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Cable sobre el perfil que EE UU hace sobre el nuevo líder de los Hermanos Musulmanes en Egipto

La Embajada de EE UU en El Cairo describía en enero de 2010 a Mohamed Badie, de 67 años, como "un administrativo casi desconocido", elegido tras un proceso que levantó ampollas internas (por discrepancias sobre las prioridades y los ritmos, no ideológicas) en el movimiento islamista egipcio.

ID: 244716
Date: 2010-01-21 15:51:00
Origin: 10CAIRO119
Source: Embassy Cairo
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Dunno: 09CAIRO1893 09CAIRO2011 09CAIRO2298
Destination: VZCZCXRO4207
RR RUEHROV
DE RUEHEG #0119/01 0211552
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 211551Z JAN 10
FM AMEMBASSY CAIRO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0023
INFO ARAB ISRAELI COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 CAIRO 000119

SIPDIS
NSC FOR AGUIRRE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 2020/01/21
TAGS: PREL, PGOV, KDEM, KISL, EG
SUBJECT: EGYPT: NEW MB SUPREME GUIDE NAMED

REF: 09 CAIRO 2298; 09 CAIRO 2011; 09 CAIRO 1893

CLASSIFIED BY: Donald A. Blome, Minister Counselor, Department of
State, Economic and Political Affairs; REASON: 1.4(B), (D)

1. Key Points:



-- (C) Administrative insider and relative unknown Mohammed Badie,
66, was named the Muslim Brotherhood's eighth Supreme Guide on
January 16. Badie's selection represents a generational shift
within the group. He is the first Guide not to have known
MB-founder Hassan Al-Banna.



-- (C) In his first public statement, Badie attempted to minimize
the significance of disagreements among MB leaders that had spilled
into public view. Some analysts question his ability to heal the
internal rifts that remain after bitter infighting surrounding the
election process.



-- (C) Guidance Bureau elections preceding the selection of Badie
signaled a shift toward "conservatism" in the group. That shift
has largely been viewed as evidence the group will become less
politically active.



-- (C) Badie's initial statement signaled continued political
engagement (although perhaps more modest than 2005) and sent a
message to the regime that the MB is not its enemy.



2. (C) Comment: The recent public airing of internal conflicts
within the MB, something new and unwelcome to parts of the MB
leadership especially the "traditionalists" that now dominate the
Guidance Bureau, is likely to result in a long-term internal review
process. Under Badie we may see a preference for increased secrecy
and internal control. At stake is the restoration of the MB's
public image -- the MB had often been seen as the opposition
movement able to rise above internal power plays. In addition, the
new leadership may reposition the MB's role in the Egyptian
political scene, shifting it out of the public spotlight as a
potential competitor to the ruling National Democratic Party in
national elections. Badie's own statement affirms that the MB will
continue to pursue a parallel strategy that includes political
participation and its well-established social and religious work.
However, a more "conservative" or "traditionalist" leadership is
likely to be more cautious in its approach to upcoming 2010
parliamentary elections. A complete withdrawal from electoral
participation is doubtful. Continued pressure from security
services and its own internal processes will mean the MB is likely
to field fewer candidates than it did in 2005. End Comment.



--------------------------

New MB Supreme Guide Named

--------------------------



3. (C) On Saturday January 16, the Muslim Brotherhood named
Mohammed Badie (Badee) as its eighth Supreme Guide. A relative
unknown, Badie's name had been circulating in the media for several
days after reports were leaked that he had received the highest
number of votes from the approximately 100-member MB Shura Council.
Badie has been a member of the Guidance Bureau since 1996 and has
held several administrative positions in the group (see Bio Note in
Para 11). Most commentators see his selection as a sign the MB
will now turn its attention inward, focusing on getting its own
house in order following a series of publically aired internal
disputes over internal election procedures (Ref A). In comments to
independent daily Al Masry Al Youm, new member of the Guidance
Bureau (and the only known "reformer" among its ranks) Essam El
Eryan said the new Guide's primary task will be "internal reform".

CAIRO 00000119 002 OF 005


------------------

A Unifying Choice?

