Islamic Herderianism is Coming to Egypt

As a result of recent Egyptian elections, the (so-called moderate) Islamic Brotherhood and (all agree fanatic) Salafists will represent two-thirds of the seats in the new parliament.

Erik Trager of the New Republic interviewed seven of these election winners, all from the Islamic Brotherhood. What he heard from these “moderate” politicians was irrationality, antisemitism, prudery (for example, no beach or alcohol tourism), 9-11 conspiracy theorizing, indifference to Israeli flag burning, support for forbidding banks to charge interest, and the repression of free speech for the Christian minority (10 percent of the population):

Over the past two weeks, I have interviewed seven Brotherhood parliamentarians-to-be.  Far from being moderate, these future leaders share a commitment to theocratic rule, complete with a limited view of civil liberties and an unmistakable antipathy for the West.

What I found especially telling (and troubling) was what Erik Trager reports Alexandria MP al-Mohammadi al-Sayyid saying:

The Christians are Egyptians, and true Egyptians will take the sharia’s side, and not the side of the French.

In other words, the French promote Enlightenment secular values and civil liberties. “True Egyptians” don’t.

If you’re part of the 10% of the Egyptian population that identifies as Christian, it’s time to get out of Egypt. And if you’re a feminist or liberal—or in any way committed to, say, academic or sexual freedom—it’s time to leave.

What a sad and tragic direction Egypt is going in. In the 1970s under Sadat, the country looked like it was heading in a secular direction (no covered women in the streets, etc.).

What happened?

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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