Talk about a “War on Women”: this past week, the White House welcomed members of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, the radical Islamist organization whose Freedom and Justice Party won the largest number of seats in that country’s parliamentary elections and which may take the Egyptian presidency as well.
The Brotherhood remains staunchly anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Christian, anti-Jew — and anti-woman. In an interview posted today by Kerry Picket of the Washington Times, a member of the Brotherhood’s delegation confirmed that sharia, or Islamic law, would guide all lawmaking in Egypt under his party’s rule.
Since its origins in Egypt in the 1950s (correction: 1920s), the Muslim Brotherhood has established branches throughout the Middle East, and contacts in the West as well. It has carried out and supported countless acts of terror and murder, and spread the radical Islamist ideology that sustains public support for terrorism.
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.
Today, President Obama addressed a women’s forum at the White House; later this month, he will convene a “National Women’s Issues Conference” — all an attempt to distract from his economic failures, and retain wavering supporters through a divide-and-rule strategy that he hopes will carry him through the November election.
Obama and the Democrats have fabricated a Republican “war on women” — an incredible and effective political reversal, considering Obama’s own attempt to force religious institutions to provide abortion drugs and contraceptives to employees. However, Obama has made no mention of the actual war on women waged every day and night by the Brotherhood.
The Obama administration does not need to “engage” the Brotherhood. It has other means of influence — not least of which is the generous foreign aid Egypt receives from the U.S. each year.
But President Obama’s foreign policy seems driven by the desire to be loved by America’s rivals in the Islamic world and elsewhere. This is doomed to fail — and worse, to harm American interests in egregious fashion. As Machiavelli once observed, it “is much safer to be feared than loved, when, of the two, either must be dispensed with.” Appeasement has a long and ignominious history of catastrophe.
The Brotherhood has projected a pragmatic image, both to Egyptians and the outside world, as it has cunningly taken advantage of Egypt’s post-Mubarak transition. Yet it ultimately responds to a religious hierarchy and a core constituency that is willing to sacrifice foreign alliances and bread-and-butter concerns to ideological priorities.
In the 2008 election, Gov. Sarah Palin was attacked repeatedly by the left and the mainstream media for accusing Obama of “palling around with terrorists.” It turns out that Palin’s description was, if anything, understating the case — Obama doesn’t only pal around with terrorists, he actively supports them in an attempt to exalt himself and humble the United States.