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  • 1. MODERN SCIENCE & ARTS UNIVERSITY Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Media Ethics Submitted by: Nehal Hesham Fall 2010
  • 2. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Table of Contents Introduction_________________________________ PG 3 Literature Review____________________________ PG 4-6 Abstract____________________________________ PG 7-8 Al-Ikhwan Contributions_______________________ PG 9-12 The Stereotyping_____________________________ PG 13-14 Linking the Constitution_______________________ PG 15-17 Linking the Potter Box_________________________ PG 18-19 Appendix___________________________________ PG 20-22 References__________________________________ PG 23 Page 2 of 23
  • 3. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Introduction Since the emerging of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1928, by Imam Hassan El-Banna, it has been opposed aggressively by the government and lately by the media. Although Imam Hassan EL- Banna was the first to know the high potential of the media, but the government owned media was always against him. In the past 30 years the media spread their wings and started to hardly hit the Muslim Brotherhood, then it was transformed from government owned media to a more so called free but yet government controlled media. Muslim brotherhood or in other words Al-Ikhwan are being tremendously stereotyped starting from the late 70’s till now. A huge misunderstanding has been imposed by the media, which is the confusion between Al-Ikhwan and Al-Gamaa Al-Islamaya. Al-Gamaa el Islamaya is a group of extremist that have been emerging in the late 70’s and early 80’s, they are what media have been calling terrorists, they are a group of people that was imprisoned during Nasser’s & Sadat’s Era. In this research I will discuss the stereotyping of the Ikhwan and the confusion between Al- Ikhwan & El Gamaa El-Islamaya. I believe that the Muslim brotherhood is more of an ideology rather than an act, and no one can be punished for an ideology and for an act supporting Islam. I believe that the government is threatened by the Ikhwan that is why it is opposing them and stereotyping them in the media. Page 3 of 23
  • 4. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Literature Review As discussed in our introduction, we will discuss the stereotypes of the Muslim Brotherhood in Arab Media, due to that we created our literature review. The literature is going to examine past researches that has been made on stereotypes of Muslim brotherhood in the Arab World and Worldwide. The literature review is going to analyze previous viewpoints and perspectives of other scholars. Also the role of the Egyptian government and its control; of media and Muslim Brotherhood in particular will be examined. The following is article written by Pricilia Martinez Discussing the Muslim Culture and religion Misrepresented by media. Martinez Started her argument by quoting a verse from the Quran that says “God does no forbid you to treat kindly and act equitably toward those who neither fought you in the matter of religion nor driven you out of your home. Indeed, God loves the just. (Quran 60:8) Antagonism toward Islam has been a permanent fixture in Europe since the time of the Crusades. The media have been primary contributors to an erroneous image of Islam by stereotyping all Muslims as being fundamentalists or terrorists. (Martinez, 2002) For example; after the bombing of the World Trade Center, the media depicted American Muslims in general as the cause of disaster. With circumstantial evidence, the media accused, indicted, tried, and found the alleged fundamentalists, thus all American Muslims, guilty. The "fundamental" beliefs of a Muslim are the belief in only one God and the Prophethood of Mohammed, prayer, fasting, charity tax and pilgrimage. Thus, if a Muslim believes in these fundamentals, he or she is a fundamentalist. However, most media reports use the term fundamentalist to imply extremism revealing a complete ignorance by the media since Islam explicitly prohibits extremism. Prophet Mohammed said, "Those persons who go to extremes (in practicing their religions) were cursed (by God)". (Martinez, 2002) Page 4 of 23
