Politics & Policy

Obama and the Muslim Brotherhood vs. the Copts

Church of the Virgin in Waraq
U.S. policy toward Egypt favors their enemy.

Who is more deserving of punishment by the United States? Millions of Egyptians, for ousting the Muslim Brotherhood? Or the Muslim Brotherhood, for crimes that include the habitual terrorizing and murder of Christians?

It is the millions of anti-Brotherhood Egyptians who are in the wrong — or at least, that’s what actions taken by the Obama administration imply.

Last Sunday, the Church of the Virgin (Mary) in Waraq, near Cairo, was attacked during a wedding ceremony. Four were killed, and many wounded. According to forensic evidence analyzed by Hisham Abdul Hamid, two of those murdered were Christian girls, two Marys — twelve-year-old Mary Nabil Fahmy, who took five shots in the chest, and eight-year-old Mary Ashraf Masih (her last name means “Christ”), who was shot in the back with a bullet that burst through the front of her body.

Back in July, another Christian girl, ten-year-old Jessi Boulos, was shot dead while walking home from Bible class.

Coptic churches attacked, and Christians murdered, particularly on holy days and during celebrations — the scene has become a normal feature of Egypt’s social and political landscape. It is in large measure the result of the Muslim Brotherhood’s incitements against Egypt’s Christians as it reacted to the June 30 Revolution, in which the Brotherhood was ousted from government.

#ad#Needing someone to scapegoat in their drive to set Egypt ablaze, Brotherhood leadership — including supreme leader Mohammed Badie, Safwat Hegazi, and Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi — repeatedly demonized the nation’s Christian minority, leading to atrocities committed against the Copts.

A headline earlier this week from Tahrir News, one of Egypt’s leading newspapers, tells the story: “The Brotherhood’s crime in Waraq: Seventeen murdered Copts and 85 torched churches since ousting of Morsi . . . Copts pay price of June 30 Revolution.”

Now consider the response of the United States to the conflict between Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood. It has ignored the plight of Egypt’s Christians or, when attacks have been especially egregious (and exposed by the mainstream media), offered perfunctory condemnation. Since the administration got away with this lip-service approach when Americans were killed — condemning the attack on the American embassy in Benghazi, promising to find and bring to justice those who were responsible, and then ignoring the whole affair — surely it wouldn’t hesitate to take the same approach with a foreign nation.

For years, human-rights activists have been imploring the Obama administration to make foreign aid to Egypt contingent on the government’s respect for the human rights of all Egyptians, including Christian minorities. Such a move would dramatically ameliorate the plight of the Copts, since most Egyptians, including most members of the Muslim Brotherhood, are more motivated by money than by the prospect of killing Christians. The Obama administration has been idle in responding to this policy recommendation.

On the other hand, when those who are responsible for the destruction of nearly 100 Christian churches (including an unprecedented attack on the holiest Coptic church, while Morsi was still president) and the murders of Copts and their children finally get ejected by the Egyptian people and their military, then the Obama administration takes action, as it did recently, cutting hundreds of millions in aid to Egypt in response to the ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood.

What more proof does any sensible American need to conclude that the president of the United States is firmly on the side of a group of Islamic terrorists?

Raymond Ibrahim is the author of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians and The Al Qaeda Reader.

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