Indeed, Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, a prominent Muslim Brotherhood leader, assured the West that there was nothing to worry about (emphasis mine):
We are mindful, however, as a nonviolent Islamic movement subjected to six decades of repression, that patent falsehoods, fear mongering and propaganda have been concocted against us in Mubarak’s palaces the past 30 years and by some of his patrons in Washington. Lest partisan interests in the United States succeed in aborting Egypt’s popular revolution, we are compelled to unequivocally deny any attempt to usurp the will of the people. Nor do we plan to surreptitiously dominate a post-Mubarak government. The brotherhood has already decided not to field a candidate for president in any forthcoming elections. We want to set the record straight so that any Middle East policy decisions made in Washington are based on facts and not the shameful - and racist -- agendas of Islamophobes.That last bit, the "shameful -- and racist -- agendas of Islamophobes" was classic. This guy has a great future as a copywriter for Media Matters or Think Progress.
Who is Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh?
Why he's also the guy quoted in a NY Times Op-Ed assuring the nuanced Times readers that the Muslim Brotherhood really wasn't that important in Egypt:
Many people outside Egypt believe that the Brotherhood gains political influence by providing health clinics and charity for the poor. But the very poor in Egypt are not very politically active. And according to Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, a former member of the Brotherhood’s Guidance Council, the group has only six clinics in Cairo, a city of 18 million. Many of the other clinics are Islamic in orientation simply because most Egyptians are Islamic. The wealthier businessmen who often sponsor them tend to shun the Brotherhood, if only to protect their businesses from government disapproval.Mr. Aboul Fotouh is a man of his word. The Muslim Brotherhood is not running a candidate for president.
But there is a prominent Muslim Brotherhood member running for president as an "independent," and that person just happens to be Mr. Aboul Fotouh:
Notwithstanding the official Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood's promise not to seek the presidency or any other positions of power, Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, 60, member of the MB's Shura Council and head of the Egyptian Doctors' Union, has announced he would run for president in Egypt's coming election.As Stanley Kurtz points out, the situation in Egypt is grim:
The situation in Egypt grows more worrying by the day. As I tentatively noted earlier, and as now seems more likely, a prominent member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, is preparing to stand for Egypt’s presidency. Moneim Aboul Fotouh is running without official Muslim Brotherhood authorization, and may even have to formally break with the organization for doing so. That’s because the Muslim Brotherhood has promised not to put up a candidate for the presidency. But if Moneim Aboul Fotouh runs anyway, as now seems likely, it would mean at least a realistic prospect of Islamist control of both parliament and the presidency of a new Egypt.Wait, didn't Obama assure us that the Google Guy was the future of Egypt, and that he hoped one day to see the Google Guy as president?
It's a good thing we helped force Mubarak out of office "yesterday." Because no one could have seen this coming, right? Certainly not The NY Times.
And certainly not the White House Guy who fell in love with the Google Guy.
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube
Visit the Legal Insurrection Shop on CafePress!