  • 5. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 According to Yasmin Moll who criticize how Islam is viewed in Egyptian media , she criticized a recent Egyptian movie called Awqaat Faraagh (Leisure Time, 2006), three young college students experience an existential crisis when one of their friends suddenly dies while crossing the street to buy them more beer. Sitting in a souped-up Mercedes Benz filled with hashish smoke and scantily clad girls, the three boys watch in horror as their friend, high and tripping, is hit by a car and immediately falls to the ground, breathing his last with the words: “I am afraid, I am afraid.” Chastened and shocked by this tragedy, they vow to repent their dissolute lifestyles and lead more moral lives. Instead of watching Internet porn, they begin to download and watch together episodes of a religious talk-show by Amr Khaled, an immensely popular Islamic da’iya (activist, “caller” to Islam), who regularly appears on satellite television. This is an integral part of a strict moral regimen of increased prayers, abstinence from sex, alcohol and cigarettes, and more regular visits to the mosque. Soon, however, with the memory of their friend’s sudden death fading and their own lives no longer seeming so precarious, the three friends tire of this pious leisure. They switch off Khaled’s show and venture once more into Cairo’s glittering nightlife in search of other highs and ways to fill their free time. (Moll, 2010) Moll argues that its quite clear that the Egyptian movie specially that one is portrayed as a time to fill up free time, and people specially youth turn to Islam only when they face a crisis like the one mentioned in the movie. Moll continues her article to stress on the fact of the government control over media and its restrictions towards the Brotherhood and Islam in General. As with other postcolonial developing countries in the 1990s, Egypt’s media-scape went from being the exclusive domain of state-controlled, highly centralized and terrestrially based television to an increasingly competitive and fragmented satellite television scene with much private-sector control. Indeed, in Egypt, private broadcasters are only allowed to air on satellite television, with the state retaining full control over terrestrial television which, being free, easy to access, and of high programming quality, continues to command the greatest share of national viewers. Increasingly, however, middle-class and upper-middle-class viewers with moderate levels of disposable income, leisure time and more specialized viewing preferences that are Page 5 of 23
  • 6. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 unmet by mainstream fare are tuning in to one of the many satellite channels on offer, with “ed- dish” becoming a ubiquitous presence on urban roof-tops. (Moll, 2010) More cautious observers have pointed out, however, that while satellite media may not be under the direct control of the state, in many instances the industry players involved in setting them up have close personal and business ties to various political regimes, rendering the state a vocal participant by proxy (Sakr 2001; see also Kraidy 2009). In addition, top policy-makers in various countries such as Egypt and Lebanon saw an opportunity for greater influence on a regional scale through a strong satellite presence. While Abu-Lughod (2004) tracks how Egypt’s national media policy during the 1980s to mid-1990s was geared to containing and neutralizing a domestic “Islamist threat”, by the new millennium the country’s Ministry of Information had shifted its attention from “television-for security” to television for the preservation of an “Arab- Islamic identity”, with Egypt at the helm (Sakr 2001:33). However, satellite channels with strong private Saudi financial capital would increasingly usurp this role (Kraidy 2009), attracting the most talented Egyptian producers, presenters and technicians, to the great dissatisfaction of the Egyptian regime, which instituted a policy of “media nationalism” that stressed that Egyptians should work only for “Egyptian” channels (Sakr 2001:79). However, conversations with Egyptian media professionals made it clear that they are attracted to the new “Saudi” channels, not only for their higher pay and better working conditions, but also because they promise more innovative programs and more scope for personal creativity. (Moll, 2010) Given these factors, it is clear that Islamic televangelism in Egypt, despite being the most prominent part of that country’s contemporary da'wa movement, can only be productively understood within the context of regimes of mediated technology and celebrity as much as religion. This is not to subscribe, however, to a technological determinism displacing the centrality of the pious message itself and its perceived ethical consequences for individual viewers, which count as the most important aspects for interested Muslims. Following De Vries (2001:19), it is clear that “where a relationship between the phenomena is acknowledged at all, the assumed link is often an instrumentalization of one by the other, as if media formed the mere vehicle of religion or as if the medium could ever succeed in creating religion in its own image. (Moll, 2010) Page 6 of 23
