On Thursday, President Obama will "reach out" yet again to what he insists on calling "the Muslim world." Think of it as the 2.0 version of his much-ballyhooed, but seriously deficient, 2009 speech at Al-Azhar University in Cairo.
His message this time, we are told, will be that the death of Osama bin Laden and the outpouring of support for democratic change across the Middle East and North Africa opens a new dawn for Muslims – and even greater opportunities for expanded relations with the United States than he promised two years ago. But will they?
The answer would appear to depend on who actually benefits most from these developments. As things stand now, the answer seems likely to be the Muslim Brotherhood (MB or, in Arabic, Ikwan). If the Brotherhood does indeed come to power in Egypt, Syria, Jordan, "Palestine" (through its local franchise, Hamas) and/or others of the roughly 13 countries in North Africa and the Middle East currently in play, there is no chance that U.S. interests will be served – no matter how much Mr. Obama tries to reach out to Muslims in those regions.
That reality is rooted in the jihadist nature of the Ikhwan and its goals. While some have claimed the organization is non-violent and, in the words of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, even "largely secular" – the most cursory examination of the Muslim Brotherhood’s own words makes clear that such assertions are unfounded, and dangerously so.
Consider the MB’s creed: "Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Qur’an is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope." Not much non-violent or secular about that.
Then, there is a pregnant quote from a 1991 document entitled the Ikhwan‘s "Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goals of the Group." The memo was found in a concealed archive in Annandale, Virginia in 2004. It was introduced into evidence in the successful 2008 prosecution of the first group of defendants in the Holy Land Foundation conspiracy, the largest terrorism-financing prosecution in the nation’s history.
This strategic plan describes the MB’s mission in America as "a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within, sabotaging its miserable house with their [i.e., Americans’] hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions." Secular? Non-violent?
The federal government also has made public another, undated Brotherhood document called, "Phases of the World Underground Movement Plan." It describes precisely how the MB’s mission statement is being operationalized within the United States, and provides a progress report (in italics). Highlights of its key passages make for chilling reading given the prospect of an even-more-aggressive Obama outreach campaign to Muslims, one that would inevitably entail parlaying with the Ikhwan:
Phase One: Discreet and secret establishment of leadership.
Phase Two: Phase of gradual appearance on the public scene and exercising and utilizing various public activities. [The Brotherhood has] greatly succeeded in implementing this stage. It also succeeded in achieving a great deal of its important goals, such as infiltrating various sectors of the Government.
Phase Three: Escalation phase, prior to conflict and confrontation with the rulers, through utilizing mass media. Currently in progress.
Phase Four: Open public confrontation with the Government through exercising the political pressure approach. It is aggressively implementing the above-mentioned approach. Training on the use of weapons domestically and overseas in anticipation of zero-hour. It has noticeable activities in this regard.
Phase Five: Seizing power to establish their Islamic Nation under which all parties and Islamic groups are united.
President Obama can try to promote the illusion that the Muslim Brotherhood does not really intend to act on these ambitions. But the rest of us cannot safely ignore what those ambitions are, or the abundant evidence that the Ikhwan is, indeed, intent on realizing them – and disciplined, organized and ruthless enough to try to achieve them.
Finally, there is the strategic alignment of jihadist forces that led up and assuredly contributed to the so-called "Arab Spring." Two co-authors of the Center for Security Policy’s new book, Shariah: The Threat to America (at Shariahthethreat.com), former Joint Chiefs of Staff advisor Stephen Coughlin and former FBI special agent John Guandolo, have been warning for months about the following developments:
In July 2010, al Qaeda used its new, English-language Inspire magazine to challenge the Muslim Brotherhood to move from the "Meccan phase" (i.e., stealthy forms of jihad) to the "Medinan phase" (i.e., violent jihad). In October 2010, the MB’s recently elected Supreme Guide, Mohammed Badie, issued what amounted to a declaration of war against Israel, the United States and the West. And in January 2011, Al-Azhar University issued a fatwah affirming that offensive operations are a legitimate part of "defensive jihad."
Team Obama missed these ominous developments. In all likelihood its Outreach 1.0 and other missteps actually encouraged them, even before the President called for the immediate removal of one of America’s relatively reliable Arab allies, Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak.
Now, Mr. Obama seems intent on compounding his earlier errors by further embracing Muslim Brotherhood operatives overseas and front organizations here at home. Redoubling such efforts now will only serve to embolden our foes, undermine our friends and endanger our country. Enough already.
Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. is President of the Center for Security Policy (www.SecureFreedom.org), a columnist for the Washington Times and host of the nationally syndicated program, Secure Freedom Radio, heard in Washington weeknights at 9:00 p.m. on WRC 1260 AM.