------------------



4. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXX, described Badie as an MB
"moderate" known for his affable personality and ability to
"communicate well," making him well-suited to help heal the
apparent rift between MB "reformers" and "conservatives." However,
XXXXXXXXXXXX suggests that as the
first Guide not to have derived his legitimacy from a personal
relationship with MB founder Hassan Al Banna, Badie is not only
potentially less legitimate but also lacks the "gravitas" needed to
handle internal disputes. Badie's leadership may benefit from
internal MB fatigue -- a result of GOE pressure on the group and
the public airing of its internal dirty laundry. In his first
speech as Supreme Guide, Badie rejected any rift or "disunity" in
the group and underscored that the MB is a dynamic institution that
"operates according to rules" which remain under "constant review."
Until naming a new Secretary General (Dr. Mahmoud Hussein), Badie
had been described by some Embassy contacts as a proxy for the more
influential "conservative" leader former Secretary General Mahmoud
Ezzat (Note: Badie and Ezzat share a common experience as part of
the group detained with Sayed El Qutb in 1965. End Note.). While
Ezzat appears to have had a strong behind the scenes role as the
power behind the "conservative" shift, the impact of his removal
from the administrative post of Secretary General is unclear.



--------------------------------------

MB Participation in Upcoming Elections

---------------------------------------



5. (C) The verdict is still out on what recent internal elections
mean for continued political participation by the MB. According to
XXXXXXXXXXXX analysts who track the MB and other
Islamic movements in Egypt) the result will likely be an MB more
focused on religious activity (or "dawa") and social services and a
decrease in the level of MB participation in the upcoming
elections. Choubaki suggests that while Badie and other members of
the Guidance Bureau have long-term experience with managing the
administration of the group, none are known for their efforts at
organizing political participation. However, XXXXXXXXXXXX who maintains close contact
with the MB, cautioned PolOff against assuming a complete "retreat"
by the group from political life. He told PolOff that
"conservative" leaders, particularly Ezzat, may reject the need for
an MB-affiliated political party advocated by reformers like Abdel
Moneim Fotouh, but remain firmly committed to MB participation in
the elections. According to XXXXXXXXXXXX, what may change is the number
of candidates the group will run in the 2010 parliamentary
elections. In his view, the final number will depend primarily on
signals from the GOE.



-----------------

Politics as Usual

-----------------



6. (C) In a speech delivered following his "swearing in" ceremony
on Saturday January 16, Badie did not signal a change in strategy
and said political participation would continue go hand in hand
with the MB's "community work." Badie called "democracy" (also
referred to in the speech as the process of "consultation")
fundamental to the MB's own practices. He emphasized the MB's
commitment to majority rule and its acceptance of "the plurality of
parties and the freedom for the parties to be established without
restrictions" as defined in the constitution and the transfer of
power among these parties through "free and fair elections." In
an effort perhaps to reach out to the regime, Badie said in his
speech that the MB is not an "opponent" of the current regime.

CAIRO 00000119 003 OF 005


However, he vowed to remain critical of "corrupted policies."
Badie affirmed the MB's rejection of violence and stated the MB
seeks "gradual reform through a peaceful and constitutional
struggle."



--------------------------------------------- ---------

Conservatives Consolidate Influence in Guidance Bureau

--------------------------------------------- ---------



7. (C) The naming of the new Guide followed the December 2009
election of the MB's primary administrative body, the Guidance
Bureau. These were the first Guidance Bureau elections since 1995.
The term for each member is six years. The term is extended if
elections are delayed. Once voted onto the Bureau, members receive
lifetime membership in the MB's legislative body, the Shura
Council. In the recent elections, leaders of the movement's
"conservative" wing appear to have cemented their leadership (see
the complete list of new members in Para 10). Deputy Supreme Guide
Mohammed Habib, thought by many to be the next MB Supreme Guide,
was removed from the Bureau, as was recently released reformer
Abdel Moneim Al Fotouh. In the most public airing of internal MB
disputes in recent memory, Habib had publically insisted the
election process was not legitimate, despite then-Guide Akef's
public certification of the results. Following the elections,
Habib resigned from his role as Deputy Guide, the Guidance Bureau
and his seat on the International Shura Council (giving up
therefore any influence over the naming of the next Guide). Habib
was absent from the press conference announcing Badie as was
Fotouh.



