Egyptian Nazi Will No Longer Participate at Georgetown Conference
Georgetown University has come under fire for inviting a founder of the Egyptian Nazi Party to a conference planned for December on the future of Egypt, which will feature a keynote speech by Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota, the first Muslim member of the United States Congress, and Dalia Mogahed, a former adviser to President Obama.
The proposed speaker, Ramy Jan, was advertised as a representative of Christians Against the Coup, a little-known group opposed to Egypt’s military rulers. But in the months after the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak in 2011, Mr. Jan appeared on Egyptian television as a co-founder of the country’s nascent Nazi Party, a group with no real influence on Egyptian politics but with some startling ideas. As one member, Muhi al-Din al-Gamal, put it in the television interview, “Our political goal is to make the Arab race, or Arabic speakers, the best race.”
On Wednesday, John Esposito, the director of Georgetown’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, listed on the university website as the host of the conference, said that Mr. Jan would no longer be involved in the event. He said the center was alerted to Mr. Jan’s ties with the Nazi party after Eric Trager, an analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, raised the issue in a series of posts to Twitter.
“This was new to us that he had a background like that and as soon as it came to our attention he was immediately disinvited,” Mr. Esposito said. “We had no idea that there was this issue out there.”
Dalia Mogahed, a former adviser to President Obama in the Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, said on Twitter that she believed the organizers of the conference did not know about Mr. Jan’s ties with the Nazi party.