Islamists Are a Minority in the Middle East

(Fathom-BICOM) Sir John Jenkins - Islamism is a set of ideas, a framing system designed to change the world. The Muslim Brotherhood's ultimate objective is to take power and create what they construe as a true Islamic state - an idea they share with all radicalized Islamists including ISIS and other actively violent Islamist movements. There is a tendency in Western circles to see Islamism, particularly its Muslim Brotherhood offshoot, as the authentic expression of an Arab "general will." This is a mistake. In Egypt in 2012, the Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) received 11 million votes out of a possible 52 million. So even at the height of its power it was only gaining 20% of the vote. By the beginning of 2013, 80% of the population said they greatly distrusted the Brotherhood and wanted something else. Since the Arab Spring, support for the Muslim Brotherhood generally across the region has remained constant at 15-25%. The writer, a former UK Ambassador to Syria, Libya, and Saudi Arabia, is executive director of the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) in London.

2017-11-22 00:00:00

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