Friday, February 11, 2011

My Sixth Guest Piece on Prof. Juan Cole's Informed Comment Blog: "Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood & the Demonstrations: Fact vs. Fiction"

I have a sixth guest piece on Informed Comment, the widely-read blog of Prof. Juan Cole of the University of Michigan's Department of History, who is a noted expert on the modern Middle East and South Asia, with a specialty in Shi'i Islam. The piece is entitled, "The Muslim Brotherhood & the Demonstrations: Fact vs. Fiction." It looks at some of the claims made about the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, such as it "birthed" Al-Qa'ida, and its actual power to "take over." I do not argue, as some may claim, that the Egyptian Brotherhood is socially progressive or democratic or the opposite. I was interested in looking at the validity (or lack thereof) of some of the more fantastic claims made about the movement. Ultimately, I show that claims that even a moderately straight line can be drawn from the Egyptian Brotherhood to Al-Qa'ida Central (AQC) and that it is all powerful inside Egypt are both false.

My first guest piece, "The Islamic State of Iraq’s Positions on Iraqi National Elections: The Continuing Decline of a Self-styled Jihadi State," can be read HERE.

My second guest piece, "The Death of a Caliph: Will the Reported Killings of the Islamic State of Iraq's Two Senior Leaders Spell the End of the Self-styled Jihadi State?", can be read HERE.

My third guest piece, "From 'Martyrdom' Videos to Jihadi Journalism in Somalia," can be read HERE.

My fourth guest piece, "HAMAS' Rhetoric as Spoiler," can be read HERE.

My fifth guest piece, "Hezbollah's Double Standards: Iran, Tunisia, & Popular Protest," can be read HERE.


Anonymous said...

Hello. Thank you so much for this excellent site. I drop by every now and then and always appreciate your insightful analysis. The piece on the Muslim Brotherhood was very insightful indeed. It stimulates thinking and helps me clarify ideas when I'm writing my term papers.
I do have a quick question - maybe this is not the place, so apologies; but I saw some media reports on a new magazine, "Al-Shamikha" and news reports in The Atlantic "Is Al-Shamikha for Real".
I'd be interested in your views and, given your other work discussing "Inspire", makes an interesting comparison.
Many thanks for your time and thank you for such an excellent site.

إبن الصقلي said...

Thank you very much for the very kind compliment!

To answer your question:

Yes, I think Al-Shamikha is really a production of the Al-Fajr Media Center, a shadowy jihadi-takfiri media outlet that distributes media materials for AQ Central, AQ in the Islamic Maghreb, the Islamic State of Iraq, and AQ in the Arabian Peninsula. I don't see any reason to believe that it's not a genuine Al-Fajr release. It was issued through the normal channels online.

The release of Al-Shamikha is interesting when one considers the somewhat sporadic nature of jihadi-takfiri releases aimed at a female audience. The original AQ in the Arabian Peninsula (when it was a Saudi organization) published one issue of a women's magazine, "Al-Khansa' ". An independent jihadi-takfiri media outlet, Al-Somood, published two issues of a women's magazine, "Hafidaat al-Khansa' " but then stopped. Al-Khansa' was a 7th century Arab poetess who converted to Islam and is famous for her elegies about battle, loss, and revenge.

The founder of the Saudi AQ in the Arabian Peninsula, Yusuf al-'Uyayri (Ayiri, Uyairi), wrote a monograph about women & jihad: "The Role of Women in Fighting the Enemies."

Ayman al-Zawahiri's wife Umaymah also wrote a letter to women urging them to participate and aid jihad. It was published in December 2009.

Anonymous said...

Many thanks for your response to my post. Most greatly appreciated. I googled "The Role of Women in Fighting the Enemies" and discovered, which had a copy. Thank you for that clue. (I presume it is a non-extremist site?) I also ran across some of your comments on other sites. All this helps enormously.
Thank you so much; much appreciated. Your site and comments are some of the best.
Warm regards

إبن الصقلي said...

No, it's not a militant site.

Thanks again for your very kind words! I'm glad you find Occident useful!

Very Best