Congressional efforts are currently underway to officially name the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization.
The bill is known as the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act of 2014, and was created by Representative Michelle Bachmann. The bill seeks to assign some heavy sanctions to the organization, and any groups that support the organization both in American and in Europe. The bill has received support from several cosponsors.
Many believe that the bill is overdue. The Muslim Brotherhood, a new political party in the US, has long been deemed a “terrorist group” but this bill would prove that the Muslim Brotherhood has played an integral role in planning and carrying out terrorist attacks. It also seeks to prevent anyone with affiliation to the Brotherhood to be denied a visa in the US.
What do you think? Do you support this legislation?
Text of the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act of 2014
This bill was assigned to a congressional committee on July 24, 2014, which will consider it before possibly sending it on to the House or Senate as a whole. The text of the bill below is as of Jul 24, 2014 (Introduced).
H. R. 5194
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 24, 2014
Mrs. Bachmann (for herself, Mr. Roskam, Mr. Franks of Arizona, Mrs. Lummis, Mr. Brady of Texas, Mr. Southerland, Mr. Gohmert, and Mr. LaMalfa) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committees on Foreign Affairs and Financial Services, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned
To impose sanctions against persons who knowingly provide material support or resources to the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act of 2014.
Sense of Congress on designation of the Muslim brotherhood as a foreign terrorist organization
Congress finds the following:
The Muslim Brotherhood, Hizb al-Ikhwan al-Muslimin, was founded in Egypt in 1928 by Hassan al-Banna. The organization remains headquartered in Egypt but operates throughout the world. The Muslim Brotherhood’s motto remains to this day what it has been for decades:
Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Koran is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope. Allahu-Akbar! [Allah is greater!].
Hassan al-Banna, in a book he called
Jihad, instructed members:
Jihad is an obligation from Allah on every Muslim and cannot be ignored nor [sic] evaded. Allah has ascribed great importance to jihad and has made the reward of the martyrs and fighters in His way a splendid one. Only those who have acted similarly and who have modeled themselves upon the martyrs in their performance of jihad can join them in this reward..
Hassan al-Banna added that
fighting the unbelievers involves all possible efforts that are necessary to dismantle the power of the enemies of Islam including beating them, plundering their wealth, destroying their places of worship, and smashing their idols.
Hassan al-Banna also taught that
it is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, and thus that the mission of Islam, as interpreted and executed by the Muslim Brotherhood, must be
to impose its [i.e., Islam’s] law on nations and to extend its power to the entire planet. While al-Banna’s plan for accomplishing this mission was multifaceted, it centrally incorporated training for and the execution of violent jihad—terrorist operations.
In the seminal 1969 book on the history of the Muslim Brotherhood,
The Society of Muslim Brothers, University of Michigan Professor Richard P. Mitchell explained al-Banna’s teachings on violent jihad: The certainty that jihad had this physical connotation is evidenced by the relationship always implied between it and the possibility, even the necessity, of death and martyrdom. Death, as an important end of jihad, was extolled by al-Banna in a phrase which came to be a famous part of his legacy:
[T]he art of death.
Death is art. The Koran has commanded people to love death more than life. Unless
the philosophy of the Koran on death replaces
the love of life which has consumed Muslims, then they will reach naught. Victory can only come with the mastery of
the art of death. The movement cannot succeed, al-Banna insists, without this dedicated and unqualified kind of jihad.
This philosophy pervaded the Muslim Brotherhood’s prioritization of training for combat. Professor Mitchell observed that it was
the tone of the training which gave the Society [i.e., the Muslim Brotherhood] its distinctive qualities, adding: If the Muslim Brothers were more effectively violent than other groups on the Egyptian scene, it was because militancy and martyrdom had been elevated to central virtues in the Society’s ethos. Its literature and speeches were permeated with references identifying it and its purposes in military terms. Al-Banna told members again and again that they were
the army of liberation, carrying on your shoulders the message of liberation; you are the battalions of salvation for this nation afflicted by calamity.
Al-Banna’s blueprint for revolution anticipated a final stage of
execution at which point the
battalions the Muslim Brotherhood had trained would
conquer … every obstinate tyrant. This violent ideology continued to be part of the Brotherhood’s indoctrination in standard membership texts, such as Sayyid Qutb’s
Milestones and Fathi Yakan’s
To Be a Muslim.
