In a recent address, Egyptian TV host Ibrahim Eissa warned that the diminishing clout of the Salafis seen in the first phase of Egyptian elections should not be viewed as a victory over Salafi ideology. Bringing footage of cleric Muhammad Hussein Yacoub, who claimed that the role of women was to "give comfort and have carnal relations," and ridiculing his claims as "insane and deranged nonsense," Eissa warned that "the problem is deep-rooted" and that this discourse is promoted by the state and "has been planted in people's brains for 40 years."
Following are excerpts from his address, which aired on Al-Kahera Wal-Nas TV on November 3, 2015.
Ibrahim Eissa: Anyone who thinks that the setback of the Al-Nour Party and the Salafis in the parliamentary elections – they have only garnered eight seats in the first voting phase, and may get a similar number or a little more in the second phase… Thinking that this spells victory over Salafi ideology is pure madness. If you analyze the data, and see that in the West Delta, Al-Nour Party received 500,000 votes, and that in Beheira and Mersa Matruh, the Salafis were dominant, you realize that the problem is deep-rooted. This is not about parliamentary representation, but about the mutilation and destruction of the Egyptian mind, by those people and those ideas. Watch the following excerpt, for example, so I can explain what I want to say about the people who are destroying Egyptian society, the Egyptian mind, the Egyptian understanding of religion, and the true understanding of religion. Let's watch.
Clip of a sermon delivered by Egyptian cleric Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Yacoub
Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Yacoub: What is a woman's role in life? What is she supposed to do? What is she supposed to do? Our Lord said: "It is He who created you from a single soul, and made from his mate, that he might find comfort with her. When he has carnal relations with her…" This is the job of the woman: To give comfort and to have carnal relations. People say: "You want to send women back in time." It's not me! It's God.
The husband is the master. It's not me saying this. This is Islam. Why is he the master? Because he is the one who provides.
Every penny that the wife spends on household expenses diminishes your manliness. Every pound that she spends diminishes your manliness. It diminishes your manliness by a pound. One pound – one percent of your manliness. Two pounds – two percent. Three pounds – three percent. What happens when it reaches 50 pounds? 50% of your manliness, and you and she become just the same. This is why the jurisprudents say that the one who provides should be obeyed, and that if a husband refrains from providing for his wife, she does not have to obey him.
Ibrahim Eissa: Okay. What Hussein Yacoub says is insane and deranged nonsense. These are not merely Bedouin, desert notions. This is a backward understanding of religion. But this is the type of idiotic ideology that prevails. It has been planted in people's brains for 40 years. The state protects this discourse. The state loves what this idiot has to say.
Muslim Arabs have been hearing nothing but this putrid talk for 40 years.