It’s been my long held view that senior administration officials can’t so much as crap without convening a “panel of experts” to produce a detailed report providing their guidance on how best to accomplish that goal. One such turd that has recently floated to the surface is the RAND corporation report entitled, “ The Muslim Brotherhood, It’s Youth, and the Implications for U.S. Engagement” aka “The Deception Handbook for U.S. / Muslim Brotherhood relations in a Post-American World”.
The RAND corporation’s National Defense Research Institute is a federally funded research and analysis center which is overseen by a Department of Defense advisory board in support of official administration policies and goals. Since my hard-earned tax dollars helped to pay for this report I was curious as to what sort of helpful advice RAND had produced as to the best way of dealing with the Muslim Brotherhood’s ongoing threat to American interests. After reading the study, I have got to tell you this is, without any doubt, one of the most psychologically manipulative efforts to alter the perceptions of the American public on a subject that I’ve ever heard of.
Since reading the report is an hour of your life you’ll never get back, I’ll give you a couple highlights from the reports recommendations.
Regularize and routinize engagement, including among members of Congress and FJP parliamentarians, to reduce politicization of engagement efforts. The more regular and normalized that contact becomes, the less engagement is vulnerable to becoming a target of political attacks in the United States and the more it will be viewed as the normal course of diplomacy…But trumpeting the policy is a mistake. Engagement can also be insulated from domestic political attacks by having more members of Congress, rather than just administration officials, directly meet MB members.
To improve and broaden communication and dialogue with such groups, U.S. officials can request and help facilitate American speakers for MB student union events and invite MB youth leaders to speak to American university audiences.
Promoting a strategy of engaging the brotherhood on its terms instead of our own, it melds well with the Obama administration’s policy of leading from behind in dealing with foreign policy issues. The report lives in that special liberal fantasy land where mutual engagement without any preconditions will result in brotherhood members moderating their radical views towards western nations and those of other religious beliefs. Moreover, its focus is on changing how America views the brotherhood instead of how they conduct themselves. The authors only connection with reality is that they recognize this doomed strategy needs to be quietly hidden from the public who would be otherwise outraged.
Finally I must point out that since RAND’s research on strategic marketing for radical islamists is freely available on their website, it is also available to the brotherhood as well as every other group (i.e. Hamas, Hezbollah, ect.) who wish to be seen as legitimate political players on the world stage, all courtesy of the U.S. taxpayer and the Department of Defense.
So my question to you dear reader is this. What came first, the chicken or the egg? Is foreign policy following the findings presented in this report or is the report crafted to support policy already in place? I’d love to hear what you think.