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Al-Erian's Response - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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The Iranian “Kayhan” newspaper and Al-Alam [News] channel issued statements attributed to Essam al-Erian, a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood, in which he responded to my article “The Brothers of Iran” [9 November 2009] in which I criticized the Muslim Brotherhood’s General Guide’s “call” to Saudi Arabia and its King [to stop fighting against the Huthi insurgents]. Al-Erian said “There is a secular Saudi Arabian media [apparatus] which is serving American interests, and occasionally [serving the interests] of enemies of the Muslim ummah, at the expense of Arab and Islamic interests, and even Saudi Arabian interests as well.” He added “All of those who are advising Saudi Arabia only wish [the country] good things, and hopes that it does not interfere in disputes that will lead to bloodshed.” Al-Erian also said that “this secular media” does not dare to criticize the US for not supporting Saudi Arabia’s right to defend itself against Huthi aggression, and that “it accuses us [the Muslim Brotherhood] of representing Iran’s interests in the region. This is completely absurd, we do not represent Iran or anybody else; we [only] represent what we believe in with regards to Islamic doctrine and Shariaa Law.”

In response to the above statements, we say that it is clear that al-Erian did not do his research on Washington’s position [on the Huthi attacks], for the US State Department issued a statement to Asharq Al-Awsat a few days ago confirming that the Saudi Arabians have the right to defend themselves. However more important than this is the following question;

What is al-Erian’s response to the statement issued by the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood supporting Saudi Arabia against what it described as a “vicious” Huthi plan?

In its statement, the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood said that anybody who is following what is taking place “from Iraq to Syria to Lebanon to Yemen must clearly be aware that what is happening on Yemeni soil is not taking place in the wilderness, but is part of an ordered plan to create cracks in the demographic and political structure of Arab and Islamic countries. This is in order to sow tension and rip these societies apart, to allow its people and decisions to be controlled.” The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood statement went on to say “the members of the Huthi insurgency creeping onto the territory of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia reveals the hidden intentions of those working on this vicious project which is a project not to defend their presence or demand their rights. Rather this project is the constructing of an entity that can play a strategic role of increasing the disputes and splits in the heart of Arab and Muslim countries.”

The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood said “The Muslim community is not in need of small conflicts that nobody benefits from other than our enemies who are lying in wait, from arrogant global powers to the Zionists. They and their allies only succeed in being more hated and loathed.”

Very well…so is this a statement issued by a “secular media [apparatus]?”

Does the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood statement serve the interests of the US and Israel?

Is this statement any different than what we previously said and are continuing to say?

What is strange here is that al-Erian gave his statement in solidarity to the Iranian Al-Alam [news] channel after it was dropped from the Arabsat and Nilesat satellite providers on the grounds that the Iranian [news] channel supports the resistance. However what we have seen of this channel’s broadcast is that it supports the Huthi [rebels], and so does al-Erian mean to say that the Huthi insurgency is part of the resistance?

If so, who are they resisting, Saudi Arabia or Yemen?

I invite al-Erian to issue a statement to clarify whether the Muslim Brotherhood’s General Guide – or even he himself – had ever issued a statement condemning what the Huthi [rebels] were doing in Yemen, rather than Saudi Arabia.

Therefore we say: yes you are the Brothers of Iran, and this can be proven by al-Erian’s statement!

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat. Mr. Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current affair programs, and during his distinguished career has held numerous positions at Asharq Al-Awsat, amongst other newspapers. Notably, he was the first journalist to interview Osama Bin Ladin's mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a bachelor's degree in media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah. He is based in London.

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