The man in the video above, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, has been described as the spiritual leader of the "peace-loving" Muslim Brotherhood. On Friday, al-Qaradawi returned to Cairo after 50 years away, to tell the millions in Tahrir Sq "Don't fight history...You can't delay the day when it starts...The Arab world has changed." Muslim Brotherhood beepers have gone off worldwide: Egypt is leaderless, and its people are hungry for a new identity, revenge on forces that have kept it back, and power and position on the world stage. Not to mention, a state-of-the-art military straight from the U. S. of A. is desperately seeking new ownership. (But let's keep this quiet while US aid continues to stream in, k?)
Al-Qaradawi, a native of Egypt, has spent the last half-century in Qatar, where he is known for his hit Al Jazeera show "Shariah and Life". Al-Qaradawi is banned from the US (by Bill Clinton) and from Britain for supporting terrorist attacks in Iraq and Israel. In 2003, al-Qaradawi (y"s) told the BBC that he considered Palestinian suicide attacks evidence of God's justice. During his remarks at the Stockholm Mosque in Sweden, he called the fight against Israel a "necessary Jihad". In 2003, he issued a fatwa authorizing the use of women in suicide attacks. He is also the "spiritual advisor" for Hamas.
According to INN, prior to the ban, al-Qaradawi served as trustee of the Boston Mosque, which during his time featured teachings on its website on how to beat one's wife. Today, Al-Qaradawi is a trustee of the Oxford University Center for Islamic studies, and is chairman of the Board of Trustees of Islamic American Univesrity, a subsidiary of the Muslim American Society, the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America. Al-Qaradawi also heads the most influential fatwa in Europe, the European Council for Fatwa and Research.
The Western public prefers to stare googley-eyed at pictures of Arab Google Executives, supposed poster children of the Egyptian revolution, rather than stop to wonder why Tahrir Square is a place where the spiritual underpinnings of suicide bombings are enthusiastically cheered, where a female reporter was sexually abused by a 200-person mob, and where 2 million people on Friday chanted for the liberation of Jerusalem by martyrdom.
What would signify al-Qaradawi's influence in coming months? Here are his demands: 1) Free political prisoners (i.e. Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas terrorists, so they can be free to resume Jew-killing), 2) Dissolve the cabinet and transfer authority to a civilian government (which the Muslim Brotherhood will inevitably rule/influence and then rule), 3) and here's the key: Open Egypt's border crossing with Gaza (to feed Hamas with Egyptian military aid in its struggle against Israel, i.e. all the missiles too big to fit into the underground smuggling tuunels).
The Egypt-Gaza border had been closed since Hamas, which Mubarak opposed, had taken force of Gaza in 2007. After the flotilla incident in May 2010, when Turkish activists ambushed an IDF, leading to the death of nine Turks, Mubarak began to ease the border under international pressure. After al-Qaradawi's remarks, and weeks of Hamas-Muslim Brotherhood behind-the-scenes pressure, the announcement came: On Tuesday, Egypt is opening the Gaza border in both directions, daily.
UPDATE (INN): Egyptian state television reported on Sunday that Egypt has released 108 political prisoners on the order of Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik, and that 222 prisoners would be released soon.
אין לנו על מי להישען אלא על אבינו בשמים . . .