  • 7. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Abstract Muslims are not extremists that is what El-Banna wanted to deliver, El-Banna and his followers started by spreading the message on a very small scale which is preaching people at social clubs, universities, and coffee-shops. El-Banna was a bright man that outranked his generation and had a vivid view of the future; El-Banna was the first to know the importance of media and he knew that this was the best way to reach mass audience so he can deliver the message to as much people and cultures as possible. El-Banna believed that Islam should be a system of life even in the political factors, but yet he and Al-Ikhwan were still categorized against the Egyptian government as political extremist. According to Al-Ikhwan Time Line 1 they were moved from civil to political when they were first viewed as a threat to the Egyptian government and political regime that was in 1948 Brothers join the Palestinian side in the war against the Zionists of Palestine. Many Egyptian officers feel the war puts them in touch with their ideology. The brothers blame the Egyptian government for passivity in the war against the Zionists, due to that the Muslim Brotherhood was banned by the authorities. AL-Ikhwan believes that they are not reforming the government nor interfering with its political regime, as till that point Al-Ikhwan is not a legalized party, but it is a group with political beliefs as part of their ideology. The Brotherhood's ideology is based on a fundamentalist approach to Islam - a return to its pure sources in the Holy Qur'an and the tradition and teachings of the Prophet Mohamed. The group views Islam not only as a religion but as a system which deals with all aspects of life. (Howeidy, 1995) Still the government and the society believe that the Brotherhood rejects the secularist approach of confining Islam to a relationship between man and his creator. It became a political movement because it demanded a reform of the government and a reconsideration of the relationship of the Umma (Muslim nation) with other nations. Due to that the government still banns them from having any political movements and having any societal activities and authorities in the society, which eventually will limit their contributions towards civil society. What others don’t know is that the Ikhwan still run in the parliament as independent figures not under a political party. 1 See Appendix for Time Line Page 7 of 23
  • 8. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 The Muslim Brotherhood has been formally banned in Egypt since 1954, but in reality, the Egyptian government has allowed it to operate within limits since the 1970s, keeping it in check with frequent arrests and crackdowns. A more open political atmosphere in 2005, due to both domestic and international pressure, led the government to grant the Brotherhood unprecedented freedom to campaign before this year's (2008) parliamentary vote. While the group's 150 candidates officially ran as independents, there was nothing secret about their Brotherhood affiliation. Candidates held rallies, hung posters with the Brotherhood's name, and used its slogan, "Islam is the Solution." (Otterman, 2009) Due to the former information it’s quite obvious that the Egyptian government are against Al- Ikhwan and against their ideology by any means, thus they are against their participation in the parliamentary elections. Due to the fact that the government was against Al-Ikhwan they had to do something to create a buzz around the MB and harm their figure among the society, before the elections. That was exactly the case that happened when the “Gama’a” Series was aired on TV, Ramadan 2010. The paper will be divided into two sections, first section will talk about stereotyping of Al-Ikhwan particularly in the time period before 2010 parliamentary elections, and second section will be the ethical point of view, of such a portrayal to the MB. Page 8 of 23
  • 9. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Al-Ikhwan Contributions Muslim Brotherhood is now viewed as a change agent to the emerging of the civil society in Egypt. Despite the limitation they had and the problems they faced they still managed to contribute. According to Yglesias, 2007 the Muslim Brotherhood just isn't a violent terrorist organization, and certainly doesn't commit acts of violence against the western counties. It's an extremely traditionalist multinational civil society organization. It's true that a lot of violent types used to be in the Brotherhood and now they're in terrorist groups, but used to be is the key phrase here; they left the Brotherhood because the Brotherhood wouldn't sign on for their agenda.” (Yglesias, 2007). People had the right to oppose Al-Ikhwan only when they formed the secret group that was committing “terrorist attacks” yet they have to be praised for all their contributions towards creating a flourishing society. The government didn’t only create a negative buzz by portraying “El Gamaa” series