Sunday, January 30, 2011

Islamists to gain ground in Middle East politics

At least that's the way it looks to be unfolding:

As Tunisians Cheer Egypt, Islamist Leader Returns

Now it's being predicted that the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood will also rise to power in Egypt, and replace the current Dictatorship of Mubarak.

Years ago, I posted about the Nazi roots of the Muslim Brotherhood, and the actual, strong, historical connections. It begs the question: how much are they still like that, today? Or can we say, "That was then, this is now?"

There are people who claim that the Muslim Brotherhood is more moderate. It has defenders like Omar Sharif, who see it as a force for good. Can it be? Will it be? Is it possible?

In the late 70's, the Islamists in Iran claimed to be moderate, but we saw what happened when they got power. I think it's that kind of drastic change that Hillary Clinton wants to avoid, while at the same time recognizing that change IS coming:

Clinton: U.S. not taking sides in Egypt
[...] Clinton waffled Sunday on the political upheaval in Egypt, praising and decrying the process in a Fox News interview.

Clinton's diplomatic skills were tested in the interview when pressed about the uprising that has killed more than 50 people in Egypt, where the 30-year autocratic rule of Mubarak is being challenged.

She also hinted the United States sees an end to Mubarak's reign.

"We want to see an orderly transition so that no one fills a void, that there's not a void, that there be a well thought-out plan that will bring about a democratic, participatory government," Clinton said.

Despite the "transition" reference, Clinton said there was confidence in Washington about Mubarak's governance. [...]

I'm sure the White House is hedging it's bets, because they are uncertain about who's going to come out on top. We have just a little influence, but no control, over that. I think that the "orderly transition" that she spoke of is going to be their main focus. It sounds like the best plan. Helping to avoid that "void".

The U.S. is often accused by Leftists of tolerating dictators. But if we over-throw a dictator, like we did in Iraq, we are accused of meddling in foreign affairs where we don't belong. Damned if we do, and damned if we don't.

The fact is, we often have to deal with governments we would rather not deal with, because we have no control and little influence over their internal affairs.

In another interview I read, Clinton said that the Egyptian people are going to choose who their leadership is. I suspect she's right, and we will just have to deal with it.

And if the Muslim Brotherhood is "it", well, lets hope that Omar Sharif's optimism regarding them is at least somewhat justified.

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