The Islamic Salafi group’s massive invasion of Tahrir Square July 29th was the result of a planned strategy. It was reported (almasry-alyoum, 8/1/2011) that the Salafi group began to transport supporters from different parts of Egypt by bus three days in advance of Friday, which was designated as the “United Front”. All organizations, including the Muslim Brotherhood and various Salafi Islamic groups, agreed in advance that no religious signs would be carried and that the emphasis would be placed on implementing the January 25th Revolution demands that have not been fulfilled.
Instead, the Salafi group disregarded the agreement and after the noon prayer, Tahrir Square was filled with people carrying religions signs with various slogans such as “There is no God but God and the secularists are the enemy of God”, “Raise your head high you are a Muslim” and “The people want the application of the Sharia Law”.
There were many more of these signs, which I saw on TV, in addition to the use of loud speakers to shout Islamic Salafi slogans. The press estimated the Salafi group in Tahrir Square to be close to half a million people. Furthermore, it was also reported that the Salafi were carrying the Saudi flag, which I think was a disgraceful act, regardless of the intention behind it. Was it a sign to let the Saudi Wahabi religious group know that their reported financial support of religious groups in Egypt is paying off?
Let me emphasize one point as a foreign observer who was an eyewitness to the January 25th Revolution: it was the young Egyptians who initiated the revolution and they are still its backbone. It was not the Salafi group or even any Islamic organized group who initiated the revolution; they were late participants in it.
Some organized Egyptian groups are asking the Egyptian Higher Military Council to investigate the Saudi flag raising in Tahrir Square to find out who is behind it. It is no secret that the Saudi government is doing its utmost to prevent the spread of the spring revolution into the Gulf area. The success of the Egyptian revolution will have a very positive impact on the rest of the Arab world. Nevertheless, there are still many authoritarian dictatorship regimes that are suppressing their own people and have gone to the extreme by turning their guns against the citizens to prevent them from challenging their authority.
The killing of thousands of peaceful protestors in Yemen, Syria and Libya reflects the brutality of Arab dictatorship. Nevertheless, Islamic Salafi groups are conducting their own type of war. As Sheikh Mohamed ala-il deen Abou-alazaim, the founder of the Egyptian Tahrir party and the leader of the Sufi alazmia said, the Salafi religious philosophy is an extension of the Wahabi religious dogma that does not accept other points of view besides their own and such thinking reflects that they are narrow-minded. They view Sufi and Christians as pagans and heretics. (al-masry-alyoum, 8/1/2011).
The Egyptians Islamic Salafi group is an extension of the Saudi Wahabi group, who are close-minded religious fanatics and who use their financial resources to extend their umbrella of ignorance under the pretext of Islam.
The Egyptian writer and historian Mahmoud Ismail, who is a specialist in Islamic history and civilization, attacked the Islamic brotherhood and called them opportunists. He also referred to the Salafi group, which is under the thumb of the Wahabi group. (al-masry-alyoum, 7/27/2011).