The Founders of the Egyptian Nazi Party went on television last week to proclaim that their recently formed political group will seek to achieve racial superiority, but they insist it will not be hostile to Jews.
As seen in a segment translated by MEMRI, the Egyptian TV host was skeptical, but the members of the Egyptian Nazi party insisted their message would resound with the Egyptian people.
The group stated that its primary purpose is to pursue, as they claim, "The supremacy of the Egyptian race. That's our number one goal."
What started out as a Facebook group after the uprising in Tahrir Square and the overthrow of Mubarak has now become an active political party with about 300 members.
One of the founders of the nascent fascist political movement told the interviewer:
"My vision for the future is that within 10 years, we will have representatives in the parliament, and the president will be one of ours as well. Our political goal is to make the Arab race, or Arabic speakers, the best race. They will be at the top level, and we will help to spread the Arabic language throughout the world."
"Adopted the positive aspects of the Nazi Party, not the negative. We will not carry out holocausts against the Jews, and we will not fight them. We have nothing to do with Hitler. The one and only thing we have adopted from Nazism is racial supremacy. That's it."
An attempt was then made to draw a false distinction between Israel and the Jews, as an Egyptian Nazi Party member stated that:
"We do not recognize the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel..[but] I am not hostile towards all the Jews. I am hostile towards the Zionist entity. The Zionist entity poses a danger to the Arabs, so I am hostile towards it."
And in an apparent desire to mirror the nationalism surrounding Iran's nuclear program, one of the fascist founders discussed how "We want to build an Egyptian nuclear reactor ... all Egyptians will unite around this national project."
There were even shades of Nasser-era Pan-Arabism in the televised interview, as one of the members said "I'd like the Arab world to unite, so that we become a united force, like the EU."
While it may be easy for some to dismiss the Egyptian Nazi Party as a group of misguided and ignorant fools, the political turmoil roiling the country could allow fringe ideologies to rapidly grow. The national socialist underpinnings of the Egyptian Nazi Party could resonate with Egyptians who remember or admire the statist socialism of Nasser's reign in the 1960's.
Nasser's Egypt shared basic political underpinnings with the Baa'th Party--which reigned supreme in Saddam Hussein's Iraq for decades and is still clinging to power in Assad's Syria. Ba'athism is a mishmash of Arab nationalism and socialism that quickly turned into a tool of mass oppression in both countries. Saddam Hussein's Ba'athist Iraq in particular bore structural and ideological similarities to Nazi party rule.
That ideological history, coupled with widespread anti-semitic sentiment and the recent attacks on the Israeli Embassy in Cairo, have created an environment where even a small group of Egyptian Nazi Party members have to be taken at their word, and watched cautiously.