Monday, August 01, 2016

A recent MEMRI report establishes beyond all doubt that the Arab media are infested with rampant Islamophobia – at least by western standards of political correctness… But, speaking seriously, the lengthy report is absolutely worth reading in full. It consists of an introductory summary followed by excerpts (with commentary) of relevant articles authored by three Palestinian writers (two of them living in Britain), three Saudis, two Moroccans, one Jordanian and one Egyptian. 

Much of what these columnists write would not be considered fit to print by highbrow western media outlets. Consider this quote from an article in the London daily Al-Hayat, published on July 17, 2016 in the wake of the devastating terror attack in Nice a few days earlier. The Palestinian writer and academic Khaled Al-Hroub writes:

“Is terrorism attributed to religion related to the religion itself? The answer is yes, because the religion – any religion – is nothing but [a sum of all] explanations and interpretations of sacred texts by clerics... Religious interpretations that can easily be understood to mean that martyrdom means a cheap suicide [inside] a café or club frequented by ‘infidels’ are very common in our religious, educational, and mosque culture, and must be dealt with... What view [can] we develop regarding non-Muslims if every week we hear thousands of preachers call on Allah to ‘not leave a trace of them’? Every day, our sons [and presumably daughters, too? PMB] read texts and books in schools that establish nothing but a patronizing and disrespectful view regarding non-Muslims.”

What I find most remarkable in this passage is that Hroub doesn’t try to diminish the problem, but emphasizes that there are “every week … thousands of preachers” who promote bigotry and hatred as piety. To be sure, relevant material documented by MEMRI would seem to indicate that “thousands of preachers” may still be a somewhat conservative estimate for the entire Muslim world. Reading this MEMRI report I was reminded that about a year ago that, I discovered that even though the Al-Aqsa mosque is usually considered as Islam’s “third-holiest” place, nobody (i.e. no Muslim) seems to be offended that there are apparently fairly regular rants by “preachers” – including perhaps self-appointed ones – who spout the vilest bigotry and hatred imaginable. As I noted in a related post, there seems to be something like a Muslim version of Speakers’ Corner inside the Al-Aqsa mosque, where anyone – meaning, of course, any man – who feels like delivering a hate-filled rant against the Jews and the West can do so freely at Islam’s “third holiest” site. Men and young boys mull around, some stop to listen; but the reaction of the audience shows clearly that no one considers it unusual to come to this supposedly very sacred place of worship and hear sermons demonizing non-Muslims and exalting Islam as destined for the bloody – and divinely ordained – subjugation of the non-Muslim world. And of course, western media have no interest whatsoever in covering any of this, even though such coverage could arguably contribute greatly to a better understanding of one of the media’s favorite topics: Israel and the hostility the Jewish state faces from the Palestinians and the wider Arab and Muslim world.

But in a sense, none of this is really news: whatever a low-ranking or self-appointed preacher at the Al-Aqsa mosque’s Speakers’ Corner may say, similarly hate-filled sermons and teachings have also been given by Yusuf al-Qaradawi, one of the most influential Muslim clerics with an audience of many millions of Muslims worldwide. As Jeffrey Goldberg pointed out in a 2011 Atlantic article with the fitting title “Sheikh Qaradawi Seeks Total War,” an analysis of Qaradawi’s “Fatwas on Palestine” by Mark Gardner and Dave Rich shows “that this putatively moderate Islamic cleric argues clearly and consistently that hatred of Israel and Jews is Islamically sanctioned, and that the destruction of Israel is mandated by God.”  

Qaradawi has described the notorious hadith quoted in the Hamas Charter (i.e. “The last day will not come unless you fight Jews. A Jew will hide himself behind stones and trees and stones and trees will say, ‘O servant of Allah – or O Muslim - there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him’”) as “one of the miracles of our Prophet,” and he has calmly explained:

“[W]e believe that the battle between us and the Jews is coming ... Such a battle is not driven by nationalistic causes or patriotic belonging; it is rather driven by religious incentives. This battle is not going to happen between Arabs and Zionists, or between Jews and Palestinians, or between Jews or anybody else. It is between Muslims and Jews as is clearly stated in the hadith. This battle will occur between the collective body of Muslims and the collective body of Jews i.e. all Muslims and all Jews.”

