Saudi scholar Mohasen Al-Awaji has caused controversy by saying he is prepared to appear on Israeli television.And why is that?
But even such a move as going on Israeli TV and telling Israelis how evil they are is way too liberal for others:
Interviewed on Al Arabiya news channel last week, Al-Awaji said that although he has not been invited by any Israeli TV channel he would be willing to appear purely to tell the Israeli viewing public about the threat posed by Zionism. He added that appearing on Israeli TV was the right move and would help counter Israeli propaganda.
“The aim is to expose the crimes the Zionists have committed. Debating with logic and evidence and using their media and appearing on their television channels will be effective and allow us to reach a wider audience. At the same time it will show the Zionists that we are willing to talk to them on their own ground,” he said.
There has been strong opposition to Al-Awaji’s offer. Other Saudi scholars fear that it will inevitably be seen as a step toward normalizing relations with Israel.So is Al-Awaji more liberal than Al-Nujami?
“What Al-Awaji has proposed is a great mistake,” said Dr. Mohammad Al-Nujaimi, a member of the International Islamic Fiqh Academy and professor of comparative Fiqh at the High Institute for Judicial Studies at Imam Muhammad bin Saud University in Riyadh. He said Al-Awaji’s call goes against all the fatwas the ulema have issued that normalization with Israel in all its forms — politically, economically, socially and in terms of media — “is not permissible at all.”
Al-Nujaimi said there could be no normalization of relations with Israel which, he said, has for many years broken all international agreements and sabotaged every peace initiative. He said that nothing will work with it except jihad, including boycotting all of its media networks and cultural activities.
Despite his willingness to appear on Israeli television, Al-Awaji told Arab News that he is impressed and delighted at the negative response. He said that it drove home the fact that the Arab and Muslim worlds “are not and never will be ready to have relationships with the Zionist body, and that this foreign body among us is not accepted, especially following its barbaric attacks on Gaza.”Notice that he doesn't say that "as long as Israel occupies..." or "as long as Israel oppresses..." or anything like that. The controversial scholar agrees 100% with his critics that Israel will never be accepted by the Arab world, no matter what it does.
But wishful-thinking Westerners will always cling to that absurd hope that if they only get Israel to make one more concession, then there will be peace.