Resistance no longer united
The language of these groups demonstrates their close connection to the Brotherhood and their relative distance from other purely jihadist groups. The activity of the People′s Committees declined when the Hassm organisation became predominant. Hassm has shown themselves more dedicated to a Pan-Islamist position, with their leadership sending congratulatory messages to the mujahidin following the conquest of Aleppo in Syria and blessing the emergence of the new militant Egyptian group Li′wa el Thawra – the Revolution Brigade – with a message celebrating ″the onset of the movement,″ which the group considered ″an addition to the ranks of the blessed resistance.″
On 21 August of last year, a policeman and a soldier were killed. The Li′wa el Thawra movement claimed the attacks in a public letter which stated, ″This operation comes in response to the massacres of this criminal government, massacres that we live in the memory these days, in the Adawiyya Rabaa and Al Nahda,″ demonstrating a clear link between the group and the Brotherhood.
Two months later, Li′wa el Thawra claimed the execution of a major general in Cairo, Adil Rijai, in order to avenge the killing of a senior Muslim Brotherhood leader, Mohammad Kamal. In January 2015 the site Ikhwanonline – controlled by the extremist wing of the Egyptian youth referred to as the Front Mohammad Kamal or Front of Mohammad Montasser – posted an article openly discussing a return to jihad (holy war): ″the Imam al-Banna prepared the brigades of jihad, and sent them to Palestine to kill the Zionist usurpers, and the second guide [Supreme] Hassan al-Hudaybi rebuilt the secret organisation to shed the blood of the British occupiers.″
The new call to jihad from the Brotherhood came after current Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi increased repressive measures against the group, jailing many of its supporters. The most radical strains and discourses have found space for their messaging in new online TV platforms established in Turkey after 2013.
An eye for an eye
Partly controlled by the Ulema in Turkey, these programmes include two of the most radical lines, Mukammiliin (We go on) and Al Sharq (the East). After National Security forces assassinated Mohammad Kamal, a leader of the Brotherhood, the influential Ulemas Essam al Talima and Mohammad al Saghir – both reference scholars of the Brotherhood, the latter a former member of the Parliament – commented on "the martyrdom" of the Islamist leader in Al Sharq and Al Jazeera and demonstrated their approval of the qisas, vengeance killings based on the principle of ″an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.″
Their statements leave no doubt that the slogan of the old leadership, salmiyyetna aqwa men al Rusas (our pacifism is more powerful than bullets), and its related political practices are now in deep crisis. The belief in nonviolence was challenged over time by a young population increasingly radicalised by state-sponsored repression.
While the prevailing attitude of the Muslim Brotherhood seemed to allow for limited violence rather than total violence that would lead to a situation like the one in Syria, the aftermath of the party′s dissolution led to great diversification in the opinions of its younger followers.
The rhetoric of Egypt′s Islamic activists compares the sufferings of today′s Muslims to those in the era of Nasser. More and more young people are becoming inspired by Sayyid Qutb, the father of contemporary jihadism executed by the Nasser regime. Currently, any ideological progression is limited by the leadership′s blind repressive tactics, all while Egypt sinks further and further into a sea of violence.
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