The illusion of liberty in Egypt

For nearly two weeks all eyes have been on Egypt, many wishing it a new start, but few realizing what that could truly mean.

Public protests broke out late January in Egypt as widespread anger at President Hosni Mubarak and his regime came to a boil. Citizens believed that Mubarak’s nearly 30-year reign of Egypt has been tolerated too long and that the democracy they supposedly have is not working.

Unfortunately, behind the cries of the Egyptian people for a new constitution and real form of democracy are the calculating plans of the Muslim Brotherhood. A political faction founded in Egypt in 1928, the Muslim Brotherhood’s longtime goal has been the implementation of Shari’ah law, an extremist interpretation of Islamic law, according to a report from the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT).

“The vast majority of Sunni terrorist groups — including al Qaeda, Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad — are all derived from the Muslim Brotherhood,” the report said.

Though the group is outlawed in Egypt, it is unofficially tolerated by the current Mubarak’s government and currently has a large following among the Egyptian people, according to the New York Times.

While the Brotherhood has not been overtly active in the recent protests, it is a well-known opposition to Mubarak’s regime and stands posed to take power over Egypt depending on how the people sway.

Should someone overlook the Muslim Brotherhood’s terrorist offspring, they may wonder what the harm would be to leave Egypt in the control of such a well-established political group. To put it simply, this political faction would not simply stop at Egypt.

The Muslim Brotherhood has already vowed to void the 1979 peace treaty with Israel should it come into power, according to the New York Times. This would be the end of Israel’s most important alliance in the Middle Eastern world.

In addition, the Muslim Brotherhood has made it clear that its goals are not simply to take control of Egypt, but to extend itself as far as possible.

“It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, to impose its law on all nations and to extend its power to the entire planet,” Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna said in “The Broken Crescent.”

While the situation in Egypt seems to be gradually improving with the new steps the government has taken, this is not the time to breathe a sigh of relief. Egypt is far from out of the woods and has little rest in sight until the upcoming September elections.

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