In Muslim Brotherhood organizations and chapters throughout the world, including in the United States, al-Banna’s originating philosophy continues to be taught.
In its earliest days, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood established a terrorist wing (the
secret apparatus) that conducted bombings and assassinations targeting foreigners and government officials. The assassinations by the Muslim Brotherhood of Judge Ahmed Al-Khazinder Bey in 1947 and Prime Minister Mahmoud Al-Nuqrashi in 1948 prompted the first ban on the organization in Egypt.
The United States has previously designated global elements of the Muslim Brotherhood. The terrorist group Hamas, which self-identifies as
one of the wings of the Muslim Brotherhood in Palestine, was designated as a foreign terrorist organization by President William J. Clinton on January 23, 1995, by Executive Order 12947, and later under section 219(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189(a)) by Secretary of State Madeline Albright on October 7, 1997.
The Kuwaiti Muslim Brotherhood’s Lajnat al-Daawa al-Islamiya (
Islamic Call Committee) was designated as a foreign terrorist organization by President George W. Bush on September 23, 2001, by Executive Order 13224 and later under section 219(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189(a)) by Secretary of State Colin Powell on January 9, 2003. Reasons cited for the designation included Lajnat al-Daawa al-Islamiya being used as a financial conduit for Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda, and its funding of terrorist groups in Chechnya and Libya. Both Al-Qaeda operations chief Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and World Trade Center bomber Ramzi Yousef held positions with the organization.
Individual Muslim Brotherhood leaders have also been designated on the list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists, as established under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) and initiated under Executive Order 13224 (September 23, 2001), by the United States. On February 2, 2004, the Department of the Treasury designated Shaykh Abd-al-Majid Al-Zindani, a leader of the Yemeni Muslim Brotherhood’s Al-Islah political party. The designation states that al-Zindani has a
long history of working with Bin Laden, serving as one of his spiritual leaders, in addition to his activities in support of Al-Qaeda, including recruiting and procuring weapons. Al-Zindani was also identified in a Federal lawsuit as a coordinator of the October 2000 suicide attack targeting the U.S.S. Cole in Aden, Yemen, that killed 17 United States Navy sailors, including personally selecting the two suicide bombers. In September 2012, al-Zindani reportedly called for his supporters to kill United States Marines stationed at the United States Embassy in Sana’a, Yemen.
Mohammad Jamal Khalifa, a veteran of the Soviet-Afghan war, senior Muslim Brotherhood leader, and brother-in-law and close confidant of Osama bin Laden was arrested in California in December 1994 on charges related to the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. Evidence was found at that time that linked Khalifa to the planned Al-Qaeda Operation Bojinka plot that included the bombing of 11 airplanes between Asia and the United States. He was deported to Jordan in May 1995. Prior to that time he operated an Islamic charity in the Philippines that was accused of funneling money to the Abu Sayyef terrorist group and laundering money for Bin Laden. He was sought again by United States authorities in 2007, and an Interpol bulletin was issued to several United States intelligence agencies. Khalifa was killed four days later in Madagascar.
Sami Al-Hajj, an Al-Qaeda member and senior leader of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Shura Council, was imprisoned as a detainee at the Department of Defense facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He was captured by Pakistani forces near the Afghanistan border in 2001 and transferred to United States custody. He was detained for his work as a money and weapons courier for Al-Qaeda. He reportedly worked directly with Taliban commander Mullah Mohammad Omar to procure weapons, and met with senior Afghan Muslim Brotherhood officials in mid-2001 to discuss the transfer of Stinger missiles from Afghanistan to Chechnya.
According to a May 1995 report by the United States House of Representatives Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare, a series of conferences hosted by Sudanese Muslim Brotherhood leader Hassan al-Turabi in Khartoum, Sudan during October 1994 and March to April 1995 featured representatives from virtually every Islamic terrorist organization in the world. The conferences included representatives from Iranian intelligence, Hezbollah, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the Algerian AIS and GIA, as well as leaders from the international Muslim Brotherhood, the Muslim Brotherhood in the Gulf Countries, Hamas (the Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood), the Islamic Action Front (Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood), and Ennahdha (the Tunisian Muslim Brotherhood). Osama bin Laden was present at the conferences. The parties agreed to launch a terrorism offensive beginning in 1995, with targets including United States interests and personnel in the Middle East and attacks inside the United States homeland.
