Sound familiar? This is precisely what is happening today in Egypt, where the one unifying goal of the revolution was the overthrow of the Mubarak regime; where many Egyptians are secularist, liberal, Christian, etc., and certainly do not want an Islamic government; and where the Islamists, like the Muslim Brotherhood, are busy reassuring everyone that all their freedoms will be preserved.
Based on the Iranian model, and the ongoing “Arab Spring,” two lessons emerge as to how Islamists manage to consolidate power: 1) through outright lies and false promises, justified through Islamic doctrines like taqiyya and tawriya; and 2) through gradual implementation. This is how the mullahs achieved power in Iran, and this is how the Muslim Brotherhood—which is on record saying that its gradual, long-term goal is “mastership of the world”—is working to achieve power in Egypt, seen as the first domino on the road to caliphate.
Indeed, speaking of gradualism, here is a telling anecdote from Egypt: back in 1953, when the Muslim Brotherhood’s leader asked President Gamel Abdel Nasser to enforce the hijab on women—in 1953 hardly any Egyptian women wore it—his suggestion was met with laughter and ridicule. Half a century later, the hijab is commonplace in Egypt.
Thus history prepares to repeat itself, even as the world prepares to act surprised—all in accord with that age-old adage, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” One may forgive those Iranians and others who fell for the lies of the Islamists during the 1979 revolution: there were no similar large scale precedents to warn them, certainly not from the modern era; the world was just beginning to confront political Islam.
Today, however, as Islamists exploit democracy to empower Sharia—and after more than three decades’ worth of Islamist lies, betrayals, and broken promises, all justified by Islamic doctrines—for anyone to still take them at their word, well, that is a big “shame on you.”
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