For Islamists Only God's Word Counts

(Daily Star-Lebanon) Abdel Monem Said Aly - Tension on the Palestinian-Israeli front is only one small part of the much deeper strategic transformation that is taking shape in the Middle East, of which the Hamas victory is only one manifestation. In fact, Hamas' ascent to primacy in the Palestinian Legislative Council has contributed to a series of similar changes in the region that extends from Tehran to Cairo. It began in Iran when Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won the Iranian presidential elections and completed the conservative fundamentalist hold on Iranian institutions and politics. Not much later the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt achieved an impressive electoral and political victory in the 2005 parliamentary elections. The Brotherhood gained 88 seats, or 20% of all seats, up from 17 seats or 4% in 2000. Similar developments are taking place in Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon, where Hizballah and versions of the Muslim Brotherhood are politically consolidating their status on the ground or underground. In time, Iran will seek to build the new front of "Momanaa" - a modern-day copy of the Rejection and Steadfastness Front of the 1980s, but this time in religious garb and featuring aggressive policies. The writer is director of the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo.

2006-02-16 00:00:00

Full Article


Visit the Daily Alert Archive