The Reconfiguration of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt

(Institute for National Security Studies) Erez Striem - In the summer of 2013, the Egyptian military toppled the Muslim Brotherhood-led government. In its wake, decision-making in the organization has become decentralized, so that the cells operating in the field enjoy greater freedom of action. The movement's leadership, which is almost entirely in prison or exile, is incapable of enforcing its decisions. The switch to less centralized activity has exposed the Muslim Brotherhood to the external influences of Salafi operatives and religious figures holding more extreme attitudes. The process of Muslim Brotherhood members slipping into various types of violent action is clear. A number of former activists have joined the Islamic State branch in the Sinai Peninsula over the past two years. Meanwhile, global jihadi groups affiliated with the Islamic State and al-Qaeda are making strenuous efforts to penetrate the vacuum left by the decline in Muslim Brotherhood power and influence. The reported consolidation of Islamic State cells in recent months in the Cairo area and close to the Egyptian-Libyan border indicates an effort to expand the Islamic State's activity beyond Sinai to Egypt itself. The loss of direction by the Muslim Brotherhood has left a huge reserve of angry and frustrated young people eager to take revenge against the regime.

2015-12-23 00:00:00

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