners being released from the prisons of the Zionist occupation, a nobility visible on their faces and in their eyes, and the words issuing from their mouths like rockets expressing [their] steadfastness... They proved that jihad alone is the means of liberating both man and homeland...

"Here they are, the sons of Al-Bana, [Hamas founders Ahmad] Yassin and ['Abd Al-'Aziz] Al-Rantisi, who, in a short period of time, realized by means of jihad what the ummah failed to achieve in many years of negotiations and capitulation. [Those in favor of negotiations] claimed, and the ummah listened to them, that jihad is terrorism which must be fought and an evil which must but struggled against...

"The Hamas lions, from the ['Izz Al-Din] Al-Qassam [Brigades] and [Islamic] Jihad in Palestine... demonstrated their readiness for martyrdom for the sake of Allah and did not forgo [sacrificing] their lives [for the sake of] the homeland...

"In [our] intoxicated happiness [at the release of the prisoners], we must not overlook those who first brought about this happiness, those martyrdom-seekers who subdued the Zionists, shamed their intelligence apparatuses, humiliated them, and insisted on sacrificing their lives for the success of their cause and the liberation of their homeland. We must recall the words of these heroes:

"The martyr Hatem Talal Sha'ban said in his will: 'I chose this path out of my belief that it is the only path to liberating our land. The Muslim ummah must follow the path of jihad for the sake of Allah and forget the path of negotiations and bartering over land'...

"The martyr Darin Abu 'Aisha said: 'The role of the Palestinian woman is no less significant than that of our brothers, the mujahideen. My self-sacrifice for the sake of Allah is but a small [matter]. It comes to avenge the [desecration] of the sanctity of our religion and mosques, [including] Al-Aqsa.'

"Umm Nidal, mother of the martyrs Muhammad, Nidal, and Yasser Farhat, said to her son Muhammad, upon bidding him a tearful farewell before he blew himself up in battle with the Zionists: 'You must believe that my tears are those of a mother marrying off her son to the black-eyed [virgins of Paradise]. Obey God, wage jihad, and stand firm until you meet with God.' This great woman then turned to the women of the ummah, saying: 'Whoever loves Allah and the homeland will sacrifice her son for their sake. The mother who loves her son wishes him success in this world and the next, urges him to jihad and martyrdom, swallows her pain... and prevents the enemies of our people from gloating'...

"The greatness and genius of the Palestinian negotiator was highlighted in the demands that the [Shalit] deal include prisoners from all the factions, as an expression of the unity of Palestinian blood, and prisoners from all parts of the homeland – Gaza, the West Bank, residents of the so-called '48 [territorities] – as an expression of the unity of the Palestinian homeland, from the sea to the river...

"[The deal, which was signed] under Egyptian auspices, gives expression to the strategic depth and patronage Egypt affords the true resistance, especially after Egypt's popular position stressed a clear resistance to any Zionist diplomatic presence on its soil. This great achievement was one of the expressions of the blessed Egyptian revolution and a clear sign of the progress of the Arab-Islamic enterprise for liberation, at the expense of the Zionist enterprise, which is breaking apart from day to day. All this is to say that the ummah is only a small way away from liberating Al-Aqsa...

"[All] sides in Palestine should sieze this historic moment and complete the reconciliation, so that they may channel all their energies toward restoring the usurped land and revoked rights, rather than some of them throwing themselves at the US's doorstep or wandering about the negotiations tables, which have never restored the revoked rights and which only legitimize the enemy. There is no need to despair before an enemy that is defeated...

"Do not say: The sower has sowed, and the oppressor has reaped; Al-Aqsa is gone; our Jerusalem, Haifa, Jaffa, and Safed are lost...

"Victory for Allah is at hand. The enemies of Allah will receive no help from Him. The aggressor will never achieve his aim in Jerusalem, as long as we have one child in it."[15]


MB emblem, with motto: "Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our exemplar. The Koran is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope." Beneath the sword: "Be ready!"[16]

In another article on the site, Dr. Muhammad 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Masri said that the conflict between the Muslims and the "Zionist state" was, at heart, a religious conflict, and that jihad must be waged wherever Islamic land was occupied: "The conflict between the Zionist state and the Muslim ummah is not like the fight between a landowner and a plundering occupier. This fight is, in essence, a struggle of faith, a cultural struggle, [one over] fate and existence...

"According to the Islamic point of view, this fight must be based on faith in jihad for the sake of Allah, regardless of the nature of the oppressor or of his national or religious background. The occupation of Islamic land by any enemy necessitates jihad, and Islam considers this a religious fight.

"The Koran indicates that this fight [will continue] until the Day of Judgment, and it [defines] the nature of the Jews. It must be clarified that when the Muslim ummah fights the Jews, it does not do so because they are Jews, but because they are aggressors and oppressors who target Islam and the Muslim ummah."[17]

Wishing for the Destruction of the State of Israel

In another article, Dr. 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Bar called to support "the jihad of the resistance materially, in the media, and morally," and expressed his hope that Israel would soon be destroyed: "The [Palestinian] cause will remain a prime concern for the [Muslim] ummah, until Allah heralds the end of the racist state of occupation [i.e. Israel], and until the last of the people of our ummah fights the swindling Jews and their armies and delivers the land from their wickedness... [It was related by the Prophet's Companion] Abu Huraira that the Prophet said, 'Judgment Day will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and kill them. The Jews will hide behind stones and trees, and the stones and trees will call: O Muslim, o servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him - except for the gharqad tree, which is the tree of the Jews.'"[18]


