Regarding the claims that Muslim Brotherhood group avoids violence, and do not force anyone to adopt an opinion or faith.
The Brotherhood’s founder Hassan Al-Banna adopted a violent approach in his writings, known as ‘Messages of Imam Hassan Al-Banna’.
In the fifth conference of the Brotherhood held in 1938, Al-Banna replied to a question on whether the MB intends to use force to achieve their goals. He said, “Islam’s slogan is the power of faith, unity and weapon. The Muslim Brotherhood will use force only after they ensure their faith and unity.”
The Brotherhood was dissolved in December 1948. The decision was accompanied by a note showing the group’s terrorist crimes. In return, Al-Banna issued a statement refuting all the government’s claims. Little did he know that some of his future followers would disclose the truth.
The Government Statement on the Bombings of Cairo’s Police Stations
On December 24, 1946, a number of assailants attacked several police stations in different districts in Cairo, of whom two suspects affiliating to the Brotherhood have been arrested and referred to the criminal court, which found that one of them was guilty in case No. 767 for the year 1946.
Al-Banna replied, “The convicted person in case No. 767 for the year 1946 at Abbdeen Court has not shown any evidence of receiving orders from the Brotherhood’s leadership to attack the police stations. Such types of acts were wide spread among the Egyptian youth at the time who wanted to express their national patriotism in conjunction with the previous negotiation with the British occupation. Alexandria had witnessed more violent acts than Cairo, and more suspects were arrested, however no one had claimed their affiliation to the Brotherhood.”
Some forty years later, one of Al-Banna’s followers, Mahmoud Al-Sabbagh, who was a member of the “secret organization” inside the MB said, “The Brotherhood had to show the government and the British occupation that their attempts to legalize the foreign occupation of Egypt will be faced by armed confrontation. The MB secret organization planned to bomb a number of police stations in Cairo on December 3, 1946 after 10:00 pm. The MB members used sound bombs in their attacks to only cause terror upon the security personnel without causing any casualties. The attacks targeted Al-Mousky, Al-Gamalyia, Al-Azbakyia, Misr Al-Kadeema, and Al-Salakhana police stations. None of the perpetrators of these attacks had been arrested. Hence, the government was terrified of a popular uprising. More bombings took place at the police stations of Abbdeen, Al-Khalifa, and Imbaba.”
The Attack on King George Hotel and Al-Banna’s Equivocation
The government’s statement also mentioned another attack in 1947, when the Brotherhood attempted to bomb the King George Hotel in Ismailia.
“The investigation in case No.4726 for the year 1947 proved that a member of the Brotherhood had thrown a bomb at the King George Hotel in the city of Ismailia, which left a number of causalities including the offender himself.”
Al-Banna replied confidently, saying, “The suspect in case No.4726 for the year 1947 was found insane and irresponsible for his acts. Why has the government mentioned that case in an official memo? How could the Brotherhood be responsible for an attack whose suspect was proven insane and irresponsible for his behavior?”
Another one of Al-Banna’s followers, Salah Shady, said in his book ‘Life’s Harvest’: “We agreed to attack the King George Hotel and tasked Refaat Al-Naggar to carry out the mission. Al-Naggar, who was working at the air force, put a file containing explosives at the lobby of the hotel, though one of the British Intelligence officers was suspicious about Al-Naggar and tried to arrest him. Al-Naggar insisted to accomplish the mission whatever the costs, so he returned to the lobby and held the explosives until they blew up. He suffered serious wounds and was arrested. The Brotherhood sent lawyers to defend Al-Naggar, who alleged that he suffered from mental illness so the criminal liability was dropped.”
The Mount Incident
The MB secret organization used to provide training for its members in the Mokattam mount area, within Cairo. The government’s note on banning the MB said: “On January 19, 1948, fifteen persons, affiliated to the Brotherhood, had been captured in the Mokattam mount area while being trained to use weapons and grenades.”
Al-Banna replied, “Most of the fifteen suspects in the Mokatam case have no relation with the Muslim Brotherhood. Moreover, they admitted that they were training to volunteer in the army, which was preparing to fight in Palestine against Zionists. The Egyptian prosecution released all the suspects for their noble purpose. So what sort of condemnation can be directed to the Brotherhood?”
The facts about this case were disclosed in 1987, when Ahmed Adel Kamal, one of the leaders of the MB secret organization announced, “We had been assigned to search for a suitable location to train the MB members on using arms and explosives secretly. We selected the Mokattam mount for the training. Two groups were sent daily to the location; the first one started from dawn to mid-day while the other group started from mid-day to dawn, and they were not supposed to meet.
The training lasted for a long time until the cars left visible tracks on the desert sands. The police was informed about the training by some quarry workers in the area. The training leader became less careful about security measures due to the repetition of the training for a long period. They were surprised to find police forces surrounding the training location ordering them to surrender while the MB members were taking their training.”
