Is President Obama a secret member of the Muslim Brotherhood? “That would explain a lot” his detractors might say. “What would that explain?” you might shoot back. Umm…
Let’s go back to the start of the latest “Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim” nonspiracy. A few days ago, Shadi Hamid, the Director of Research at the Brookings Doha Center, posted a couple of pictures of a local Egyptian paper on Twitter.
Said paper claims that President Obama is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, and further, the paper says it has proof.
“If you missed it, ‘liberal’ Egyptian newspaper has front page headline claiming Obama as full-on member of Muslim Brotherhood international,” Hamid wrote.
“Newspaper also claims that son of MB leader threatened Obama with release of ‘papers’ revealing his MB membership,” he continued.
The paper also alleges that President Obama’s half-brother Malik is an al Qaeda activist.
So far, the story is being ignored by the mainstream media. Al Jazeera included it as a footnote in their blog, and a handful of smaller sites have picked it up.
But even right-leaning blogs, of which this kind of story is often both the bread and the butter, seem to openly doubt the dubious claims.
Jonathan Spyer, senior research fellow at the Global Research in International Affairs Center and an Arabic speaker, told The Blaze that the Egyptian populace are frustrated with President Obama and his policies, which they see as pro-Muslim Brotherhood.
President Obama was supportive of the democratically-elected Mohamed Morsi, himself a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but distanced himself from the Egyptian president after he started leaning toward the despotic.
“There is some degree of justification in their accusations,” Spyer said. But…
“There is also a large degree of paranoid anti-American and anti-western sentiment in Egypt. As a result, the anger against the Administration has rapidly and predictably turned into conspiracy theories according to which Obama’s admittedly astonishingly naive and misguided attitude toward the Muslim Brotherhood can in fact be explained by the claim that he is a secret member of it.”
Eric Trager, an Egypt scholar at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy added: “This sort of conspiracy theorizing is sadly common within the Egyptian media. It reflects Egyptians’ inability to take responsibility for the choices that they’ve made in the past few years – specifically, their choice to elect the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate in the June 2012 presidential election.”
Trager also regards the conspiracy theory that President Obama is somehow a Muslim Brotherhood member as a sign of “fascistic tendencies” that are “hardening in Egyptian politics.”
He adds, “fascists always need an external enemy to justify their support for, or execution of, repressive policies.”
“Newspapers have run more and more bizarre and farcical stories over the last few months, but this one indeed seems to be the oddest story to have yet been printed,” writes MEMO, a Middle East media bias watchdog.
But even if you have no respect for expert opinion and analysis, several respected and nonpartisan fact-checkers (yeah, we know WaPo doesn’t count) have taken down the “Barack Obama is a Muslim” nonspiracy time and time again over the years, with a bunch of actual facts and evidence (where nonspiracists have a marked lack thereof).
There are pictures of President Obama eating hot dogs during Ramadan, for pete’s sake.
Additionally, many otherwise harsh critics of President Obama don’t take stock in the Muslim rumor at all. Conservative firebrand Ann Coulter thinks it’s absolutely ridiculous, and believes that he’s probably an Atheist based on her own observations.
Oh, and then Muslims actually hate him. There’s that.
So if President Obama is a Muslim Brotherhood gold member, he’s a bad one. Can’t he just be a bad president, especially with regard to international policy, instead?