but they also had to close all the MB websites and related groups, blogs, forums & pages, a week before the parliamentary elections. My believe is that the government is frightened by the Ikhwan group believing that they will be the next big power. The government also knows that as much as Al- Ikhwan have enemies, yet they managed to create a reputable image among the society, due to their contributions in many aspects. The first establishment of Al-Ikhwan was a Moral Refinement School called “Tahdeeb”, which El-Banna set its Curricula for the group that attended he was interested in having Islam’s moral and civilized manners mark the conduct of the graduates of that school. The goal mentioned for the school was obtained, and the graduates were honored for their morals and high standards in many situations. This was illustrated in several concrete attitudes, including: 1. workers who showed more dynamism in performing their jobs and increasing production, 2. outstanding personal traits that were developed among Muslim Brothers, including honesty, altruism, continence and other qualities. (IkhwanWeb, 2007) Page 9 of 23
  • 10. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 The first method Al-Ikhwan used for communication was the exchange of letters but Muslim Brothers became certain that letters were not enough to spread the message and decided to issue a weekly magazine called The Muslim Brothers’ Journal The objectives of the magazine included the following:  To propagate general culture and to acquaint non-Muslim Brothers with the latter’s message and methods;  To help wake up the feelings of Islamic attachment and to strengthen the spirit of modern Islamic revival  To use the magazine as the MB’s courier to all Muslim countries, honestly speaking for them with all transparency. (IkhwanWeb, 2007) Al-Ikhwan knew the importance of women in the society and they knew that the Quran values women and her role in the society, and they knew that women have a huge influence on their kids and husbands. Al- Ikhwan have called for doing her justice, treating her with respect and for the abolition of forms of unfairness and repression towards her so that she can have her rightful access to learning, work, responsibility and choice in marriage. “Islam, the mercy of Allah, is for all of mankind and makes no preference to sex. Men and women have a calling and a place in nature. Neither has a greater value, nor is one of greater importance. Both are subject to Divine Retribution which is equal for the capacity of each. The Quran expounds upon this in multiple verses and exists as an illuminating miracle for those who reflect” (Qaradawy, 2000) In 1934 an Islamic division was opened for Muslim sisters called “Muslim Sisters Group”, the most significant objective of which was to stick to Islamic manners and to promote virtue, continence and modesty, as well as to explain the harmful effects of superstitions and rumors among female Muslims. Page 10 of 23
  • 11. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Ikhwan Utilizing Social Media In the last few years, the internet has become the primary incubator of democratic political conversation. The state has never had this role, civil society in Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood has moved online, using the information infrastructure of digital media as the place for difficult political conversations about regime change, gender and political life, and Islamic identity. The Ikhwan have launched a new website–a wiki, an online encyclopedia pages where interested individuals can register, create and edit content. The wiki documents Ikhwan history from the Brotherhood’s perspective. Unlike less practical Islamic groups, the Brotherhood has a history of engaging with and using the media since the group’s formation under Hassan el-Banna in 1928, whether this is through talking to the press or producing their own publications. The Brotherhood uses its own website as a news gateway featuring the group’s latest news, publishing their press releases and announcements as well as op-eds. by some of the group’s most prominent personalities. The wiki, which is still in its early stages with a little over 1700 accessible articles, provides the Ikhwan perspective of their own history and events in which they were involved or believe to be closely tied to their Islamic or political cause–a mini Ikhwan library for those who don’t have access to the Brotherhood’s literature or to writings by their thinkers that are available in some Islamic bookstores. (Amer, 2010) Not giving up on social media as a new factor of developing the civil society, the Muslim Brotherhood, announced it planned to launch its own social media network. The new service will reportedly have similar features to popular social networks like Facebook and My Space. However, a spokesman for the group said the purpose of the site was not solely to make friends but also to “promote moderate Islam and clarify who we are.”Ikhwanbook.com2 which is the new service is designed for Muslims around the world who are apparently uncomfortable with the more liberal content rules on non-Islamic social networks. Muslim Brotherhood officials say the content guidelines on their new site will be stricter, as will privacy rules to protect its users.Concluding the Muslim Brotherhood is developing the society in many aspects; they are 2 See Appendix for Print screen Page 11 of 23
