The US government has strongly rebuked remarks that President Mohammed Morsi of Egypt made about Jews in 2010. The White House and the State Department called on the Egyptian leader to repudiate what they called unacceptable rhetoric. Spokesmen for the Obama administration said on Tuesday that Morsi’s statements were ‘‘deeply offensive’’ and ran counter to the goal of peace in Middle East. The State Department said the remarks complicated American efforts to provide economic and military aid to Egypt.
"We believe that President Morsi should make clear that he respects people of all faiths and that this type of rhetoric is unacceptable in a democratic Egypt,’’ White House spokesman Jay Carney said, according to the ‘Associated Press’. “We completely reject these statements as we do any language that espouses religious hatred,’’ State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland added. ‘‘This kind of rhetoric has been used in this region for far too long. It’s counter to the goals of peace,” she declared.
As the chief of the Brotherhood’s political arm before becoming president, Morsi was one of the group’s most outspoken critics of Zionists and Israel. He sometimes referred to Zionists as “Draculas” or “vampires,” using language historically associated with anti-Semitism. Although he explicitly denigrates Jews in the recently exposed videos, Morsi and other political and Brotherhood leaders typically restrict their inflammatory comments to the more ambiguous category of “Zionists.”
"Nurse our children to hate Jews"
In a Lebanese television interview in 2010, Morsi described Zionists as “these bloodsuckers who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs.” Those statements came to light earlier this month when a translation of Morsi's speech were published by the Washington-based Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI). In the same interview, aired on ‘Al-Quds TV’ on 23 September 2010, he denounced the Palestinian Authority as a creation of "the Zionist and American enemies for the sole purpose of opposing the will of the Palestinian people." Therefore, he stressed: "No reasonable person can expect any progress on this track."
"Either [you accept] the Zionists and everything they want, or else it is war. This is what these occupiers of the land of Palestine know – these bloodsuckers, who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs," he went on to say, calling the Israelis "hostile by nature."
In video footage first broadcast Friday on an Egyptian television program, Morsi was shown addressing a rally in his hometown in the Nile Delta in 2010 to denounce the Israeli blockade of Gaza: “We must never forget, brothers, to nurse our children and our grandchildren on hatred for them: for Zionists, for Jews.” Egyptian children “must feed on hatred; hatred must continue. The hatred must go on for God and as a form of worshipping him,” he proclaimed. "The land of Palestine will not be freed except through resistance," he went on to say, praising Hamas as an extension of the Brotherhood.
"Who is our enemy? The Zionists. Who occupies our land? The Zionists. Who hates us? The Zionists. Who destroys our lands? The Zionists," Mr. Morsi added, lashing out at “America, France and Europe” as “Zionist” supporters. “And the last of them is that Obama,” he declared, calling the American president a liar who had promised the Arab world “empty meaningless words.”