----------------------------

Not Ideology but Perspective

----------------------------



8. (C) XXXXXXXXXXXX a close observer of the MB's internal
mechanics, told PolOff the exclusion of Mohammed Habib and Fotouh
from the Bureau was a sanction for their public criticism of the
group and not a rejection of their views. In his view the
difference between "conservatives" and "reformers" in the group is
not ideological. Instead it is their perspective, short-term vs.
long-term, that determines how they set priorities and implement
programs to achieve the group's goal of social, economic and
political reform based on the principles of Islam. "Conservatives"
like Ezzat are interested in the group's interests over the next
twenty years. This results in a tendency to focus first on
organizational unity. On the other hand, according to Habib,
"reformers" like Fotouh are focused on what is happening in the
next few years. They are more likely to press the group to take
advantage of the current political and social environment,
including forming alliances with other groups, to promote the
group's interests. Habib also pointed out that while the previous
Guidance Bureau had a wide generational distribution, the current
group is mostly homogeneous, with only a few members over the age
of 60. In his view, the prevalence of a "common experience" was
thus likely to make this a less contentious group.



------------------------------------------

GOE Pressure Behind the Conservative Shift

------------------------------------------



9. (C) Others see the shift to the "right" as a direct result of
GoE pressure on the group over the last year. XXXXXXXXXXXX
suggested high-profile arrests targeting known MB
"reformers" (Ref B) were part of an effort to sideline those who
would push for participation in the elections on the scale seen in
2005. He called this a "short-term" strategy he expected to
backfire. While the security services see the "conservative wing,"

CAIRO 00000119 004 OF 005


which is focused on the group's long term survival, as easier to
control than the reform wing, XXXXXXXXXXXX that the group,
without a strong reform trend, will become both more isolated and
more likely "act outside the law." (Note: XXXXXXXXXXXX



-----------------------------

December 2009 Guidance Bureau

-----------------------------



10. XXXXXXXXXXXX


--------

Bio Note

--------

CAIRO 00000119 005 OF 005


11. (C) Mohammed Badie Abdel Maguid Samy born August 7, 1943 in
the Delta city Mahala Al-Kobra, is an associate professor of
pathology at the Beni Sweif University Faculty of Veterinary
Medicine. Badie has been a member of the MB Guidance Bureau since
1996 and it's International Shura Council since 2007. After
graduating from Cairo University's Faculty of Veterinary Medicine,
he was appointed lecture at the University of Asyut. In 1965 he
was arrested along with Sayed Qutb and jailed for nine years for
being part of the MB paramilitary unit accused of attempting to
assassinate Nasser and overthrow the regime. Badie was released in
1974 by President Anwar Sadat following the MB's decision to
renounce violence. After his release, Badie received a Doctorate
in Veterinary Medicine from Zagazig University (1979) and joined
the faculty in 1983. In 1977 Badie was named the head of the MB's
administrative office in Mahalla. Badie taught in Yemen from 1982
to 1986 (and served on the MB's education committee while in
Sana'a). Since his return to Egypt in 1987 Badie has continued to
teach veterinary medicine in Beni Suef. In 1994 Badie joined the
MB's "administrative office" in Beni Suef and the local education
committee. Badie was arrested in 1999 and sentenced by a Military
Court to a five-year term for syndicate activity. He was released
early in 2003 after serving part of his term. According to Embassy
contact Rafik Habib, Badie has been acting over the last several
years as the head of MB's national education committee.
Responsible for the "formation" of new members, including
ideological preparation, Badie is well versed in the group's
internal procedures and details of its membership. (Note: Given
the group's continued secretive nature, information on membership
is not widely shared, even among members of the Guidance Bureau.
End Note.) (Sources: Embassy contacts and various media sources,
including the MB's English-language website Ikhwanweb.com)
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