  • 12. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 concentrating on many attributes like, education, media, arts, and literature and women rights. The have a high concentration of Education and their realization of media importance, correspondingly they are utilizing the media in delivering “Life Educational” messages. Yet they didn’t fail to realize new trends and new media, as they are wonderfully utilizing the internet as a way to develop culture, society and prosper the image of Islam. Their focus on social media shows their ability to contribute to the civil society, as online groups and blogs are the next big thing in formulating opinions and creating observant cultures. Page 12 of 23
  • 13. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 The Stereotyping| Al Gama’a Since Al Gama’a series was first aired in TV in Ramadan 2010 it raised a lot of debates among the society. Dr. Mohamed El Beltagy3 stated that he is highly against and that he is so unhappy with that new series, and he described it as: a vivid & concrete example to control the media, and use it as a vehicle to portray the government political orientations. El Beltagy also stated that Waheed Hammed, the writer of the series, has twisted the reality to defame Al-Ikhwan for political reasons, in favor of the government in 2010 parliamentary elections. The series, presented the history of Al-Ikhwan and the biography of its founder Hassan El- Banna, but the series started in year 2006 while hey stressed on what the MB were after, and stating that they were after power and ruling the country. some of the viewers of the series, believed that Al-Ikhwan are a threat on Egyptian society, while others believe that the government is overdoing it and they are portraying Al-Ikhwan in an offensive way. The author of the series Waheed Hammed was accused before by supporters of the MB that he was anti-Muslim Brotherhood group with which he attacked in his private film former "Birds of Darkness,” written after the victory of the Muslim Brotherhood candidates in the elections of the lawyer’s Association. The portrayal in El Gama’a series was not the first stereotype, as the Ikhwani character was always portrayed as, people who seek any opportunities to reach their own good, layers who don’t care about what God thinks, and they can even work with the devil to get their needs. The always seek money and power, and they are just pure gangsters. That was the case in Al Gama’a in the character of “Bahgat El Sawah”, “Rashed” in “Days of Love & Salt” and “Ali El Zanaty” in “Birds of Darkness” 3 Mohamed El-Beltagy: ‫أﻣﯿﻦ ﻋﺎم ﻛﺘﻠﺔ ﻹﺧﻮان اﻟﻤﺴﻠﻤﯿﻦ‬ Page 13 of 23
  • 14. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Ezzat El-Alyaly, one of the actors in El Gama’a Stated that the series has nothing to do with Al- Ikhwan loosing in the parliamentary elections, and people with political orientation are the ones who see this series in favor of politics, while other viewers just praise the artistic part of the series. I have to agree with him that the series didn’t cause the Ikhwan failure in the elections, its because it was obvious that the government wont let them win anyways, but I will disagree about the fact that only the political oriented people are the ones who saw that from a political perspective. I am one of the people who have no political orientations what so ever and I was still offended about the way Al-Ikhwan were portrayed, and I was quite sure that they chose to air the series in that timing in particular for the elections. Page 14 of 23
  • 15. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Linking the constitution with reality Article 1, 5&2| One Nation The first article in the constitution states that Egypt is a democratic country, and all the Egyptian work together to create united nation. The fifth article talks about the right of the Egyptians in creating political parties, but it just has to be without any religious perspectives nor any religious orientations Article 1 ‫ﺟﻣﮭورﯾﺔ ﻣﺻر اﻟﻌرﺑﯾﺔ دوﻟﺔ ﻧظﺎﻣﮭﺎ دﯾﻣﻘراطﻰ ﯾﻘوم ﻋﻠﻰ أﺳﺎس اﻟﻣواطﻧﺔ. واﻟﺷﻌب اﻟﻣﺻرى ﺟزء ﻣن اﻷﻣﺔ اﻟﻌرﺑﯾﺔ ﯾﻌﻣل ﻋﻠﻰ ﺗﺣﻘﯾق‬ .