The ‘Old’ Brotherhood and the New Approach!

By Mohammad Aburumman

تم نشره في Tue 1 November / Nov 2016. 01:00 AM
  • Mohammad Aburumman

In spite of there being a lot of dispute within the Muslim Brotherhood community, in addition to division and splintering, which led to the birth of new political experiments, through new parties which broke out of the womb of the Islamist current, including the Muslim Brotherhood society, and Zamzam and the Partnership and Salvation party, as well as the Islamist Centre, before them; a new common denominator surfaces with their common announcement of interest in the idea of national partnership, the civil state, and dialogue.

Looking into the statements of both the Zamzam and the ‘Partnership and Salvation’ parties, both under construction, and before that; into the literatures of the Islamic Centre, founded in 2001 by former leaders with the Muslim Brotherhood, compared to the pragmatic propositions by the Islamic Action Front (IAF), compounded, it all indicates a real leap in Islamist Ideology towards civil political party practice, the separation of missionary religious and political roles, and the overcoming of the Sharia and ideological obstacles that hindered this redirection before, in suit with the Tunisian and Moroccan Islamist discourses, led first by the Turkish “Justice and Development” party; which all in all comprises a worthy development.

The variation lies in that the IAF is now en route towards the establishment of national partnerships with patriotic leaders and political forces, within a national framwork, led by Zaki Bani Irsheid, despite of the traditional, conservative, opposing voices within the party and the Brotherhood. And the disparity here lies in that these steps were once refused by the party, which is the very cause of dispute between moderate leaders of the Brotherhood party, like Ruhayel Gharaibeh and Nabil Kofahi, and the current leadership including Bani Irsheid!

More importantly, regardless, the IAF seems to be going down this realistic and reasonable route, which is good and positive in any way, and predicts the renewal of a national Islamic dialect in Jordan, despite the variety in new experiments!

That said, why is there still a dispute among the Olds guard and the Avant-garde Islamists?!

A crucial, but complex inquiry indeed, because the ideological part of it is tangled up in the subjective and personal components of the question, in addition to the State’s influence in the overall equation, which coupled makes it more or less a grey area. Moreover, there is the social factor; the IAF finds its populace within the Jordanian-Palestinian midst, with my apologies for using this term for the purpose of sociological analysis, while both Zamzam and the Islamist Centre still do not have a concrete populace. On the other hand, the ‘Partnership and Salvation’ experiment still needs time to mature and answer crucial questions on the construction of social basis, incubators, and organisational leadership.

So, stepping down from the ideological and theoretical aspect of Islamist political components to practical practice, the disparity seems more clear between these Islamist groups; not only between the IAF and the new groups, but between the later themselves.

So far, the IAF, is still dressed in attires of Political Islam, despite recent steps to detach from the Islamist colour, with a considerable current within the party doubtful of the point of political party practice, in spite of being members of the party. Still, the current leadership is determined to push on.

Likewise, the Islamic Centre party underwent contrasting phases, and has seen several shifts; while with new leadership today, still, they endure numerous crises and predicaments, with them and the newborn Zamzam party, feeding off the same social populace. Zamzam, on the other hand, is theoretically much more advanced than the Centre, realistically speaking, due to there being prominent theorists among them, like Gharaibeh and Kofahi. Still, they could not find a practical path to the realisation of their advanced ideas.

Last but not least, the Partnership and Salvation party leans more towards national opposition than to the State, and is still crystallising.