The Government’s review into the Muslim Brotherhood found that the group has “openly incubated and sustained an organisation – Hamas – whose military wing has been proscribed in the UK” and defended Hamas attacks in Israel. It is shocking to see the Foreign Affairs Committee undermine this assessment and position the Muslim Brotherhood as a potential “firewall” against extremism.
The Foreign Affairs Select Committee has released its report into “Political Islam” and the Muslim Brotherhood, which attacks previous assessments of the group and suggests that “some political-Islamist groups have broadly been a firewall against extremism and violence”.
However, this overlooks the character and activities of the Muslim Brotherhood. Past government review has highlighted that the group “facilitate[s] funding” for Hamas, while “senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood routinely use virulent, anti-Semitic language”. In addition, the review found that “senior Muslim Brotherhood figures and associates have justified attacks against coalition forces in Iraq and Afghanistan”.
The review also stated that the Muslim Brotherhood has opted for non-violent incremental change in the past, but has done this “on the grounds of expediency, often on the basis that political opposition will disappear when the process of Islamisation is complete”. They have also been willing to “countenance violence – including, from time to time, terrorism – where gradualism is ineffective”.
Individuals associated with the Muslim Brotherhood in the UK, meanwhile, have “applauded suicide bombing by Hamas, in some cases against civilians”. Terrorist activities carried out by Hamas “have not been publicly disowned or condemned”, while Muslim Brotherhood member Sayyid Qutb’s literature is known to have inspired terrorism in the UK.
Davis Lewin, Deputy Director at The Henry Jackson Society, said: “It is dangerous folly to imagine that the Muslim Brotherhood’s version of political Islam can be part of any solution to the Islamist violence that now blights the globe.
“The British Government has, at the highest level, established firmly that its leading ideologue’s texts have been used to justify Al Qaeda, that it condones suicide bombings, and that leading members condone attacks on our troops. No British politician should open the door to people who hate us.”