A new translation of a former Muslim Brotherhood leader's book shows a strong commitment to jihad not only in defense, but in "realizing the great task of establishing an Islamic state and strengthening the religion and spreading it around the world."
His ideology "contrasts sharply with the Egyptian MB's recent positions on violence, Islam's role in politics, and aspirations to political power in Egypt and abroad.
"We do not have a special agenda; we follow the trends and have often repeated that we are not seeking power or position, and will not nominate anyone to run for the presidency," said a Brotherhood statement on Feb. 7. Jihad is the way presents a different view of violently seizing power and establishing an Islamic state, which is seen by the MB as a religious obligation. "Additionally, without Jihad and the preparation towards it, the obligation cast upon every Muslim to establish an Islamic state and the Islamic Caliphate and to consolidate this religion, will not be realized," Mashhur wrote.
The book also reinforces concerns about the MB nullifying Egypt's peace treaty with Israel and destabilizing the region. "Jihad for Allah is not limited to the specific region of the Islamic countries, since the Muslim homeland is one and is not divided, and the banner of Jihad has already been raised in some of its parts, and it shall continue to be raised, with the help of Allah, until every inch of the land of Islam will be liberated, the State of Islam will be established," Mashhur wrote. "And the youth should know that the problems of the Islamic world, such as Palestine, Afghanistan, Syria, Eritrea, or the Philippines, are not issues of territories and nations, but of faith and religion. They are problems of Islam and all Muslims, and their resolution cannot be negotiated and bargained by recognizing the enemy's right to the Islamic land he stole, therefore, there is no other option but Jihad for Allah, and this is why Jihad is the way."
The book fits more with other ideological and strategic texts of the MB, as opposed to recent and more pragmatic statements. The strategy of the American Muslim Brotherhood, as laid out by documents in the Hamas-support trial of the Holy Land Foundation, shows an organization committed to using civil society and state institutions to secure a renewed Caliphate. To topple secular government in America, the MB advocates "establishing an effective and stable Islamic Movement led by the Muslim Brotherhood which adopts Muslims' causes domestically and globally, and which works to expand the observant Muslim base, aims at unifying and directing Muslims' efforts, presents Islam as a civilization alternative, and supports the global Islamic state, wherever it is."