Thursday was not a particularly good one for James Clapper, U.S. Director of National Intelligence. Speaking to a House Intelligence Committee hearing, he weighed in on his thoughts on Egyptâ??s Muslim Brotherhood, describing it as a "largely secular" organization.
Even with a near-immediate clarification release from his office, Clapper's statement prompted derision of both the restrained and the angry variety. NBC's Richard Engel called it a "head snap" moment. Perhaps the mildest response I could find was Jake Tapper's comments on ABC News, stating simply: "The Muslim Brotherhood is quite obviously not a secular organization."
What we've learned over the past several months is that there is a sizable portion of people who would like to claim otherwise. Tom Joscelyn did a fairly thorough job of debunking Bruce Reidel's claims about the Brotherhood, and the Op-Ed from Brotherhood member Abdel Moneim Abou el-Fotouh on Wednesday has mostly fallen on deaf ears.