‫وﺣدﺗﮭﺎ اﻟﺷﺎﻣﻠﺔ‬ Article 5 ‫ﯾﻘوم اﻟﻧظﺎم اﻟﺳﯾﺎﺳﻰ ﻓـﻰ ﺟﻣﮭورﯾﺔ ﻣﺻر اﻟﻌرﺑﯾﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ أﺳﺎس ﺗﻌدد اﻷﺣزاب وذﻟك ﻓـﻰ إطﺎر اﻟﻣﻘوﻣﺎت واﻟﻣﺑﺎدئ اﻷﺳﺎﺳﯾﺔ ﻟﻠﻣﺟﺗﻣﻊ‬ ‫اﻟﻣﺻرى اﻟﻣﻧﺻوص ﻋﻠﯾﮭﺎ ﻓـﻰ اﻟدﺳﺗور. وﯾﻧظم اﻟﻘﺎﻧون اﻷﺣزاب اﻟﺳﯾﺎﺳﯾﺔ. وﻟﻠﻣواطﻧﯾن ﺣق ﺗﻛوﯾن اﻷﺣزاب اﻟﺳﯾﺎﺳﯾﺔ وﻓﻘﺎ ﻟﻠﻘﺎﻧون. وﻻ‬ ‫ﺗﺟوز ﻣﺑﺎﺷرة أى ﻧﺷﺎط ﺳﯾﺎﺳﻰ أو ﻗﯾﺎم أﺣزاب ﺳﯾﺎﺳﯾﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ أﯾﺔ ﻣرﺟﻌﯾﺔ دﯾﻧﯾﺔ أو أﺳﺎس دﯾﻧﻲ، أو ﺑﻧﺎء ﻋﻠﻰ اﻟﺗﻔرﻗﺔ ﺑﺳﺑب اﻟﺟﻧس أو‬ .‫اﻷﺻل‬ Linking the former two articles along with second article that states that “Islam is the main religion in the country and all rules and values are based on the Islamic Shari’ea, we will come up with the fact that the constitution is contradicting itself, first it stated that Egypt is a democratic country and we are all working for the benefits of one nation, democracy means that any one can form a political party as stated in the fifth article, yet no party can be created with a any religious orientation. How is the previous fact possible when the second article states that the Islamic shari’ea is ruling Egypt? So how can the government restrict forming a political party under an “Islamic Orientation”? That question applies on the following case: as the government prevented Al-Ikhwan from forming a political party, and they still run in the elections as independent, and without the umbrella of a political party. Page 15 of 23
  • 16. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Article 9 & 12| Society & Ethics The 9th & 12th article both discuss following religion, having values & concrete principles in life, and that these values are the essence to succeed in all aspects of life. The Brotherhood's ideology is based on a fundamentalist approach to Islam - a return to its pure sources in the Holy Qur'an and the tradition and teachings of the Prophet Mohamed. The group views Islam not only as a religion but as a system which deals with all aspects of life. (Howeidy, 1995) ; It’s about outstanding behavior and attitude in work, career and personal lives. Islam is about developing nation and maintaining the civil society, Islam is about retaining the Egyptian and Islamic identity, following values & principles and being moderate. Although the ninth and twelfths article matches the MB ideology, Al-Ikhwan were still negatively portrayed in the media, as terrorist who are looking for corruption and abolishing the purity of Islam. Article 9 ‫اﻷﺳرة أﺳﺎس اﻟﻣﺟﺗﻣﻊ، ﻗواﻣﮭﺎ اﻟدﯾن واﻷﺧﻼق واﻟوطﻧﯾﺔ. وﺗﺣرص اﻟدوﻟﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ اﻟﺣﻔﺎظ ﻋﻠﻰ اﻟطﺎﺑﻊ اﻷﺻﯾل ﻟﻸﺳرة اﻟﻣﺻرﯾﺔ وﻣﺎ ﯾﺗﻣﺛل‬ ‫.ﻓﯾﮫ ﻣن ﻗﯾم وﺗﻘﺎﻟﯾد، ﻣﻊ ﺗﺄﻛﯾد ھذا اﻟطﺎﺑﻊ وﺗﻧﻣﯾﺗﮫ ﻓﻰ اﻟﻌﻼﻗﺎت داﺧل اﻟﻣﺟﺗﻣﻊ اﻟﻣﺻري‬ Article 12 ‫ﯾﻠﺗزم اﻟﻣﺟﺗﻣﻊ ﺑرﻋﺎﯾﺔ اﻷﺧﻼق وﺣﻣﺎﯾﺗﮭﺎ، واﻟﺗﻣﻛﯾن ﻟﻠﺗﻘﺎﻟﯾد اﻟﻣﺻرﯾﺔ اﻷﺻﯾﻠﺔ، وﻋﻠﯾﮫ ﻣراﻋﺎة اﻟﻣﺳﺗوى اﻟرﻓـﯾﻊ ﻟﻠﺗرﺑﯾﺔ اﻟدﯾﻧﯾﺔ واﻟﻘﯾم اﻟﺧﻠﻘﯾﺔ‬ ‫واﻟوطﻧﯾﺔ، واﻟﺗراث اﻟﺗﺎرﯾﺧﻰ ﻟﻠﺷﻌب، واﻟﺣﻘﺎﺋق اﻟﻌﻠﻣﯾﺔ، واﻵداب اﻟﻌﺎﻣﺔ، وذﻟك ﻓـﻰ ﺣدود اﻟﻘﺎﻧون. وﺗﻠﺗزم اﻟدوﻟﺔ ﺑﺈﺗﺑﺎع ھذه اﻟﻣﺑﺎدئ‬ ‫.واﻟﺗﻣﻛﯾن ﻟﮭﺎ‬ Page 16 of 23
  • 17. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Article 47 & 48| Freedom The articles concentrating on freedom are the most important ones from my opinion, in the 47th article states that every person has the right to express their opinion openly and freely, whether spoken or written without no restrictions. So why doesn’t the government give Al-Ikhwan the right to speak and spread their ideology? Well probably feeling frightened by the power religion and right values can do. The 48th article about media freedom states that there are no boundaries on media, it just has to follow the law and ethics. This means that Waheed Hammed and his crew had the right to preview the biography of Hassan El Banna and the history of Al-Ikhwan. That is not the case as expressing his opinion contradicts Article 1 & 5 which is overstepping on religion, along with contradicting with the invading the privacy of a certain public figure without their consent. Not following this rule, the crew of Al Gamaa series were sued by El-Banna’s Family and had to face court. Article 47 ،‫ﺣرﯾﺔ اﻟرأي ﻣﻛﻔوﻟﺔ، وﻟﻛل إﻧﺳﺎن اﻟﺗﻌﺑﯾر ﻋن رأﯾﮫ وﻧﺷره ﺑﺎﻟﻘول أو اﻟﻛﺗﺎﺑﺔ أو اﻟﺗﺻوﯾر أو ﻏﯾر ذﻟك ﻣن وﺳﺎﺋل اﻟﺗﻌﺑﯾر ﻓﻲ ﺣدود اﻟﻘﺎﻧون‬ .‫واﻟﻧﻘد اﻟذاﺗﻲ واﻟﻧﻘد اﻟﺑﻧﺎء ﺿﻣﺎن ﻟﺳﻼﻣﺔ اﻟﺑﻧﺎء اﻟوطﻧﻲ‬ Article 48 ‫ﺣرﯾﺔ اﻟﺻﺣﺎﻓﺔ واﻟطﺑﺎﻋﺔ واﻟﻧﺷر ووﺳﺎﺋل اﻹﻋﻼم ﻣﻛﻔوﻟﺔ، واﻟرﻗﺎﺑﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ اﻟﺻﺣف ﻣﺣظورة وإﻧذارھﺎ أو وﻗﻔﮭﺎ أو إﻟﻐﺎؤھﺎ ﺑﺎﻟطرﯾق‬ ‫اﻹداري ﻣﺣظور، وﯾﺟوز اﺳﺗﺛﻧﺎء ﻓﻲ ﺣﺎﻟﺔ إﻋﻼن اﻟطوارئ أو زﻣن اﻟﺣرب أن ﯾﻔرض ﻋﻠﻰ اﻟﺻﺣف واﻟﻣطﺑوﻋﺎت ووﺳﺎﺋل اﻹﻋﻼم رﻗﺎﺑﺔ‬ .‫ﻣﺣددة ﻓﻲ اﻷﻣور اﻟﺗﻲ ﺗﺗﺻل ﺑﺎﻟﺳﻼﻣﺔ اﻟﻌﺎﻣﺔ أو أﻏراض اﻷﻣن اﻟﻘوﻣﻲ، وذﻟك ﻛﻠﮫ وﻓﻘﺎ ﻟﻠﻘﺎﻧون‬ Page 17 of 23
