Thursday, February 9, 2012

Arab Liberals Lament: Here's How the Muslim Brotherhood is Fooling the West

By Barry Rubin

Since we can’t get good coverage of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in the Western media it’s necessary to turn to the Islamists’ intended victims--Arab liberals—to get a better picture.

NowLebanon explains it all to you in an article on what it calls the “media blitz” of the Muslim Brotherhood and its politicians in the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP). It writes:

“Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood has been displaying great skill in handling the media over the past year. Since the revolution last January and the party’s electoral success in the recent round of polls in the country, the Brotherhood’s media outlets have tirelessly tried to project an image of moderation. But many secularists and leftists remain suspicious.”

The problem is that it has had the full cooperation of the Western media and governments in selling itself as moderate. Here are the NowLebanon talking points:

--“`The Brotherhood is very savvy and clever when it comes to the media, and they know their audience very well. They certainly have very good media advisors,’ says Khaled Fahmy, professor of History at the American University in Cairo.”

--“The Brotherhood has set up a TV channel and a newspaper, and both it and the FJP have been keeping daily-updated websites in English and Arabic.

--Their Twitter page, Ikhwanweb, has almost 8,500 followers. The managers of the account regularly engage their followers in lively discussions, and the Brotherhood's party is the only one in Egypt that has its own smartphone App.

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