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Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

Two Cheers for the Brotherhood

Can the Muslim Brotherhood be a partner in a democratic Egypt? Not according to neoconservatives and other Middle East hawks. But the trajectory and recent history of the organization tell a more nuanced tale.

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Foreign Policy in Focus

President-for-life Hosni Mubarak is doing what he can to maintain his perch. He has named a new cabinet, deployed more troops in the cities, blocked al-Jazeera broadcasts, and promised not to run for reelection. The opposition, meanwhile, has other plans. Former International Atomic Energy Agency chief and Nobel laureate Mohamed elBaradei has emerged as the leading candidate to manage the transition to democratic rule. In an important political coup, he has obtained the support of Egypt's main opposition movement, the Muslim Brotherhood.

Those two words strike fear into the hearts of many in the West. The “Muslim Brotherhood” conjures up images of radical Islamists turning Egypt into Iran or Afghanistan. As the ever-predictable John Bolton told Fox News, "The Muslim Brotherhood doesn't care about democracy, if they get into power you're not going to have free and fair elections either." Andrew McCarthy agrees over at The National Review, "our see-no-Islamic-evil foreign-policy establishment blathers on about the Brotherhood’s purported renunciation of violence — and never you mind that, with or without violence, its commitment is…to 'conquer America' and ‘conquer Europe.’”

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A right-wing Christian and governor of Kansas, Brownback previously served in the U.S. Senate, where he gained a reputation as a leading social conservative as well as an outspoken “pro-Israel” hawk on U.S. Middle East policy.


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Stephen Hadley, an Iraq War hawk and former national security adviser to President George W. Bush, now chairs the U.S. Institute for Peace.


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