In April, Breitbart News reported that the White House had hosted members of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood–the radical, anti-woman, anti-American, anti-Israel and pro-terror organization busy taking power in the grim aftermath of the Arab Spring. Now, the Obama administration has gone one step further, hosting an actual terrorist from the Muslim Brotherhood, Hani Nour Eldin, who is part of a group connected to the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
According to Newsweek, Eldin was granted a visa–and high-level visits–despite the fact that his group, the Gamaa Islamiya, is listed as a terrorist organization by the State Department, which is now denying that Eldin is part of the group, despite his own admissions.
What was true about the Muslim Brotherhood in April remains true today:
Al Qaeda itself was inspired by the Muslim Brotherhood and its leaders. The current leader of Al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri, began his terrorist career in Egypt with the Muslim Brotherhood. There are alarming connections between the party taking over in Egypt and the 9/11 attacks in New York and Washington, D.C.
Yet President Barack Obama has decided that the United States should “engage” the Brotherhood, apparently believing that doing so will deter the Brotherhood from its radical course, and grant the United States a voice in the new Egyptian government–as it once had in the dictatorial regime of ousted president Hosni Mubarak, the man Obama abandoned during the so-called Arab Spring. This wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision; Obama was always pro-Muslim Brotherhood, going out of his way in February 2009 to finagle invitations for them to his Cairo speech.
Obama clearly has a soft spot for the Brotherhood. When Iranians took to the streets in 2009 and nearly overthrew their government, President Obama remained on the sidelines, effectively protecting the regime. When it came to the Muslim Brotherhood, however, the Obama administration didn’t hesitate in intervening in Egypt’s internal power struggle, even though there is no sign that American intervention would be any more popular in Egypt than it is in Iran.
In meetings with senior Obama administration officials, Eldin apparently asked that Gamaa Islamiya’s leader, Omar Abdel Rahman, who is currently doing time in North Carolina for his role in planning attacks on New York City, be moved to an Egyptian prison. He was reportedly refused.
The Muslim Brotherhood will soon likely control Egypt, which remains (nominally) an American ally. That means the Obama administration and its successors must deal with it. But it does not mean that any U.S. administration should be in a hurry to “engage” the terrorist group, much less invite it to American soil for high-level meetings. Our best means of leverage remains the billions of dollars in foreign aid that American taxpayers provide to the Egyptian government. Thus far, the Obama administration has defied Congress’s attempt to withhold aid from terrorist governments, such as the Palestinian Authority. It would evidently prefer to coddle terrorists and confront them, gambling our security on the personal charm of our president.