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Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood Vs. its Own People! - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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The Muslim Brotherhood’s standpoint and solidarity with the late leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Musab al Zarqawi, reminded me of the reaction of their counterparts in Kuwait in the wake of Saddam Hussein’s invasion. At the time, some members endorsed a peaceful solution to the crisis, with their country under occupation, while others remained silent, so as not to anger the movement which launched a concerted campaign in support of the Iraqi leader.

history with the death of al Zarqawi, when some members of the Jordanian Brotherhood attended his funeral and paid their condolences. They bestowed on him the honor of being a martyr but denied it to his victims! This comes at a time when Jordan is in a state of war with al Zarqawi’s organization, which bombed three hotels in Amman, killing hundreds of innocent civilians. It has also attempted but failed to carry out other military operations. Al Zarqawi has also carried out several heinous crimes against civilians and recorded his atrocities on videotapes.

Members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan claimed their public support of al Zarqawi was in line with freedom of speech.

Would any recognized political movement support a group that is hostile to its own country and one that carries out military attacks and kills civilians?

Even the Islamic party in Iraq, led by Tariq al Hashemi, hasn’t once uttered similar words, choosing instead to take part in the political process that fought al Zarqawi.

The Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan is the Arab world’s most pampered political party. It is the only group to have been granted a political status for the last fifty years; the government treated it leniently, until it breached the limits of decency. In Egypt , Syria and other countries, members of Muslim Brotherhood have suffered intimidation and imprisonment. Some were even killed because they sought to participate in politics.

Instead of renouncing their colleagues’ behavior and supporting their country, members of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood treated them heroically and threatened to withdraw from politics, under feeble pretexts.

The Brotherhood’s grave standpoint reminded me of the position of Islamist extremists in Saudi Arabia . They used to hail terrorist attacks outside the Kingdom’s borders. But, when the bombing campaign reached Saudi Arabia, they tried to justify it. The government laid out a stark choice: either with the country or against it. The people also rose up against them; since then the matter has been settled.

The Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan ought to make up its mind: it can either support its own citizens or al Qaeda’s terrorists. It is no longer possible to support terrorists shamelessly. The tape of al Zarqawi where he praised the Amman bombings leaves no space for neutrality. The Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan should make it clear whether they are with their fellow citizens or their fellow “brothers”.

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed is the former general manager of Al-Arabiya television. He is also the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, and the leading Arabic weekly magazine Al-Majalla. He is also a senior columnist in the daily newspapers Al-Madina and Al-Bilad. He has a US post-graduate degree in mass communications, and has been a guest on many TV current affairs programs. He is currently based in Dubai.

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