Moslems' attitude towards Jews should be as ordained by the Quran. God
reveals in the Qur'an that Jews, like Christians, are part of the people
of the book. Moslems as well as Jews believe in the same God and follow
the examples set by the prophets sent by Him with due love and respect.
Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Moses, David and Solomon (peace be upon them all)
are as important to Moslems as they are to Jews. Moslems address the Jews
and the Christians as follows in the Qur'an: "We
believe in what has been sent down to us and what was sent down to you.
Our God and your God are one and we submit to Him." (Qur'an,
29:46) All forms of social relations between Moslems and Jews must be
within a framework of justice, peace and security, and Moslems' attitude
towards Jews must always be reconciliatory, forgiving and tolerant.
At various times in their history, Jews suffered oppression and genocide.
The main culprit behind such atrocities is anti-Semitic ideology, which
led to many tragic events in the 20th century. The true meaning
of the term is hatred of Semites, although it is generally understood
to mean hatred of Jews. It expresses a hatred for people of Semite descent
or the Semitic race. The underlying reason for this hatred for the Semitic
races is the hatred felt for the divine religions revealed to them. In
other words, Nazism's and other fascist movements' hostility towards Jews
is in reality a hatred of religion. Anti-Semitism is therefore a pagan
teaching that cannot be adopted by any Moslem. People who advocate and
incite anti-Semitism are often revealed to be people who also advocate
a return to idolatrous practices and war, who enjoy merciless bloodshed,
and who are uncontrolled and barbaric. Such people oppose the peace, modesty,
love and compassion of true religious morality taught by the prophets.
Moslems and Jews are on the same side against such tyrants. Islam aims
to bring justice to the world and condemns anti-Semitism, as it does all
forms of racism. Moslems support the right of the Jews, like all other
people, to live in peace and security. Moslem principles have throughout
the course of history guaranteed refuge in Moslem lands to Jews fleeing
persecution at various times. Jews exiled from Spain were welcomed by
the Ottoman Empire, and thousands of them settled down there. The anti-Semitic
sentiments often seen in Christian countries never developed on Moslem
soil. Jews and Moslems in Moslem lands have lived side by side in peace
and security for centuries. It was Islamic principles that created this
A Moslem must always bear these facts in mind in his thinking and behaviour
regarding Jews. However, Judaism and Zionism must be distinguished between.
The ideology of Zionism is principally responsible for the years of endless
conflict and war, bloodshed and tears in Palestine. However, Zionism
and its real plans are not well known in the West. Many people in the
West have been conditioned to believe that Zionism is an ideology which
advocates a homeland for the Jewish people and are therefore sympathetic
to this ideology, although the reality is altogether different.
It is true that Zionism seeks the creation of a homeland for Jews and
that Zionists work to that end. This struggle, however, is probably the
most unjustified, cruel and merciless ever waged. Zionism developed in
the 19th century to create a homeland for the Jews, and its adherents'
chosen land was Palestine, also regarded by Jews as their holy land. What
began as a legitimate and just cause turned into an ethnic cleansing and
ruthless colonising project that totally disregarded the native Moslem
Arab population. Zionist slogans such as "unpopulated
land for a landless people" were no more than misleading propaganda,
as the Jews were not homeless, nor was the land they sought unpopulated.
The migration movement to Palestine started by the Zionists was the beginning
of the chaos in the Middle East, as they drove people from their homes
and land instead of cohabiting with the native population.
Had the Zionist leaders ensured that the Jews they
brought to that land lived together in peace with the other peoples living
in Palestine, this chaos would not have erupted. They failed to
do that, however. Zionists totally disregarded the other religions and
nations, and aimed to bring a wide region, described by them as the Promised
Land, under their domination. They therefore resorted to the most ruthless
methods. Moreover, Zionism's ambitions are not just restricted only to
the Middle East. Zionism is an irreligious and racist ideology that seeks
world dominion and therefore represents a threat to world peace. The map
which Zionist ideology drew up for the Jews consisted of a very large
Theodore Herzl said in his speech at the Zionist congress
of 1897 in Basel that, "The northern frontier
is to be the mountains facing Cappadocia (Asia Minor), the southern, the
Suez Canal." (1) The founding father of
the Israeli state, David Ben Gurion, defined the purpose of Zionism as
The present map of Palestine was drawn by the British
mandate. The Jewish people have another map which our youth and adults
should strive to fulfill-From the Nile to the Euphrates. (2)
As we have seen, if Zionism really only aimed to secure a homeland for
the Jews it would be a justified movement. However, Zionism distanced
itself from that lawful demand by evolving into a colonialist and exploitative
In the same way that Islam rejects anti-Semitism, a racist ideology,
it also rejects Zionism, another racist ideology. It must not be forgotten,
however, that not all Jews are Zionists. Indeed, there are many Jews who
oppose the crimes against humanity of Zionism, fiercely criticise these,
maintain that Israel must immediately withdraw from all the occupied territories,
and wish Israel to be a free state in which all nations and identities
can live together as equals. As Moslems rightfully oppose Zionism, therefore,
they must bear these truths in mind and be aware that the criticisms are
aimed at Zionism, not at Jews. For someone to criticise and hurt innocent
Jews on account of the crimes of Zionism is a violation of justice. If
he condemns the various Jewish communities in the world on account of
the unjust occupation by and attacks of Zionism, he again contravenes
justice and commits a grave error. If he perpetrates terrorist actions
against those who support the aggression and occupations of Zionist ideology
and aims these at Israeli civilians, he turns away entirely from the path
of justice, and commits a grave sin by targeting innocent people.
It is revealed in the Qur'an that the Jews are a blessed people from
the line of the Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) and descended from
the worthy prophets of God. There is no doubt that the Jews' efforts to
migrate and build a homeland for themselves wherever they desire in the
world is a most lawful demand. For that reason, it is the Jews' most natural
right to wish to live in their own holy lands. Their ancestors lie buried
in these lands, which are of the greatest significance to them. Indeed,
God reveals in the Qur'an that He has settled the Jews in those lands
they live in:
They say, 'If we follow the guidance with you, we shall
be forcibly uprooted from our land.' Have We not established a safe haven
for them to which produce of every kind is brought, provision direct from
Us? But most of them do not know it. (Qur'an, 28:57)
As revealed in the verse, God has settled the Jews in these lands, and
Jews have the right to live freely on Palestinian territory, as do Moslems
and Christians. However, this objective, which was so far perfectly reasonable
and justified, lost that justification with the total disregard of the
Moslem Arab people living in Palestine. Zionism, which has turned into
a destructive ideology based on violence, has led to people being forced
out of their homes and land, which they had lived in for hundreds of years.
Those who have refused to leave their lands have been ruthlessly slaughtered.
That is what makes Zionism unlawful.