Osama bin Laden is dead. Al Qaeda may soon follow him to the grave. But the doctrine of jihad – exemplified by the Muslim Brotherhood – lives on.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali
The Christian Science Monitor
Like thousands across the world, I celebrated the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden. He rejoiced in killing. But bin Laden’s murder is not the end of Al Qaeda. And even if Al Qaeda were totally eliminated, the world would still have to deal with Al Qaeda’s progenitor.
Bin Laden was many things, but he was not original. He was himself introduced to the doctrine of jihad by the late Palestinian theologian Abdullah Yusuf Azzam. Significantly, before Azzam begun teaching bin Laden and others in Saudi Arabia, he was a member of the Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood.
Unlike Al Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood has evolved and learned the hard way that the use of violence will be met with superior violence by state actors. The clever thing to do, it now turns out, was to be patient and invest in a bottom-up movement rather than a commando structure that risked being wiped out by stronger forces. Besides, the gradualist approach is far more likely to win the prize of state power. All that Khomeini did before he came to power in Iran was to preach the merits of a society based on Islamic law. He did not engage in terrorism. Yet he and his followers took over Iran – a feat far greater than bin Laden ever achieved. In Iran the violence came later.
The article continues at The Christian Science Monitor.
H/T Weasel Zippers
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