The Muslim Brothers' deceptive pragmatism

Breaking news (photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
Breaking news
(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)

As any in-depth glance at the ideology and history of the Muslim Brothers reveals, the organization''s end goal is to set up a fundamentalist state, ruled according to a very stringent interpretation of Islam in its domestic and foreign policies. 
Rather than embarking on violent jihad, the Brothers believe in spreading their ideas quietly to the masses.
The Brothers believe that if their ideas are transmitted effectively, a majority of the people will eventually demand that the constitution of Egypt (or any other Muslim-majority state)  be changed to fit the Brotherhood''s ideology.
This method of operation has a name: Da''wa
One need look no further than the Muslim Brotherhood''s official English-language website for evidence of these goals. 
In an interview posted on the site with the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood''s Deputy Chairman, Mohammad Ma’mun El-Hudaibi, the core principle is laid out: "The introduction of the Islamic Shari`ah as the basis controlling the affairs of state and society."
Al-Qaeda and the Brothers share the same ultimate vision, but have starkly different ways of operating. 
Unlike al-Qaeda''s Salafi jihadis, who say that violence is a religious duty, the Muslim Brotherhood is working from the roots up,  using social and economic aid programs to build up a support base they hope will one day vote them into power.  
As Prof. Elie Podeh, of the Hebrew University''s Islamic and Middle Eastern politics department remarked to me this week, the organization believes in a "quiet revolution." 
The Muslim Brothers are pragmatic about how they reach their objectives, but not about their final vision. 
My recently published book, Virtual Caliphate, explores al-Qaeda''s virtual presence, and proposes that jihadis have set up an online state to make up for their lack of sovereignty. 
www.yaakovlappin.com