web analytics
March 1, 2015 / 10 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Turmoil In The Land Of The Pharaohs: An Interview With Former Egyptian Radical Dr. Tawfik Hamid

Dr. Tawfik Hamid

Dr. Tawfik Hamid

Egypt’s future remains in flux. On Sunday, Mohammed Morsi of the radical Muslim Brotherhood movement became Egypt’s new president, narrowly defeating the secular Ahmed Shafiq by 52-48 percent. Just two weeks ago, however, Egypt’s military council issued an interim constitution stripping the president of most of his powers. A few days before that, the Supreme Constitutional Court dissolved Egypt’s parliament, controlled by radical Islamic parties, on a legal technicality.

No one is quite sure what the coming days and weeks will bring. Will Morsi fight to restore his office’s authority? Will Egypt’s secular military elite yield to the Muslim Brotherhood? What about Egypt’s masses? Will they stand by silently? Or will they rise up, mimicking last year’s protests that led to the ouster of longtime Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and the deaths of 900 Egyptians?

To answer some of these questions, The Jewish Press recently spoke with Tawfik Hamid, a former Egyptian radical who now lives in the United States and devotes his efforts to reforming Islam and educating the West about radical Islamists. He is also the author of Inside Jihad: Understanding and Confronting Radical Islam and chair for the Study of Islamic Radicalism at the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies.

The Jewish Press: You recently stated that if “the Muslim Brotherhood attains power in Egypt, a war in the Middle East will be inevitable.” Why do you think so?

Hamid: Because the Muslim Brotherhood will work against U.S. interests and the peace treaty with Israel. For example, in one of the latest celebrations for Mohammed Morsi, the main theme was to support Hamas, declare war against Israel, and restore the caliphate with its capital in Jerusalem. On its website, the Muslim Brotherhood doesn’t even mention the word Israel. They call it “the entity” without even writing “Zionist entity.” They consider the word “Zionist” filthy and don’t want to place dirt on their website.

Just recently, the Muslim Brotherhood invited one of Hamas’s leaders to speak in Al-Azhar Mosque and met with him in the parliament. The Muslim Brotherhood also has relatively good relations with the Iranians, who promised to send millions of tourists to Egypt. Furthermore, it now has full control over the Suez Canal.

Finally, these people are unlikely to cooperate with American and Israeli counterterrorism efforts like Egypt’s former regime did. This, in turn, may lead to more terrorist attacks and an escalation of the already existent frictions between Egypt and Israel.

What would you advise Israel or America to do at this point?

I think it’s better for Israel not to comment on what’s happening because any comment may work against them.

I think the United States can play a role by not placing pressure on the military of Egypt at this stage. I’m not saying the military is perfect or good, but with all its faults and mistakes it is still a relative ally to the U.S. It will try to keep the peace treaty with Israel and protect the Suez Canal and U.S. interests.

How do you think matters will unfold in Egypt?

The Muslim Brotherhood will try to demand that the military allow them to write [an Islamist] constitution. They will also demand that the military give legislative power to Morsi, or at least reinstitute the dissolved parliament.

But the military is also fighting for a piece of the cake. They contributed to the revolution, and it was their intervention, if you think about it, that made Mubarak leave. So they feel they deserve a cut, and if the Muslim Brotherhood demands complete power, that will create a situation of violence.

The best outcome, in my view, is that the military retain legislative power and power over the constitution so that we have a secular constitution that can control Morsi.

In fact, I don’t expect Brotherhood to perform very well economically because their agenda is against tourism which is badly needed to save the economy. I think if they show failure in the next two or three months we might have an anti-Islamist revolution. Failure to deliver economically will be evidence for Egyptians that Islam is not the solution and that Islamists are not really the hope for their future.

You currently maintain liberal, western views, but as a youngster, you flirted with radicalism and almost killed a man. Can you talk a bit about your background?

About the Author: Elliot Resnick is a Jewish Press staff reporter and author of “Movers and Shakers: Sixty Prominent Personalities Speak Their Mind on Tape” (Brenn Books).


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Turmoil In The Land Of The Pharaohs: An Interview With Former Egyptian Radical Dr. Tawfik Hamid”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu prays at the Western Wall ahead of his speech next week at the US Congress.
Netanyahu Visits Western Wall before Leaving for US
Latest Indepth Stories
Netanyahu in a previous address to Congress-

Bibi’s speech to Congress will bring respect and honor to the Jewish Nation from the US & the world

Korenblit-022715

Obama & Putin have handwriting/signature clues indicating differences between public & private life

Councilman David Greenfield

It’s time for a new Jewish policy regarding Ramallah, NOT just because of the yarmulke incident

Levmore-022715

“GETT’s” being screened for Israeli Rabbinical Court judges at their annual convention.

If Jackson were alive he’d denounce Democratic party’s silence towards virulent anti-Semitism

Victim of Palestinian Arab terrorism, a victor in NY federal court, after years of being ignored by Justice Dept.

March 2013: Arabs hurled stones hitting the Biton’s car; Adele’s mother swerved the car-into a truck

The real issue is that in many respects the president has sought to recalibrate American values and our system of government.

Former Connecticut senator Joe Lieberman, writing in the Washington Post on Sunday, provided one of the clearest and most compelling analyses we’ve seen of the importance of the prime minister’s speech.

A central concept in any discussion about happiness is achieving clarity. “Ain simcha ela k’hataras hasefeikos” – there is no joy as that experienced with the removal of doubt.

“Je Suis..,” like its famous origin 400 years ago, implies the ability & freedom to think & question

Many anti-Israel demonstrations at universities have a not-so-latent anti-Semitic agenda as well

Believing a few “extremists” hijacked Islam is myopic in history and geography, numbers and scope

More Articles from Elliot Resnick

I said to myself, “This story has got to be told. We’re losing this generation of World War II and if we don’t listen to them now, we’ve lost it.”

Nouril concluded he had no choice: He had to become more observant.

I was very pro-Israel, I was very proud of being Jewish, and I was living in New York at the time as a single man in my 20s and I was just looking for a little bit more.

A school voucher means the state is giving you a voucher to send your kid to whatever school you want. That might be problematic as far church-state issues are concerned.

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

To many Orthodox Jews the issue is “Permitted & Prohibited;” “Right & Wrong” barely considered,

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/interviews-and-profiles/turmoil-in-the-land-of-the-pharaohs-an-interview-with-former-egyptian-radical-dr-tawfik-hamid/2012/06/27/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: