Islamists are Coming


U.S. Sanctions Hizballah for Syria Support

Aug 10, 2012
On August 10, the Treasury Department sanctioned Hizballah for supporting the Syrian government on the basis of Executive Order 13582. “This action highlights Hizballah’s activities within Syria and its integral role in the continued violence the Assad regime is inflicting on the Syrian population,” the Treasury Department said in its formal announcement.

Saudi Arabia’s Race Against Time

Aug 08, 2012
The Saudi official from the Ministry of Interior’s “ideological security” department was relaxed and confident. The government had uprooted scores of secret al-Qaeda cells, rounded up 5,700 of its followers, and deafened Saudi society to its siren call to jihad to overthrow the ruling al-Saud royal family. For the kingdom, the threat from Islamic terrorists had become manageable. So, what is the main security concern of the Saudi government today? The answer came as something of a surprise: the return of 150,000 Saudis who have been sent abroad to study, nearly one half of whom are now in the United States.

Morocco’s Islamists: In Power Without Power

Aug 02, 2012
Seven months after an Islamist became prime minister for the first time in Morocco’s history, it remains as nebulous here as in Tunisia and Egypt what the Islamists coming to power really portends. It is a conundrum that Islamist-wary Western capitals and independent analysts are all struggling to fathom.

New Era of Relations Between Egypt and Saudi Arabia?

Jul 12, 2012
Newly elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi travelled to Saudi Arabia on July 11. In this exclusive interview, Senior Scholar David Ottaway explains the significance of this trip...

President-elect Mohamed Morsi’s first speech

Jun 26, 2012
The following are translated excerpts from Morsi’s acceptance speech in Arabic on June 24, 2012: In the name of God, the most compassionate, the most merciful. Thanks be to Allah, prayers and peace be upon the messenger of Allah… Egyptian people, you who today are rejoicing and celebrating the feast of democracy in Egypt, you who are standing in squares, in the Tahrir Square and in all the squares of Egypt, my beloved ones, my family and people, my brethren and my sons, who are looking forward to the future, you who want good, rebirth, development, stability, safety and security for our country of Egypt. My beloved ones, I address you thanks to God Almighty. We all thank God for reaching this historic moment, this moment which represents a landmark that has been written with the hands and wills of the Egyptians, their blood, tears and sacrifices, this moment, which we are all shaping with these sacrifices.

Profile of Egypt’s New President Mohamed Morsi

Jun 26, 2012
Who is Mohamed Morsi? Mohamed Morsi Issa el Ayat is a former chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) and a long-time leader in the Muslim Brotherhood. He is a trained engineer educated at the University of Southern California...

How Egypt will shape the new Middle East order

Jun 04, 2012
Egypt’s long election season is not just about forming a new government. The real stakes in the 12-week vote for parliament and the two-stage presidential contest are defining a new order—the critical issue across the Middle East for years to come. The final combination of political forces will influence regional dynamics far beyond Egypt too...

Tunisia’s Islamists Struggle to Rule

May 15, 2012
In stark contrast to Islamist victories elsewhere, Algeria’s election on May 10 produced a “crushing defeat” of two moderate Islamist parties, reports David Ottaway in a new analysis from Algiers. The outcome defied public predictions by Islamist politicians that they would win at least a plurality of seats—and potentially even enough to lead a new government. Two secular parties aligned with the former government instead increased their dominance in the National People’s Assembly, winning 288 seats – or 62 percent of the vote. The moderate Islamists have instead been marginalized politically—a position that may undermine prospects of cooperation with the new government.

Egypt’s Islamist Group: From Terrorism to Politics

May 10, 2012
After three decades underground, Gamaa al Islamiyya (the Islamic Group) has emerged as a formal political player vying for a role in shaping the new order in Egypt. Its evolution—from fighting for God’s rule in Egypt to embracing man-made government—reflects the wider transformation of Islamist movements in the Arab world’s most populous state.

Egypt’s Islamists: A Growing Divide

May 10, 2012
The divide between Egypt’s two most powerful Islamist groups appears to be deepening five months after the country’s first post-Mubarak parliamentary elections. The Muslim Brotherhood, the nation’s oldest Islamist organization, now faces a growing challenge from the younger and ultra-conservative Salafi movement...