As we know from Islamic books of law such as the “Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law,” “Jihad means to war against non-Muslims, and is etymologically derived from the word mujahada signifying warfare to establish the religion…” (Reliance, o9.0, ‘Jihad’). So, there was not much room for doubt about what was being discussed: an alignment of al-Qa’eda and the Muslim Brotherhood under the theological sanction of al-Azhar to transition together to a more militant phase of jihad against the West, Israel, and westernized Middle Eastern regimes that have failed to enforce shariah. The green light from U.S. President Barack Obama had already been given months previously, at his milestone June 2009 Cairo speech.
Yet, with every menacing signal plainly presented by the Brotherhood, as with the blatant criminality of the Soviet regime, the senior national security leadership of the U.S. in 2010-2011 still seemed oblivious to the jihadist threat. So oblivious, in fact, was the Department of State under Secretary Hillary Clinton that in early July 2011, it changed a long-standing policy of no official U.S. government recognition of the Muslim Brotherhood, and indicated that henceforth the U.S. proactively would pursue “engagement” with the Egyptian jihadis. The timeline is just about eight months from the Muslim Brotherhood’s declaration of war against the U.S. to full normalization of relations — initiated by the United States — minus any cessation of Muslim Brotherhood hostilities against the U.S. or its allies or even so much as a hudna [temporary ceasefire].
Even after the Egyptian military, urged on by huge numbers of the Egyptian people, ousted the Muslim Brotherhood government of President Mohammed Morsi in early July 2013, in a decisive coup d’état, followed by bloody street battles with the die-hard jihadis who were also busy slaughtering Coptic Christians across Egypt, the U.S. administration still could not bring itself to turn against its Brotherhood. Muslim Brotherhood penetration of top-level U.S. policy-making circles (as documented by Patrick Poole in a comprehensive June 4, 2013 essay for the MERIA Journal, entitled, “Blind to Terror: The U.S. Governments Disastrous Muslim Outreach Efforts and the Impact on U.S. Middle East Policy”) is certainly part of the explanation for such irresponsible behavior. The self-destructive legacy of 1933 that bequeathed to FDR’s successors a conditioned willingness to turn away from reality, engage in endlessly wishful thinking, and accept appeasement as an alternative to assertion of national will may well account even more directly for the apparent inability of America’s most senior leadership to acknowledge and confront even those enemies who declare war on us.
The next example of the apparently endless capacity of the human mind for self-deception is the U.S. decision, in March 2011, to enter the Libyan civil war on the side of al-Qa’eda. According to news reports, in early 2011 President Obama issued an “Intelligence Finding” that authorized covert assistance to the al-Qa’eda-dominated rebels fighting to overthrow the longtime Libyan ruler, Muammar Qaddafi. Among the known jihadist militias with which Ambassador Christopher Stevens, the State Department’s official envoy to the Libyan rebel forces, coordinated during the 2011 revolution were: the February 17 Martyrs Brigade; the local al-Qa’eda franchise; Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG, led by Afghanistan veteran Abdelhakim Belhadj); Libya Shield (which fought Qaddafi under the black flag of Islam); and various branches of Ansar al-Shariah, another Libyan al-Qa’eda franchise. Now, even if the most senior levels of the U.S. intelligence community somehow were actually under the impression that the Muslim Brotherhood is a “largely secular” organization that “has eschewed violence,” al-Qa’eda surely was generally acknowledged to be an Islamic terror group, man-caused disaster organization, or at the very least, in early 2011, a group that still posed some level of threat to U.S. national security interests. Yet, all the same, the Obama White House took the decision to dedicate diplomatic, financial, intelligence, military, and weapons support to these Libyan al-Qa’eda militias, along with our NATO allies, to help them oust a brutal tyrant, but at the time, a true ally of the U.S. and the West in the fight against AQIM (Al-Qa’eda in the Islamic Maghreb). By mid-July 2011, however, the U.S. had formally recognized the Libyan rebel leadership as the country’s legitimate government—al-Qa’eda, Muslim Brotherhood, and all.Clare M. Lopez
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