  • 18. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 The Potter Box The Potter Box has four steps. Potter’s Box is an ethical framework used to make decisions by utilizing four categories which Potter identifies as universal to all ethical dilemmas. Potter was a theologian when he developed this moral reasoning framework. The Potter Box uses four dimensions of moral analysis to help in situations where ethical dilemmas occur: Facts, Values, Principles, and Loyalties as described below. In our case the ethical dilemma is about whether it was ethical or unethical to portray such a series in that particular period of time, which is before the parliamentary elections. Definition / Facts In Ramadan 2010 an Egyptian drama named “El-Gama’a” talking about the Muslim Brotherhood, their history and the biography of its founder. The point here is that portraying such religious figures should be away from political orientation or not, and is it ethical to air it in that critical time, which is parliamentary election, to defame the image of the MB. Values Socio-culture values, sees who were the groups or individuals who were offended or harmed in the society, in our case the MB and its supporters will be offended by the negative image that they were portrayed in and it will shake their image in the society. Moral Values, which is concentrated in honesty, non-violence & integrity, El-Banna’s privacy was invaded, his biography was portrayed without no consent from his family nor friends. If the series was honest it would have taken the families consent, and it wont be so biased to the government, it would have shown both sides of the story rather than focusing on the governmental perspective. Professional Values, believing that it was totally unprofessional and not punctual to view one side of the story, makes the professional value in airing the series low. Also the timing is so unprofessional as the series work in favor for one of the parties involved in the parliamentary elections. Logical Values, it is logical and valid for any one to portray his opinion about anything and anyone, but it is also logical to not be biased and not invade the privacy nor the freedom of any individual or group. Page 18 of 23
  • 19. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Principles  Aristotle's Golden Mean. Aristotle's Golden Mean defines moral virtue as a middle state determined practical wisdom that emphasizes moderation and temperance.  Confucius' Golden Mean. Confucius' Golden Mean is more commonly known as the compromise principle and says moral virtue is the appropriate location between two extremes.  Kant's Categorical Imperative. Kant's Categorical Imperative dictates what we must never do, and those actions that have become universal law.  Mill's Principle of Utility. John Stuart Mill's Principle of Utility dictates that we must seek the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people.  Rawls' Veil of Ignorance. John Rawls' Veil of Ignorance asks us to place ourselves in the position of the people our decisions may influence.  Agape Principle. This principle, also known as the Judeo-Christian, 'Persons as Ends' principle, emphasizes love for our fellow humans and the golden rule. Referring to Confucius Golden mean, which states having a compromise between two extremes, a decision will be made. If it is really necessary to air the series, probably it can be aired in an different period of time that is not related to political figures, and it would have been better if two sides of the story were shown, in order to leave the decision to the audience to make. Loyalties The loyalties of any media vehicle have to be the welfare of the public; they deserve not to be deceived, they deserve to make their own decision about any topic, and they deserve not to be offended. For many people Al-Ikhwan are role model and they believe that the ideology they follow is the right and most religious ideology to follow. Conclusion Using the Potter Box Reaching the conclusion of not airing the series in that particular time, and staying away from biased political orientations will be the chosen decision. Also taking the consent of the people portrayed will be a must, along with showing the opinions of both sides and leaving the final decision to the audience, based on their orientations, perspectives and frame of reference. Page 19 of 23
  • 20. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Appendix Muslim Brotherhood History Time Line 1928: Founded by Hassan al-Banna as a youth club. 1936: The Muslim Brotherhood takes a pro-Arab position following the Anglo-Egyptian Treaty and the start of the Palestinian uprising against Zionist settlements in Palestine. 1939: The Muslim Brotherhood defines itself as a political organization based on the Koran and the Hadith, a system applicable to modern society. 1940: The Brotherhood realizes 500 branches, each with its own centre, mosque, school and club. 1940-45: During World War 2, the Brotherhood experiences fast growth, and is joined by individuals from the lower and middle strata of society. 1946: The Brotherhood claims to have more than 5,000 branches, over 500,000 members and even more sympathizers. 