Dr. 'Abd Al-Rahman Al-Bar, member of the Muslim Brotherhood General Guide's Office and the IUMS[19]

Dr. Saleh Sultan, head of the Jerusalem Committee of the IUMS, wrote about the "Zionist deceit" aimed at destroying the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and encouraged killing Zionists: "There is nothing to stop the destruction of [our] holy places other than a clear message saying: 'Kill a Zionist in response to every stone [dismantled] from the honorable Al-Aqsa'... Together, we will all expose the facts of the Judaization of Jerusalem and [the Zionists'] plan to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and we will get ready to say: 'Kill a Zionist for every stone of Al-Aqsa [that is dismantled].'"[20]


Dr. Saleh Sultan, head of the Jerusalem Committee of the IUMS[21]

*B. Chernitsky is a research fellow at MEMRI.

Endnotes:

[1] Muhammad Al-Katatni, secretary general of the party, said that the Egyptian parliament would reserve the right to reconsider any agreement it felt was not to Egypt's advantage. Muhammad Al-Biltagi, the party's secretary in Cairo, said that the Egyptian people had the right to amend the peace and gas export agreements with Israel to better serve Egypt's interests, in accordance with international law. Rashad Bayoumi, deputy to MB General Guide Muhammad Badi', said that the MB would not recognize Israel, as it was an occupying and oppressive entity, and that none of its members "would ever [even] sit beside an Israeli." At the current stage, he said, the MB would honor international agreements, but would take the necessary steps to bring these agreements before parliament or to referendum for approval. Another Freedom and Justice senior official, Mahmoud Qeshta, even called for Umm Al-Rashrash (present-day Eilat) to be restored to Egypt, calling it "a dear part of Egypt still occupied by the Zionist entity," noting that in the past, Egypt's borders had reached to Jordan, and Israel had had no seaport. According to Qeshta, this issue would be raised in the next parliament. Al-Hayat (London), January 1, 2012; Al-Ahram (Egypt), December 30, 2011, November 10, 2011; Ikhwanonline.com, December 8, 2011.

[2] Ikhwanonline.com, December 10, 2011. 'Issam Al-'Arian, deputy head of the party, said in a New York Times interview that since the Camp David Accords had been signed by Egypt the state, rather than by a movement or party, the MB would honor them. New York Times (US), January 8, 2012.

[3] Ikhwanonline.com, June 2, 2011.

[4] Ikhwanonline.com, May 23, 2011.

[5] Also known as the Battle of the Confederates, the Battle of the Trench was fought in 627 and is mentioned in the Koran in Sura 33, Verses 7-27. According to Islamic tradition, the Banu Quraysh tribe, among Muhammad's Meccan enemies, convinced the Jews of Medina's Banu Qurayza tribe to take their side in the battle against Muhammad and his supporters, but Muhammad ultimately emerged victorious. Following the battle, the men of the Banu Qurayza tribe were killed and its women and children sold into slavery.

[6] Ikhwanonline.com, September 24, 2011.

[7] Ikhwanonline.com, October 20, 2010.

[8] Ikhwanonline.com, October 23, 2010. The author also cited a book called Jewish Society by Zaki Shnouda, which describes the Jews as "savages" and "unscrupulous, ravenous wolves, mad dogs, lunatic pigs, and blinded by hatred."

[9] Ikhwanonline.com, October 25, 2010.

[10] Kurt Gerstein was an SS officer who worked to expose information about the Nazis' extermination of the Jews, hoping to stop it. After visiting active death camps in Poland, he reported on what he had witnessed to a Swedish diplomat he met on his train back to Germany from Poland, and later attempted to involve the Catholic Church. See http://lib.cet.ac.il/Pages/item.asp?item=14818.

[11] Ikhwanonline.com, January 31, 2010.

[12] Ikhwanonline.com, January 31, 2010.

[13] The Haavara Agreement between the Zionist movement leadership and Germany's Nazi authorities, first drafted in 1933, was meant to facilitate the emigration of Jews from Germany to Palestine. According to the agreement, the Nazis could confiscate property from the Jews, who would, in exchange, be partially compensated and allowed to leave the Nazi regime unharmed. See http://lib.cet.ac.il/pages/item.asp?item=15582. It should be noted that in his book The Other Side: The Connection between the Nazis and the Leaders of the Zionist Movement, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud 'Abbas discussed the agreement, claiming that the Zionist movement had conspired against the Jewish people and collaborated with the Nazis to exterminate it, because the movement considered Palestine the only appropriate destination for Jewish emigration. See MEMRI Inquiry & Analysis Series Report No.95, "Palestinian Leader: Number of Jewish Victims in the Holocaust Might be 'Even Less Than a Million...' Zionist Movement Collaborated with Nazis to 'Expand the Mass Extermination' of the Jews," May 30, 2002, Palestinian Leader: Number of Jewish Victims in the Holocaust Might be 'Even Less Than a Million...' Zionist Movement Collaborated with Nazis to 'Expand the Mass Extermination' of the Jews.

[14] Ikhwanonline.com, October 13, 2011.

[15] Ikhwanonline.com, October 20, 2011.

[16] Ikhwanonline.com, December 8, 2011.

[17] Ikhwanonline.com, October 13, 2011.

[18] Ikhwanonline.com, November 24, 2011.

[19] Ikhwanonline.com, December 29, 2011.

[20] Ikhwanonline.com, November 19, 2011.

[21] Ikhwanonline.com, November 19, 2011.