United States Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and four other congress members called on security agencies to investigate possible Muslim Brotherhood infiltration into the American government, accusing a number of American officials of conspiring against the United States and promoting the cause of the Brotherhood.
The claims made by Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, a member of the house Intelligence Committee along with Trent Franks, Louie Gohmert, Thomas Rooney and Lynn Westmoreland, were based on a report called “Muslim Brotherhood in America” produced by the conservative Center for Security Policy which is led by Frank Gaffney. Gaffney is known for his strong anti-Brotherhood and Islamic Shari’a stances.
These allegations have raised controversy within American government and media circles. Among those accused are, Huma Abedin, a top aide of United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to congress.
Bachmann attacked Ellison on a conservative radio show on Thursday saying Ellison “has a long record of being associated with CAIR (the Council on American–Islamic Relations) and with the Muslim Brotherhood.”
Ellison said on CNN that the only thing he could recall about the Brotherhood is that one of its candidates, formerly a professor in an American college, was elected Egypt’s President.
In a statement on her website, Bachmann criticised the Obama administration for giving Hani Nour Eldin, a member of Egyptian Islamist Group that was banned until the 25 January revolution, a visa to enter the US and granting him a meeting with National Security Council officials inside the White House.
During the meeting, he called for the release of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, who is imprisoned for participating in the 1993 World Trade Centre bombing and planning other terrorist attacks in the US.
Bachmann was criticised equally by Democrats and Republicans for her statements that could fuel hatred against American Muslims and “unveil a phobia against Arabs, Muslims and the Islamic religion” Republican Senator John McCain said in his floor speech in the US Senate. “When anyone, not least a member of Congress, launches specious and degrading attacks against fellow Americans on the basis of nothing more than fear of who they are and ignorance of what they stand for, it defames the spirit of our nation, and we all grow poorer because of it,” McCain said.
Samir El- Wesseimy, member of the media committee of the freedom and justice party (the political arm of the brotherhood) told the Daily News Egypt that the Congresswoman’s allegations are illogical and unsubstantiated. “Is the Brotherhood that powerful to influence the decisions and policy of the world’s greatest country?” El-Wesseimy asked. He added “even during Mubarak’s era when any foreign embassy or ministry wanted to convene with the Muslim Brotherhood, we made it clear that there will be no meetings without representatives from the Egyptian Foreign Ministry. Working in the shadows is unacceptable for us.”
El-Wesseimy said such allegations aim to distort the image of the Brotherhood and could only mean that a select group of American politicians do not want seek better relations with Arabs, especially Egypt. “We have our differences with the American administration regarding issues like the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and the situation in Iraq,” El-Wesseimy said. “The only relationship we have with the US is the normal political and diplomatic one that developed when the party’s candidate, Mohamed Morsy, became president.”
Bachmann has a history of false allegations, according to CNN television two years ago said one of President Barack Obama’s trips to India would cost tax payers $200 million a day, citing an Indian newspaper. The Indian report quoted an anonymous source who was supposedly an Indian official. The claim was proven to be false.