In December 2002 a multiple vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) suicide attack targeting a four-story building in Grozny killed 57 people. Russian counterterrorism officials claimed the attack was ordered and coordinated by Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev and Abu Walid, an official with the Muslim Brotherhood. They further claimed that days before the bombing the pair met near Grozny to plan this and other attacks. Russian officials also identified the international Muslim Brotherhood network as financing the Chechen rebels. In 2003, the Russian Supreme Court banned the Muslim Brotherhood, describing it as a terrorist organization.
Before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate in October 2003, Richard Clarke, former National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism for Presidents William J. Clinton and George W. Bush, testified to the extent that terrorist organizations continued to operate inside the United States and the connection to the Muslim Brotherhood networks:
Dating back to the 1980’s, Islamist terrorist networks have developed a sophisticated and diversified financial infrastructure in the United States. In the post September 11th environment, it is now widely known that every major Islamist terrorist organization, from Hamas to Islamic Jihad to Al Qida, has leveraged the financial resources and institutions of the United States to build their capabilities. We face a highly developed enemy in our mission to stop terrorist financing. While the overseas operations of Islamist terrorist organizations are generally segregated and distinct, the opposite holds in the United States. The issue of terrorist financing in the United States is a fundamental example of the shared infrastructure levered by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Al Qida, all of which enjoy a significant degree of cooperation and coordination within our borders. The common link here is the extremist Muslim Brotherhood—all of these organizations are descendants of the membership and ideology of the Muslim Brothers..
One of the examples cited by Richard Clarke in his testimony before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate was the case of Soliman Biheiri, who ran an investment firm specializing in Islamically-permissible investments, the Secaucus, New Jersey-based BMI Incorporated. BMI Incorporated offered a range of financial services for the Muslim community, and invested in businesses and real estate. According to Federal prosecutors, among the shareholders of BMI Incorporated were Al-Qaeda financier Yassin Al-Qadi and top Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzook—two Specially Designated Global Terrorists. Both Qadi and Marzook operated separate businesses out of the offices of BMI Incorporated that also did business with BMI Incorporated. Other BMI Incorporated investors included Abdullah bin Laden, nephew of Osama bin laden, and Tarek Swaidan, a Kuwaiti Muslim Brotherhood leader. In a September 2003 detention hearing, Federal prosecutors described Biheiri as
the U.S. banker for the Muslim Brotherhood, and stating that
the defendant came here as the Muslim Brotherhood’s financial toehold in the U.S.. Biheiri was convicted on Federal immigration charges on October 9, 2003.
The fact that the international Muslim Brotherhood engages in terrorism financing inside the United States was attested to by then-FBI Director Robert Mueller, who testified before the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives in February 2011, and responded to a question about the Muslim Brotherhood’s networks and agenda in the United States:
I can say at the outset that elements of the Muslim Brotherhood both here and overseas have supported terrorism. To the extent that I can provide information, I would be happy to do so in closed session. But it would be difficult to do in open session..
In the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) prosecutions—the largest terrorism financing trial in United States history—Department of Justice officials successfully argued in court that the international Muslim Brotherhood and its United States affiliates had engaged in a wide-spread conspiracy to raise money and materially support the terrorist group Hamas. HLF officials charged in the case were found guilty on all counts in November 2008, primarily related to millions of dollars that had been transferred to Hamas. During the trial and in court documents, Federal prosecutors implicated a number of prominent United States-Islamic organizations in this conspiracy, including the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT), and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). These groups and their leaders, among others, were named as unindicted co-conspirators in the case. The Department of Justice told the court that these United States-Muslim Brotherhood affiliates acted at the direction of the international Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorism in a July 2008 court filing:
ISNA and NAIT, in fact, shared more with HLF than just a parent organization. They were intimately connected with the HLF and its assigned task of providing financial support to HAMAS. Shortly after HAMAS was founded in 1987, as an outgrowth of the Muslim Brotherhood, Govt. Exh. 21-61, the International Muslim Brotherhood ordered the Muslim Brotherhood chapters throughout the world to create Palestine Committees, whose job it was to support HAMAS with .
