Many Westerners interpret Hamas’ hatred of Israel as the result of a struggle over land or the alleged cruelty and debasement of Israel’s occupation of Gaza (even though Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005). However, an important driver of this hostility is the Islamist ideology and strategy of the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Hamas is the Palestinian chapter. Although its antisemitism is rarely mentioned, it plays a crucial role in the Brotherhood’s ideology and strategy. There are several sources for this antisemitism.
First, the Koran and Muslim tradition contain various negative references to Jews. A famous prophecy states that “Judgement Day will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews. The Jews will hide behind the stones and the trees, and the stones and the trees will say, oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew hiding behind me – come and kill him.” This saying is often used as an incitement to violence and murder. Also, according to Islamic tradition, any land conquered by Muslims must always remain Islamic. The Jewish State of Israel, established on what had been part of an Islamic empire, represented to many Muslims a huge, humiliating defeat.
Second, Jihad (holy war) against the Jews is advocated by the Muslim Brotherhood. Established in 1928 in Egypt, it had only 800 members in 1936. Then, founder Hassan al-Banna encouraged the Brothers to join the Arab Revolt in Palestine. Although the revolt failed in its goal of stopping Jewish immigration into Palestine, it succeeded in another way. By 1938, Brotherhood membership had swollen to 200,000, and it had emerged as a mass organization.
Third, before, during, and after World War II, the Muslim Brotherhood concept of “Jew” or “Zionist” simultaneously grew to incorporate key aspects of Nazi antisemitism –unsurprisingly, given the Brotherhood’s collaboration with the Nazis. The Nazis attacked the Jews as enemies who were conspiring to achieve world domination. According to leading Brotherhood ideologist Sayyid Qutb: “the purpose [of World Jewry] is to eliminate all limitations … so that the Jews may penetrate into body politic of the whole world and then may be free to perpetuate their evil designs.” 
Antisemitism also shapes the Brotherhood strategy. The late Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, for decades the Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, proposed an approach called “the middle way.” He urged flexibility towards elements of modernity that attract women and youth. However, such flexibility could cause Muslims to lose sight of the Islamist goal of establishing a global caliphate under Islamic law or sharia. He needed a factor to mobilize people, to leave them dissatisfied, and he found it in hatred of Israel and the Jews. According to French anthropologist Florence Bergeaud-Blackler, as a critical part of this strategy, the Palestinian conflict is essential to mobilize Muslims in support of Islamist objectives. 
So, what does this have to do with non-Jews? According to the late historian Robert Wistrich, Islamists view eradicating Israel as a divine commandment and a necessary first step to “liberating” mankind.  The Brotherhood’s 1991 Explanatory Memorandum sets out what this means for the United States:
The Ikhwan must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house…
The face of the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States is the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). Self-advertised as a Muslim civil rights group, Steven Emerson of the Investigative Project on Terrorism notes that “it is through an obsessive, venomous focus on Israel that CAIR has sustained its lengthy record of antisemitic rhetoric.” In 2009, the Federal Bureau of Investigation suspended all formal contacts with CAIR due to its ties with Hamas. The prohibition had little effect, however, as CAIR remains a prominent political player: senior U.S. politicians, including Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), spoke at the 2021 fundraising banquet for CAIR’s Chicago chapter.
Nor does CAIR hide its anti-Israel bias, calling for an immediate ceasefire after Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel and accusing Israel of war crimes. “CAIR is fulfilling the role for which the Muslim Brotherhood founded it at the outset—to be apologists for terror, especially from Hamas,” stated Rabbi Yaakov Menken, managing director of the Coalition for Jewish Values.
As the case of CAIR shows, antisemitism is an integral part of Brotherhood ideology. It also acts as the accelerant of the fire that aims to destroy America. The protests and riots since October 7, 2023, in the United States and Western Europe offer a concrete and alarming example of how this works.
What can we do about this? Join the Middle East Forum’s campaign to defeat Hamas. Publicly expose the true nature of the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamic organizations. Reduce their governmental access, as I argue in Hidden Struggle: The Challenge of Sharia in the West, and deny them any public funding. Finally, stopping the funds from Qatar, Iran, Turkey, and others to the Muslim Brotherhood and their proxies in the Middle East, the US, and Europe, as suggested by Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, could also curb the Brotherhood’s influence in the United States, especially in American universities.
 Sayyid Qutb, Milestones (New Delhi: Islamic Book Service, 2007), p. 111.
 Florence Bergeaud-Blackler, Le frérisme et ses réseaux, l’enquête (Paris: Odile Jacob, 2023), pp. 122-26.
 Robert S. Wistrich, A Lethal Obsession: Antisemitism from Antiquity to the Global Jihad (New York: Random House, 2010), p. 6.