JAFFA, Israel – “Our beautiful religion has been hijacked by some Muslims, who turned it into a faith of violence, extremism, and terror,” a high-profile columnist has written in the prominent Egyptian daily Shourouk.
“Islam is a religion of peace, love, and tolerance,” wrote Imad Aldin Hussein, “but people from our own midst caused more damage than our worst enemies ever did.”
“Since the United States invented the mujahideen [to counter the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979], the Islamic State and al-Qaeda labeled Islam’s image as a religion of terror and violence,” he continued.
“After 9/11 – from which Israel benefited a lot – we thought it was over, but then an al-Qaeda man was caught boarding a plane with gunpowder in his shoes, after which every air passenger has been requested to take off his shoes,” he added. “And then, we were banned from taking liquids on board. Every person who goes through this embarrassing procedure does one thing: Curse Muslim extremists.”
Evoking counterterrorist measures enacted by the French and Belgian governments in the wake of the deadly attacks on their respective capitals, Hussein wrote:
The extremists libeled us. Our religion is now synonymous with killing, destruction, and terror. It is the only merchandise we can sell. Whereas the Zionist entity, which exercises state terror, sits back and marvels at the ignorance, stupidity, primitiveness, violence, and extremism that are so prevalent in Muslim countries.
Meanwhile, an Egyptian delegation of politicians, public officials, and human rights activists will visit the United States next month in a bid to lobby Congress to declare the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization.
Dalia Ziyada, the director of the Egyptian Center for the Study of Democracy and one of the organizers of the delegation, said that a Congressional committee has already come out in favor of banning the Brotherhood.