In secret elections, the Muslim Brotherhood appointed Muhammad Badee its new leader. Badee is a hardline associate of Qutb, the Brotherhood’s venerable cleric who permitted killing of Muslims and infidels alike.

Badee’s succession signals the Muslim Brotherhood’s refusal to compromise. The Brotherhood supports Iran and calls for the annihilation of Israel. The US pressure for democratic elections in Egypt made the Muslim Brotherhood into the largest opposition faction in the parliament.

Two tendencies compete here. The Brotherhood’s members are becoming generally more moderate along with Egyptian society at large. At the same time, the Brotherhood’s ascent to power brings radical Islamists to the top, either directly or through their influence on the “independent” MPs. Thus, it remains unpredictable whether Egypt will follow the path of moderation or fall to Islamists.

Samson Blinded