Said Ramadan

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Said Ramadan with the President of Pakistan, Ayub Khan

Said Ramadan (Arabic: سعيد رمضان‎‎; born April 12, 1926 in Shibin Al Kawm, Al Minufiyah, died August 4, 1995 in Geneva) was an Egyptian religious scholar, political activist and humanitarian, and one of the preeminent leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Said Ramadan (second from the right) in the Oval Office with US President Dwight D. Eisenhower and other Muslim leaders in 1953

He was the son-in-law of Hassan al-Banna, the Muslim Brotherhood's founder, and emerged as one of the brotherhood's main leaders in the 1950s. Ramadan was often accused by the Egyptian government of Gamal Abdul Nasser of being in the CIA's pay; after being expelled from Egypt for his activities, Ramadan moved to Saudi Arabia where he was one of the original members of the constituent council of the Muslim World League, a charity and missionary group funded by the Saudi government. From the 1950s, he was considered the Muslim Brotherhood's unofficial "foreign minister."[1] He reestablished branches of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia between 1956 and 1958. In 1958 he moved to Geneva, Switzerland, before finishing a dissertation at the University of Cologne in 1959. In 1961 he founded the Islamic Center in Geneva, a combination mosque, think tank, and community center.

From the 1950s, Ramadan enjoyed extensive support from the CIA, which saw him as an ally in the battle against communism; by the end of the 1950s, "the CIA was overtly backing Ramadan. While it's too simple to call him a US agent, in the 1950s and 1960s the United States supported him as he took over a mosque in Munich, kicking out local Muslims to build what would become one of the Brotherhood's most important centers – a refuge for the beleaguered group during its decades in the wilderness. In the end, the US didn't reap much for its efforts, as Ramadan was more interested in spreading his Islamist agenda than fighting communism."[2]

Said Ramadan was the father of Hani Ramadan and of the prominent scholar of Islam Tariq Ramadan. On 9 August 1995 Ramadan was interred next to his father-in-law Hassan al-Banna. The Said Ramadan Peace Prize is named in his honour.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Algar, Hamid (2002). Wahhabism: A Critical Essay. Oneonta, NY: Islamic Publications International. pp. 49–50. Its constituent council, which met for the first time in December 1962, was headed by the then chief mufti of Saudi Arabia, Muhammad b. Ibrahim Al al-Shaykh, a lineal descendant of Muhammad b. Abd al-Wahhab, and the presidency remains to this day vested in the Saudi chief mufti. Included among its eight other members were important representatives of the Salafi tendency: Sa'id Ramadan, son-in-law of Hasan al-Banna, ....Maulana Abu l-A'la Maududi .... Maulanda Abu 'l-Hasan Nadvi (d. 2000) of India. 
  2. ^ http://www.nybooks.com/daily/2011/02/05/washingtons-secret-history-muslim-brotherhood/
  3. ^ "Tariq Ramadan verlieh Scholl-Latour den "Dr. Said Ramadan Friedenspreis für Dialog und Völkerverständigung,"" [Tariq Ramadan gave Scholl-Latour the "Dr. Said Ramadan Peace Prize for dialogue and understanding between peoples"]. Islam.de (in German). 20 October 2008. Archived from the original on 24 October 2008.