media, money and men. Govt. Exh. 3-15. The U.S.-Muslim Brotherhood created the U.S. Palestine Committee, which document reflect was initially comprised of three organizations: the OLF (HLF), the IAP, and the UASR. CAIR was later added to these organizations. Govt. Exh. 3-78 (listing IAP, HLF, UASR and CAIR as part of the Palestine Committee, and stating that there is
[n]o doubt America is the ideal location to train the necessary resources to support the Movement worldwide…). The mandate of these organizations, per the International Muslim Brotherhood, was to support HAMAS, and the HLF’s particular role was to raise money to support HAMAS’ organizations inside the Palestinian territories. Govt. Exh. 3-17 (objective of the Palestine Committee is to support HAMAS).
In September 2010 the Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mohamed Badie, delivered a weekly sermon mirroring the ideological themes of Al-Qaeda’s August 1996 declaration of war against the United States. Calling on Arab and Muslim regimes to confront not just Israel, but also the United States, he declared that
Resistance is the only solution against the Zio-American arrogance and tyranny. This
resistance can only come from fighting and understanding
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 also predicted the imminent downfall of the United States, saying
The U.S. is now experiencing the beginning of its end, and is heading towards its demise..
The August 14, 2013, clearing of Muslim Brotherhood protests in Egypt resulted in attacks by Muslim Brotherhood supporters targeting the Coptic Christian community. Attacks included 70 churches and more than 1,000 homes and businesses of Coptic Christian families torched in the ensuing violence. During the Muslim Brotherhood protests, there were repeated reports of direct incitement towards the Copts from leading Muslim Brotherhood figures, and since the protest dispersal this targeting of the Christian community continues in official statements on Muslim Brotherhood social media outlets and from its leadership. As the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has previously noted, this terror campaign by the Muslim Brotherhood is not a new development. Over the past decade violence by the Muslim Brotherhood has been directed at the Coptic community. As the USCIRF observed in its 2003 Annual Report:
Coptic Christians face ongoing violence from vigilante Muslim extremists, including members of the Muslim Brotherhood, many of whom act with impunity..
Section 219(a)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189(a)(1)) provides the 3 criteria for the designation of an organization as a Foreign Terrorist Organization:
The organization must be a foreign organization.
The organization must engage in terrorist activity, as defined in section 212(a)(3)(B) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(3)(B)), or terrorism, as defined in section 140(d)(2) of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1988 and 1989 (22 U.S.C. 2656f(d)(2)), or retain the capability and intent to engage in terrorist activity or terrorism.
The organization’s terrorist activity or terrorism must threaten the security of United States nationals or the national security (national defense, foreign relations, or the economic interests) of the United States.
Sense of congress
It is the sense of Congress that—
The Muslim Brotherhood has met the criteria for designation as a foreign terrorist organization under section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (as described in subsection (b)); and
the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Treasury, should exercise the Secretary of State’s statutory authority and designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a foreign terrorist organization.
If the Secretary of State does not designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a foreign terrorist organization under section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act within 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State shall submit to Congress a report that contains the reasons therefor.
Sanctions against persons who knowingly provide material support or resources to the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents
The President shall subject to all available sanctions any person in the United States or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who knowingly provides material support or resources to the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents.
In this paragraph, the term
material support or resources has the meaning given such term in section 2339A(b)(1) of title 18, United States Code.
Inadmissibility and removal
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary of State may not issue any visa to, and the Secretary of Homeland Security shall deny entry to the United States of, any member or representative of the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents.
Any alien who is a member or representative of the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents may be removed from the United States in the same manner as an alien who is inadmissible under sections 212(a)(3)(B)(i)(IV) or (V).
Any United States financial institution (as defined under section 5312 of title 31, United States Code) that knowingly has possession of or control over funds in which the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents have an interest shall retain possession of or control over the funds and report the funds to the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Department of the Treasury.