While Anes might seem as if he is just a son angry at his father, it is important to bear in mind that his father head Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood, and that his father is deeply radical.
Hamam Sai’d also recently headed the Muslim Brotherhood-Jordanian delegation to Cairo to discuss the possibility of Egypt’s resuming the supply of natural gas to Jordan – a supply that had been interrupted after Mubarak was toppled. Jordan’s Foreign Minister, Nasser Jodeh, described the visit as the result of a “discussion” between the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood and the Jordanian government.
A U.S. Embassy Amman cable, made public by Wikileaks, reported that Hamam Sa’id, “in a posting on the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood website, wrote, “[The Muslim Brotherhood] has become an idea…it is no longer just a movement or group. No legislation will succeed in eliminating or abolishing it. Those who imagine that laws can curb the Brotherhood’s activity are deluding themselves.”
Another U.S. Embassy Amman cable from March 2008, made public by Wikileaks, shows that the U.S. Embassy in Amman has been in touch with Hammam Sa’id’s close ally, Saud Abu Mahfouz, who—according to the leaked cable—told the US Embassy Amman political officers that Hammam Sai’d was “his Shaykh,” as well as other senior members of Hamam Sai’d's associates.
The cable also affirms that, “The future of the Islamist movement in Jordan” is with Hammam Sai’d's religious conservatives, in addition to other conservative Islamist political activists; at the same time the cable highlights the admiration Hammam Sai’d's Islamist followers have for him.
It would be illuminating to know what further communication there has been, and is today, between the U.S. administration and the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood.
If the U.S. administration continues to tolerate the Muslim Brotherhood’s hijacking of the Arab Spring revolution, it appears that Hammam Sai’d holds serious political weight with the Islamists in Jordan, and seemingly knows how to attract followers, despite failing to impress his son.
With a US administration that has such a pronounced record of appeasing Islamists, it is not unlikely that Hamam Sai’d will be accepted and tolerated by the U.S. establishment — at the expense of moderate Jordanians and the secular Jordanian opposition.
Originally published at the Gatestone Institute.
About the Author: Mudar Zahran is a Palestinian writer and academic from Jordan, who now resides in the UK as a political refugee.
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