Even Saudi Arabia has identified the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. That doesn’t stop the Obama administration from continuing to engage the group around the world. Brotherhood front groups in the U.S. have never been more powerful or brazen and Egypt’s branch continues to remain in good standing with the U.S. State Department.
QUESTION: …The State Department has recently said that it is in constant contact with the Muslim Brotherhood, as with the other political groups, you see?
MS. HARF: Mm-hmm, yes.
QUESTION: So do you think that these contacts have any effect on the United States relations with Egypt? And are these just mere contacts or support? Because this is very important for the Egyptian public opinion. Thanks.
MS. HARF: Well, they’re contacts, and let’s just – I’ll put it in a little context here. We think it’s important to have contacts with all the parties in Egypt, because all the parties in Egypt ultimately are going to need to be a part of Egypt’s future, and that we want to help them be a part of that future and move Egypt out of the situation it’s in today. So we think this is important to do. Do we always agree, do they always agree with what we’re saying? Of course not. But we believe it’s important to have the dialogue.
We don’t support one party or one group or one person. So when we’re talking about elections, when – I know there’s a lot of conspiracy theories about us supporting the Muslim Brotherhood or supporting the military or – there’s a lot. They can’t all be true, right? Because they’re mutually exclusive. But we don’t support one group. We support the process. We support the people of Egypt who make up these parties – right – as they are trying to determine how to get Egypt back on a better path.
So we speak very clearly to dispel some of those rumors because I agree that on the ground, those rumors aren’t helpful, and sometimes they hurt our efforts, which is why we have to speak very clearly and say we don’t take sides here in Egypt’s future.
The reporter missed a golden opportunity to follow-up on Harf’s claim about “conspiracy theories” by asking if it’s true that the new Egyptian government is seriously looking into charges involving extensive Muslim Brotherhood connections of President Obama’s brother, Malik Obama.
Of course, the Saudis have funded the Brotherhood around the globe for years and now their chickens are coming home to roost, so by identifying the group as a terrorist organization, dialogue with the Brotherhood is likely not at the top of the priority list. Conversely, when the State Department touts dialogue with a terrorist organization with front groups all across the U.S., it speaks volumes.
These front groups are funded largely by the Saudis and based on the soured relations between the Obama administration over the Iran / Syria situations, it wouldn’t be surprising if that funding doesn’t dry up, despite the terrorist designation.