Although the Koran foresees the return of the Children of Israel to the land, for Muslims, the Jews have no historic right to the earth of their ancestors. Islam considers the Jews not the Bnei Israel (the original Jews), but converts by religion. For both Islam and Christianity, at least for the majority of their adherents, the Jewish religion was replaced by Christianity, and then Islam replaced Christianity.
When Islam refers to Jews as “People of the Book,” they are referring not to some ecumenical principle as liberals would have it. Rather, they are referring to the Jews as the first recipients of the word who then proceeded to falsify it, even though some glimmer of Islamic Truth can be seen through a glass darkly in Jewish texts.
For Hamas, Fatah, the Arab Sunni Muslims and the Shi’ite Iranians, “Israel, Judaism and Jews challenge Islam and the Moslem nation” by the simple fact of their existence (see the Hamas Charter, Art. 28).
The Jews are no longer in the physical and metaphysical inferior position as Islam would want them to be. The Almighty brought the Jews back to their land, including to Judea and Samaria at its center; roundabout the ramparts of Jerusalem. There is no tribute (djiziya) paid for protection against Muslim mobs, and the Jews are no longer in the inferior position of dhimmis (protected minorities or second-class citizens) in their own land. The repeated attempts to erase the State of Israel in 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973 were unsuccessful. The Jews won all those wars and the intifadas that followed.
Most Arab Muslims feel theologically and even emotionally humiliated because they can no longer humiliate the Jews. Muslims living in Judea and Samaria are required to show permits at checkpoints and are compelled to present an identity card to Jewish soldiers, including (supreme humiliation) to black Jewish soldiers, women Jewish soldiers and sometimes black women Jewish soldiers who give them orders. Their lost “dignity” or “honor” will come back only when they will be able once again to humble the Jews.
This is not just a psychological condition, but one of theological trauma that they have to overcome. The return of the Jews to their land challenges Muslims theologically, calls into question their respective roles in their interpretation of the Creator’s plan and what their civilization has brought to the world. How could one explain otherwise that 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide want to destroy Israel, a country of only 9 million (the size of state of New Jersey) and its 6 million Israeli Jews?
The “deal of the century” to include land for peace and billions of dollars will not end the religious/theological/metaphysical war. It will not stop the hate education in mosques and the media, as well as the present worldwide jihadi war. Money cannot buy Muslim beliefs. Giving more land and money to those criminals who are in Ramallah and elsewhere will make the Palestinian Authority more dangerous. It will give the Palestinians/Arabs/Muslims more strength to fight the Jews. The Israelis will not accept to surrender more land and risk their lives. They know what Oslo brought them.
Peace will come when the Jews say to the Muslims that they are the Jews of the Bible and of the Koran, and that all the land (on both sides of the Jordan River) belongs to them; that God has given the land to His people; that they have come back as foreseen by the Prophets and the Koran; that the Muslims should accept the Almighty’s will. Peace will come when U.S. President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Jared Kushner, Jason Greenblatt and other world leaders say the same.
Indeed, the return of the Jews to their land is in accordance to the prophets and the Koran: “And We [God] made a people [Children of Israel] considered weak (and of no account), inheritors of lands in both East and West [east and west of the Jordan River], lands whereon We sent down Our blessings.” (Koran, Surah A’raf, “The Heights,” 7: 137)
“And We said to the Children of Israel, ‘Dwell in the Land; and when the promise of the world to come comes to pass, We shall bring you en masse.” (Koran, Surah al-Isra, “The Night Journey,” Bani Isra’il, “Children of Israel,” 17:105)
Peace will come when the Jews will settle en masse in Judea and Samaria, in accordance to the Prophets and the Koran: “ … my people, enter the Holy Land which God has prescribed for you, and turn not back in your traces, to turn into losers.” (Koran, “The Table,” 5:21).
The religious war against the Jews and the non-Muslims should be tackled head on. The leaders of the world must have a road map to address the “Rapidly Metastasizing Crisis in the Islamic World” to prevent a World War III. Still, world leaders say that it has nothing to do with Islam, or that it merely represents a perversion of Islamic teachings.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi is aware of the reality. He clearly stated before Al-Azhar University in Cairo and the Awqaf Ministry (Religious Endowments) on Dec. 28, 2015, and in connection with Prophet Muhammad’s upcoming birthday: “We must take a long, hard look at the current situation. I have talked about this several times in the past…It is inconceivable that the ideology we sanctify … is hostile to the entire world. Is it conceivable that 1.6 billion [Muslims] would kill the world’s population of seven billion, so that they could live [on their own]? This is inconceivable. I say these things here, at Al-Azhar, before religious clerics and scholars. … Let me say it again: We need to revolutionize our religion. … Honorable Imam [the Grand Sheik of Al-Azhar], you bear responsibility before Allah. The world in its entirety awaits your words, because the Islamic nation is being torn apart, destroyed, and is heading to perdition. We ourselves are bringing it to perdition.”
On March 13, 2018, President Bouteflika of Algeria stated: “We must call the ulemas, religious authorities and centers of academic research to work for the renovation of religious discourse and its purification from diversions.”
Indonesians are aware that: “It is false and counterproductive to claim that the actions of Al-Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram and other such groups have nothing to do with Islam, or merely represent a perversion of Islamic teachings. They are, in fact, outgrowths of Wahhabism and other fundamentalist streams of Sunni Islam …” “For more than fifty years, Saudi Arabia has systematically propagated a supremacist, ultra-conservative interpretation of Islam among Sunni Muslim populations worldwide …”
Muslim religious and political leaders should be told that the hostilities against Israel and the non-Muslim world might lead to the War of Gog and Magog, of which the Kor’an says: “There is a ban upon any city that We have destroyed; they shall not be restored until Gog and Magog are unloosed, and they slide down out of every slope, and nigh has drawn the true promise, and behold, the eyes of the unbelievers staring: ‘Alas for us! We were heedless of this; nay, we were evildoers.’ ” (Koran, Sura Anbiyaa, “The Prophets,” 21:96-98, Arberry translation, p. 331, standard numbering: 21:95-97)
In this context, the Koran warns: “Upon the day when their faces are turned about in the Fire they shall say, ‘Ah, would we had obeyed God and the Messenger!’ They shall say, ‘Our Lord, we obeyed our chiefs and great ones, and they led us astray from the way. Our Lord, gives them chastisement two-fold, and curses them with a mighty curse.” (Koran, Sura Ahzab, “The Confederates,” 33:66, Arberry translation, p. 435, standard numbering: 33:66-7)
The Trump administration should totally review the draft of the “deal of the century” and go in another direction.
The writer was born in Tunis, