Former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates pointed out that Qatar has long welcomed the Muslim Brotherhood more than any other country in the region.
Gates stated, on Tuesday, at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy seminar that Qatar’s signing of the agreement with President Trump in Riyadh is not new, the same commitments were agreed upon before in 2014 to shut down Hamas accounts, or get out some figures, but the initiative never came from them.
During a discussion entitled “Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood's Global Affiliates: New US Administration Considers New Policies,” hosted by Fox News, Gates noted that the West before did not care about the Muslim Brotherhood's relationship with extremism and terrorism.
He stressed that the US needs to send an envoy to the Emir of Qatar with a list of activities that Qatar must stop supporting, otherwise the nature of its relationship with them will change.
The former Secretary of Defense spoke of Qatari relations with Washington during his post as defense minister from 2006 to 2011. He spoke about the media's hostility from Doha, while Qatar's neighbors in the region saw the media as a source of instability.
Gates said US President’s visit to Riyadh was a good start, stressing that Washington didn’t abandon the region. He stressed that the fight against terrorism is an important step to follow.
The Muslim Brotherhood was a "neglected target," they paved the ground that preceded the emergence of other movements like Al-Qaeda and ISIS; they are "shapeshifters" and "they will look like the way you want them to look like," he said.
He added that before the Arab Spring, the Muslim Brotherhood talked about democracy and freedom until they assumed power in Egypt through Mohammed Morsi and soon their true identity as extremists was revealed, the former US secretary of defense explained.
He stressed that America's allies must take action against these movements at home.