Here again we see that what the government and mainstream media are intent on ignoring and downplaying as a factor in the political turmoil of Egypt and elsewhere is identified by the group creating that turmoil as being what it is all about: Islam.
“Morsi supporters urge fight for Islam,” by Borzou Daragahi in the Financial Times, December 7:
Islamist backers of Mohamed Morsi are resorting to religious rhetoric to galvanise support for the Egyptian president as the country”s political stand-off showed little sign of resolution.
Supporters and opponents of Mr Morsi held competing mass rallies in Cairo on Friday, as opposition anger deepened over the president’s decision to strengthen his powers and rush through a new constitution.
Pro-government clergy took over the pulpit at al Azhar mosque, the country”s premier house of worship, and urged thousands of supporters of Mr Morsi to fight not for a president or a new constitution but for their religion.
“Now is the battle for Islam,” a Morsi supporter told thousands gathered at the mosque for the funeral for at least two members of the Muslim Brotherhood killed during street clashes with secular rivals this week. “Now is the time to fight for Islam.”…
State television reported clashes between supporters and opponents of Mr Morsi outside the al-Qaed Ibrahim mosque in Egypt’s second city of Alexandria. Opponents of the president burnt down offices of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice party, including its headquarters in southeastern Cairo and a large office in the Cairo suburb of Maadi. Gihad Haddad, adviser to Mr Morsi, said on his Twitter page that dozens of offices affiliated with the Brotherhood and its political party had been attacked in recent days.
Carrying the coffins of two Brotherhood members allegedly killed by opposition supporters during a chaotic street confrontation on Wednesday, Mr Morsi’s supporters at al-Azhar called for revenge.
“Don’t worry, the martyrs” blood won’t be spilled in vain. With God’s help we will conquer anyone who stands in our way and make the corrupt pay for what they did to the innocent,” a prayer leader announced to the Islamists gathered. “With our blood, with our souls, we will defend you, Islam.”
Mohamed Hamed, a 64-year-old Brotherhood supporter who attended the funeral service, said: “They”re attacking Islam and they”re getting support from Europe and other foreign countries. We”re praying for the people who were murdered by people sent by Baradei and [Hamdeen] Sabahi,” a leftwing-nationalist opposition leader.