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Georgetown University is scheduled to host an event on Egypt that features a member of Egypt’s Nazi Party.
Georgetown University’s Prince Al Waleed Bin Talal Center for Christian Muslim Understanding is scheduled to host a Dec. 5 event on “Egypt and the Struggle for Democracy.”
The event features a slew of speakers sympathetic to the Muslim Brotherhood, as well as Coptic Christian Ramy Jan, who cut his teeth on the Egyptian political scene as a member of the country’s Nazi Party, according to multiple sources.
The event is scheduled to take place all day at Georgetown’s ICC auditorium and feature a keynote address by Rep. Keith Ellison (D., Minn.).
In addition to Jan, a who’s who of Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated speakers are scheduled to be flown in from Egypt to attend and participate in the forum, which includes multiple panel discussions about Egypt’s recent coup and the current state of the country’s democracy.
Egypt experts criticized both Georgetown and event organizers for holding an event that will primarily feature pro-Muslim Brotherhood propaganda under the guise of free and open discussion.
They also expressed surprise at the inclusion of Nazi Party member Jan, who was featured in a 2011 documentary on the Nazi Party’s “pursuit of world supremacy for the Egyptian race.”
“Several businessmen want to finance us, and we have to choose between them,” Jan told interviewers in Arabic, according to a translation of his remarks by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
“We do not recognize the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel,” Jan said before explaining his desire for Egypt to build a nuclear reactor.
“We want to build an Egyptian nuclear reactor—a reactor that will be built by Egyptians and will have Egyptian components,” he said. “All Egyptians will unite around this national project.”
Egypt’s Nazi Party is very small and comprised of only a few key members, including Jan.
Jan is featured in a promotional flyer for the event as a member of the little-known group, “Christians Against the Coup.”
Egypt experts dismissed the event as an attempt by Muslim Brotherhood supporters to push their agenda with the backing of a prominent American university.
“I think Georgetown has some serious questions to answer,” such as why are they providing a “platform for the Egyptian Nazi Party,” said the Hudson Institute’s Samuel Tadros, author of Motherland Lost: The Egyptian and Coptic Quest for Modernity.
“Out of 17 speakers, most of these people are members of the Muslim Brotherhood” except for the “one token Christian—and the one Coptic out of million of Copts who also happens to be a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood,” Tadros said.
“It’s remarkable to find such a guy,” he said. “Just by inviting him that tells us something about the nature of the conference and those organizing it.”
Most Coptic Christians supported the removal of Muslim Brotherhood-backed President Mohamed Morsi.
They also have been the victims of violence and vandalism in the months since Morsi was deposed by the Egyptian military.
“The vast majority of Copts, as well as the Coptic church itself, supported Morsi’s removal,” said Eric Trager, an Egypt expert at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP).
“So why would Georgetown hold a conference on Egypt in which the lone Coptic speaker opposed Morsi’s removal, especially when the conference features a number of Muslim Brothers and other Islamists who will also advocate a pro-Morsi position?” Trager asked.
“It should be emphasized that [Jan’s group] ‘Christians Against the Coup’ is a barely-known, peripheral movement,” Trager said. “So whoever chose its leader to speak at Georgetown must have been specifically looking for a Copt who opposed Morsi’s removal, rather than a Copt whose views are more representative of Egypt’s Christian community.”
Other featured speakers include Wael Haddara, a Canadian-based Muslim Brotherhood backer who formerly served as a senior adviser to Morsi; Abdel Mawgoud al-Dardery, a onetime member of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party who is now fighting against the coup; and Mohamed Abbas, an Islamist and longtime supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Other participants include Dalia Mogahed, who was picked by President Barack Obama to advise White House’s Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
Mogahed said on Twitter Tuesday that organizers of the event had no knowledge that Jan was a member of Egypt’s Nazi party.
“I can assure you the organizers had no idea about his ‘other baggage,’” she said.
When reached for comment Tuesday about the event, an official at Georgetown’s Alwaleed Center directed a reporter to contact event organizers at the Egypt Freedom Foundation, which did not respond to several requests for comment.
Hours after being contacted by the Free Beacon, the event organizers scrubbed his name from the event flyer and quietly reposted an altered version.
Christine Kidwell, the Alwaleed Center’s associate director, did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
Ellison’s spokesman Mike Casca also did not respond to a request for comment.