In the meantime, it has apparently dawned on some Arab-Muslim commentators that Qaradawi’s widely  accepted militancy on all things to do with Jews is backfiring:

“Sheikh Al Qaradawi permitted the use of suicide bombing as a defensive tactic against Israel […] Practically speaking, though, the fatwa has had far wider consequences. It has been used by extension to justify suicide bombing against fellow Muslims. Of course, Al Qaeda and other extremists have no shortage of fatwas to vindicate their practices. But the danger of fatwas issued by otherwise moderate clerics is that they normalise suicide bombings, regardless of the circumstances.”

So even for Muslims it seems to be true that “[the] hate that begins with Jews never ends with Jews.”
Which brings me back to the MEMRI report that cites a Saudi (!) writer who thinks that terror groups like the Islamic State (ISIS) do have quite a bit to do with Islam:

“Today, it is more urgent than ever to renew the [Islamic] religious discourse in form, content, and goals... since Muslims have become confused, as many issues that were once considered uncontroversial principles are now banned in accordance to the norms set by the modern world, such as slavery for prisoners of war, offensive jihad, and so on.”

Among the “many issues that were once considered uncontroversial principles” is arguably also the Jew-hatred reflected in the notorious hadith that is quoted in the Hamas Charter, and that Qaradawi wants to uphold so faithfully. The problem is that this is a saying attributed to Muhammad himself, and given that Islam’s founder fought local Jewish tribes, it is perhaps all too easy to imagine that he projected his own troubles with the Jews to the end of history. This touches on what is arguably the fundamental problem of Islam: that it is a religion founded by a person whom Muslims revere as the most perfect man who ever lived – giving Muhammad in fact a Jesus-like status (minus the idea that he was God’s son) – but who was also a warlord who founded a rapidly expanding and immensely successful empire.

I expect that some of the related problems are addressed in Shadi Hamid’s new book on “Islamic Exceptionalism” – a book I’ve bought but not yet read; though on the basis of what I’ve read about it, I’m doubtful that I will agree with Hamid that “‘Islamic exceptionalism’is neither good nor bad. It just is.” I’m afraid that at least for our time, I can see plenty of evidence to support the conclusion that “Islamic exceptionalism” is pretty bad.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.

EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz



follow me

Follow by Email


Share on Whatsapp


For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts Ever


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!



The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

Omri: "Elder is one of the best established and most respected members of the jblogosphere..."
Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

Interesting Blogs


Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria American Jews Amnesty analysis anti-semitism antisemitism apartheid arab refugees Arafat archaeology art ASHREI B'tselem bahrain Balfour bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz book review Brant Rosen breaking the silence Campus antisemitism Cardozo Chakindas Chanukah Christians circumcision Clark Kent Community Standards conspiracy theories Cyprus Daled Amos Daphne Anson David Applebaum Davis report DCI-P Divest This double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada Embassy EoZ Trump symposium eoz-symposium EoZNews eoztv Erekat Erekat lung transplant EU Euro-Mid Observer European antisemitism Facebook jail Fake Civilians 2014 Farrakhan Fatah featured Features fisking flotilla Forest Rain Forward free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros German Jewry gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian guest post gunness Haaretz Hadassah hamas Hamas war crimes Hananya Naftali hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hasby 2018 hate speech Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor huor Hypocrisy ICRC IDF Ilan Pappe impossible peace incitement Indonesia international law intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Joseph Massad Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Judean Rose Kairos Karl Vick Keith Ellison ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Lebanon leftists Linda Sarsour Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Malaysia max blumenthal Mazen Adi McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Michael Ross Miftah Missionaries moderate Islam Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco Mudar Zahran music Muslim Brotherhood Nakba Nation of Islam Natural gas Nazi Netanyahu News nftp NGO NIF Noah Phillips norpac NYT Occupation offbeat Omar Barghouti Only in Israel Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peace Now Peter Beinart Petra MB poetry Poland poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist Puar Purim purimshpiel Putin Qaradawi Qassam calendar Quora Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals reference Richard Falk Richard Silverstein Right of return Rivkah Lambert Adler Robert Werdine rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Rutgers Saeb Erekat Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shujaiyeh Simchat Torah Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Speech stamps Superman Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman TOI Trump Tunisia Turkey UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc UNICEF United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA unwra Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks work accident X-washing Y. Ben-David Yemen YMikarov zahran Ziesel zionist attack zoo Zvi

Blog Archive