In January 2010, Mohammed Badie (also spelled Muhammad Badi), formerly responsible for ideological education for the Muslim Brotherhood took over as General Guide, the top position in the organization. According to the Carnegie Guide to Egypt’s Elections
“Badie’s election was generally viewed as a victory for the Brotherhood’s conservative wing and a marginalization of its reformist trend.”
A report by the Brookings Institute provides some background on Badie. The report quotes Abdel Moneim Mahmud, a journalist associated with the group’s reformist wing, who explains, “Badie is one of the sons of the 1965 Organisation. They were introduced to what was a military organisation that preached revolution…” According to Mahmud, although he had been “disowned by some Brotherhood members for his radical views, Badie and others in the movement continued to embrace Qutb, who advocated armed struggle to impose Islamic law.”
Badie’s first public address
, following his selection as leader of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in January, 2010, offered relatively moderate words about the organization’s role in Egyptian society and its attitude towards the government. His stance towards Israel, “the Zionist entity,” and the American presence in the region, however, is uncompromising. Badie called for “continuous jihad to liberate the nation from any foreign dominance or intellectual, spiritual, cultural hegemony and economic, political or military colonialism.” In his view, “The Zionist state seeks the abolition and cancellation of our values, cultures and Islamic identity for its western values, which seeks the destruction of our faith and morals in our countries.” Badie describes the struggle against Israel as a “priority” for the Brotherhood and he expands on what this entails:
[The Arab and Muslim regimes] have forgotten, or are pretending to have forgotten, that the real enemy lying in wait for them is the Zionist entity. They are aiming their weapons against their own peoples, while avoiding any confrontation with these Zionists and achieving neither unity nor revival for their nations. Moreover, they are disregarding Allah’s commandment to wage jihad for His sake with [their] money and [their] lives, so that Allah’s word will reign supreme and the infidels’ word will be inferior…
“Today the Muslims desperately need a mentality of honor and means of power [that will enable them] to confront global Zionism. [This movement] knows nothing but the language of force, so [the Muslims] must meet iron with iron, and winds with [even more powerful] storms. They crucially need to understand that the improvement and change that the [Muslim] nation seeks can only be attained through jihad and sacrifice and by raising a jihadi generation that pursues death just as the enemies pursue life.
He goes on to advocate an unending violent jihad against the “Zionist entity” until it is destroyed. “Resistance is the only solution, ” he declared.
Badie’s words clearly indicate that given the opportunity, he would abrogate the peace accord Egypt signed with Israel: “It is your obligation to stop the absurd negotiations, whether direct or indirect, and to support all forms of resistance for the sake of liberating every occupied piece of land in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, and all [other] parts of our Muslim world. … You must revoke all the agreements of capitulation…. especially the Camp David Accords… which go against the Egyptian constitution and U.N. resolutions, and do not therefore obligate Egyptian senior officials.” ( United Jerusalem Foundation, September 2010.)
Badie condemns terrorism, but does not consider attacks against Israelis and American forces in the Middle East as terrorism: “Jihad must not be likened to terror. Jihad means making sacrifices in order to restore what has been stolen, defend one’s property, expel the occupier, and make Allah’s word supreme, while terror is occupying someone else’s land…” (IkhwanOnline, March 18, 2010.)
Concerning the U.S., Badie shares his belief that “The U.S. is now experiencing the beginning of its end, and is heading towards its demise…”(Memri).