Events in the Middle East over the weekend and this morning are a sign of the growing Islamization of Egypt and the West Bank. The Egyptian vote over the weekend on constitutional amendments (which call for governmental elections to take place before most parties have a chance to get organized) was a resounding victory for the Muslim Brotherhood–which is now projected to win 40% of the vote when governmental elections take place. The central planks in in the Brotherhood’s drive for power are scrapping the peace treaty with Israel, embracing Hamas, and demonizing the United States. Immediately following up on the heels of its weekend victory, the Brotherhood called this morning for the establishment of a Saudi-style modesty police to combat “immoral” behavior in public areas. So much for democracy in Egypt.
On the West Bank today where the Palestinian Authority is engaged in an effort to unite with Islamic Hamas, an event in Jenin (where Hamas is already entrenched) should give pause for thought. Israeli-Arab actor Juliano Mer-Khamis, a 52 year old internationally famous pro-Palestinian activist was gruesomely shot to death as he stepped out of his car in Jenin. While his young son watched, Islamic gunmen fired numerous bullets into his body at point-blank range. What was the crime of Juliano Mer-Khamis? He operated a theater named “Freedom” which had become one of Jenin’s main cultural centers, showing movies about such subjects as the plight of ‘refugees’ and women in Palestinian society. Islamists had warned him numerous times to close the theater, and it was at the entrance to that theater that he was slaughtered. So much for freedom in the West Bank.