1948: Brothers join the Palestinian side in the war against the Zionists of Palestine. Many Egyptian officers feel the war puts them in touch with their ideology. — The brothers blame the Egyptian government for passivity in the war against the Zionists. They initiate terrorist attacks within Egypt. — December: The Muslim Brotherhood is banned by the authorities. — December 28: Prime Minister Mahmud Fahmi Nokrashi is assassinated by a brother. This leads to even more repression from the government. 1949 February: Hassan al-Banna is killed by secret agents in Cairo. 1950: The Brotherhood is legalized again, but only as a religious body. 1951: Hassan Islam al-Hudaibi, a moderate, is elected leader of the Brotherhood. 1952 January: The Brotherhood is active during the anti-British riots in Cairo. — July: Unlike political parties, the Brotherhood is not banned following the coup by the Revolutionary Command Council (RCC). This happens because the Brotherhood in in cooperation with the revolutionaries. 1954 February: Due to differences about the appropriate governmental system, whether Sharia or secular law, the Brotherhood is banned again. Page 20 of 23
  • 21. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 — October 23: A Brotherhood activist, Abdul Munim Abdul Rauf, tries to assassinate president Nasser, but fails. Following this, he and 5 other brothers are executed, 4,000 members are arrested. Thousands flee to Syria, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Lebanon. 1964: A general amnesty is granted to imprisoned brothers. Nasser wants them to join the newly formed government party, the Arab Socialist Union, to ward off the threat of communism. This conditional cooperation policy does not succeed, and Nasser is exposed to 3 more assassination attempts. 1966: The top leaders of the Brotherhood are executed, and many other members imprisoned. 1968 April: Around 1,000 brothers are released from prison by president Nasser. 1970: With the death of Nasser, the new president, Anwar as-Sadat, promises the brothers that Sharia shall be implemented as the law of Egypt. All Brotherhood prisoners are released. 1976: The Muslim Brotherhood is not allowed to participate in the general elections, so many brothers run as independent candidates or as members of the ruling Arab Socialist Party. Altogether they gain 15 seats. 1979: The Brotherhood opposes strongly the peace agreement between Egypt and Israel. 1981 September: About 2,000 dissidents are arrested, of which a majority are brothers. — October 6: President Sadat is assassinated by 4 brothers. 1984: The Muslim Brotherhood cooperates with the Neo-Wafd Party in the general elections. The brothers win 8 seats. 1987: The Brotherhood cooperates with the Socialist Labour Party and the Liberal Socialist Party to form the Labour Islamic Alliance. The alliance wins 60 seats, of which 37 are held by brothers. 1990: The Brotherhood boycotts the elections, protesting government controls at the polls. 2005 The Muslim Brotherhood is prevented from running for parliamentary elections as a political party. But their candidates, running as independents, manage to win 88 seats out of a total 454, making them by far the largest opposition group (other parties win 14 seats). Page 21 of 23
  • 22. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Page 22 of 23
  • 23. Muslim Brotherhood Stereotyping in Government Controlled Media Fall 2010 Works Cited Amer, P. (2010). Muslim Brotherhood use new media to document history. Al-Masry Al Yom , English . Centre for Civil Society, L. S. (2004, 3 1). What is Civil Society . Retrieved 2009, from Dhar, S. (2008). Egypt's Changing Civil Society: The Muslim Brotherhood and New Media. All Academic| Research . Harmsen, E. (2008). Islam, Civil Societ & Social Work . Amesterdam : Amestredam University Press. Howeidy, A. (1995, November 22). Politics in God's Name. Al-Ahram Weekly Online . IkhwanWeb. (2007, June 10). About MB > Profiles| Establishment of the Muslim Brotherhood . Retrieved from The Muslim Brotherhood Official English Website : Khallaf, M. (2010). Civil Society in Egypt: A litreture Review . Cairo : Foundation for the Future . Martinez, P. (2002). Muslim Culture, Religion Misrepresented By Media. Islam Hearld . Moll, Y. (2010, April 25). Islamic Televangelism: Religion, Media and Visuality in Contemporary Egypt . IkhwanWeb| Retrived from Arab Media & Society . Otterman, S. (2009). Muslim Brotherhood and Egypt's Parliamentary Elections. Council on Foregin Relations . Qaradawy, D. A. (2000). The Statues of Women in Islam . Rahman, M. A. (2004). Civil Society Exposed: The Politics of NGOs in Egypt. Cairo. Sullivan, D., & Abed-Kotob, S. (1999). The Muslim Brother Hood| Chapter 3. In D. Sullivan, & S. Abed- Kotob, Islam in contemporary Egypt: civil society vs. the state (pp. 41-65). Colorado,USA: Lynne Rienner. Yglesias, M. (2007). Romney Versus The Muslim Brotherhood. The Atlantic Co. Page 23 of 23