THE HARDLINE REFORMIST
He’s one of the most intriguing faces of contemporary Islam.
As a former member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Houdaiby was for years firmly entrenched in the organization that has in recent times dominated a large part of the discourse in the Arab world.
Founded over 80 years ago by Hassan al-Banna at the end of World War 2, the Brotherhood started out as a social movement rather than a political organization – however in recent times it has gone on to be the largest political opposition in many Arab states.
Houdaiby’s family has always been firmly rooted in the Brotherhood. His great grandfather Hassan al-Houdaiby took over as 2nd General Guide of the Brotherhood when al-Banna was assassinated in 1949 while his grandfather went on to be the 6th General Guide, during the turbulent years of 2002-2004. As a revered judge, Hassan al-Houdaiby established a tradition of non-violent political engagement within Egypt and provided a definite counterpoint to the more revolutionary ideas of Said Qutb within the Brotherhood.
Which is why it sent ripples through the Brotherhood when Ibrahim quit his position as editor of the Brotherhood’s English website and has gone on to become one of the most clear-thinking voices in opposition of the movement in recent years.
Based in Cairo, Ibrahim is a freelance columnist and researcher focusing on democratisation, Islamic movements and development studies, Ibrahim holds a BA in Political Economy and a Masters in Political Science and Development Studies, apart from a diploma in Islamic Studies from the High Institue of Islamic Studies. Currently pursuing a Masters in Islamic Shariah, he lectures at AMIDEAST and is senior researcher at the House of Wisdom Center for Strategic Studies.