Kamal added: “The MB members said in the interrogation that they were training to fight in Palestine. The group had already registered their names at the volunteering centers. We also agreed with Mohammad Amen Al-Hosaini, Palestine’s Mufti and the head of Supreme Arab Committee, to tell the Egyptian authorities that the captured members were really volunteers to liberate Palestine and the used weapons and ammunition in training belong to the Supreme Arab Committee.”
The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and its Palestinian branch under leadership of Al-Hosaini cooperated in deceiving the Egyptian authorities which released the suspects for their noble purpose.
Kamal concluded: “Nevertheless, this incident had a long-term effect, as the police forces had seized a list of names, known as the “Mount List”, which included 100 members of the MB secret organization with their secret codes arranged in groups. None of the organization’s leaders knew about the secret list, even the training group’s leader did not mention anything about it. This list appeared later in other cases and was used as a strong piece of evidence against the Brotherhood.”
Al-Khazindar and the Targeting of Judges
The Brotherhood’s crimes extended to judges who have always been trusted by all Egyptians, and carry out their role honestly in the judiciary system.
In an attempt to terrorize the judges, the MB members assassinated Judge Ahmed Al-Khazindar, deputy of Cairo Court of Appeals, after he convicted some group’s members finding them guilty of bomb attacks.
The Trial of Al-Sindi
One of the assailants in the assassination of Al-Khazindar was Abdel Rahman Al-Sindi, a secretary of Al-Banna, according to the government note to dissolve the group.
Al-Sabbagh said: “A committee formed by Al-Banna held a trial for Al-Sindi on his offense. The trial was attended by: Al-Banna, Saleh Ashmawi, Sheikh Mohammed Farghali, Khamis Hamida, Abdel Aziz Kamel, Mostafa Mashhour, Ahmed Zaky Hassan, Ahmed Hassanein and Mahmoud Assaf.
Al-Sindi said, during the trial, that he heard the Supreme Guide criticizing Al-Khazandar for his rulings, so he thought that killing him would satisfy Al-Banna. The Supreme Guide was taken aback by the words of Al-Sindi because he knew he was telling the truth.”
Al-Sabbagh continued: “The MB members who attended this trial agreed that Al-Sindi had misunderstood Al-Banna’s criticism in an unprecedented practice of the Muslim Brotherhood members. They considered it as an accidental murder, as none of the MB members had intended to kill Al-Khazindar, but they wanted to kill the indolent nationalism in some members of the educated class in Egypt, such as Al-Khazindar.
The Muslim Brotherhood decided to pay the Diya – financial compensation paid to the victim’s family or heirs of a victim in cases of murder – because of the affiliation of the assailants to the MB group.
Since the Brotherhood is part of the people, and the government had paid the group EGP 10,000 from the people’s money, so we can conclude that the state had paid the Diya on behalf of the group. The Brotherhood had to save the lives of the other suspects in the case, including Mahmoud Zainhom and Hassan Abdel Hafiz.”
So the Brotherhood court was formed by the leaders of the group, who decided that the crime was an accidental murder, and the penalty would be paying the Diya which had been already paid by the state, while the group had to rescue the rest of its members!
The Bombing of the Court of Appeals
A number of people from MB secret organization attempted to blow up the Court of Appeals in Cairo, where the case files of the so-called “Jeep Car” case were kept. Mustafa Mashhour, one of the leaders of the secret organization and the fifth Supreme Guide from 1996 to 2002, was the main suspect in this case.
Mashhour was caught driving a car laden with weapons and bombs, which the organization used in their exercises, in addition to some documents containing the plans and strategies of the group.
The Brotherhood decided to burn these documents from within courthouse, and sent Shafiq Anas to carry out the operation. The operation failed and Anas was arrested outside the court while he was trying to flee the scene.
Maher, Al-Nokrashy and Abdel Hady
On February 24, 1945, Ahmed Maher pasha, Egypt’s former prime minister, was on his way to the Parliament to deliver a speech, when a young man called Mahmud Al-Essawy, believed to be an MB member, shot him dead.
Al-Banna, Ahmed Al-Sokkary, Abdel Hakeem Abdeen, and other members of the Brotherhood were arrested after the crime, but were soon released after Al-Essawy claimed his affiliation to the National Party.
Much evidence pointed to the affiliation of Al-Essawy to the Brotherhood, however he claimed his affiliation to the National Party in order to protect the Brotherhood organization from prosecution.
Hence, it was surprising that the Brotherhood tried to kill Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser in October 1954.
A few years later, Sayyid Qutb tried to overthrow Abdel Nasser through a military organization established for this reason. However, the security services foiled the plot, and arrested six leaders of the group, led by Sayyid Qutb, who was executed in 1966.
The investigations conducted by the Egyptian security authorities of the bombing of the St. Peter and St. Paul’s Church in Cairo at the end of last year revealed that the planner of the terrorist attack was adopting Qutb’s ideologies.
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