Published Dec 22, 2011 on Big Peace
As a political activist in Egypt, I was under constant surveillance by Mubarak’s so-called “moderate regime” for nearly a decade by state security; my crime was promoting secularism, freedom, human rights, and free market economic policy in my home country. While I was almost entirely banned from the public political discourse, Salafist jihadists had full access to Mubarak’s state-run media.
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This should come as no surprise, as jihadism was—and remains—a de-facto ideology that is central to the state and the military regime that rules Egypt today. Over the last year in Middle East Quarterly—and during my testimony before Congress earlier this month—I traced the secret history of the Egyptian regime and their ideological ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and similar jihadist groups. I also knew that these links went as far as al Qaeda-style Salafist terrorist getting their direct orders from state security. Now we’ve got a confession from one of Egypt’s leading Islamist figures.
The most prominent leader of the most aggressive form of militant Islamism in Egypt is Mohammed Hassan—who is now fully supported by the military and working as their mouthpiece. In addition to a history of opposing any anti-Mubarak protests, Hassan has incited suicide terrorist attacks in Gaza; advocates genocide of Jews, Christians and westerners; praised Osama Bin Laden repetitively.