Ahmadinejad in Egypt and the Shaykhs of Al-Azhar

Ahmadinejad is in Egypt right for the first visit by an Iranian head-of-state in decades. The shaykhs of Al-Azhar have shared their criticism of Iran’s regional policies with Ahmadinejad. They have expressed their concern with Iranian “meddling” in the Persian Gulf along with Iran’s support for the Assad dictatorship in Syria. Could the shaykhs of Al-Azhar be anymore sectarian? They support the Bahraini dictatorship in the face of pro-democracy protests only because the regime there is Sunni and the pro-democracy protesters are largely (though not exclusively) Shi’ites. And they support the uprising in Syria only because it is against a non-Sunni regime. What hypocrisy. I think it’s important to condemn dictatorships across the board, starting with the Persian Gulf sheikhdoms (emphasis SAUDI ARABIA). But I should not be so annoyed since nobody really cares what the shaykhs of Al-Azhar have to say. I mean, these are the same shaykhs that came out against the uprising in their own Egypt and then switched sides when it became apparent that the regime was falling. These are the same shaykhs that gave religious sanction to Egypt’s wars with Israel and then switched policies when the Sadat regime sought peace in the late 70s. They go in any direction the wind blows. Here’s the al-Jazeera video brief on the visit.

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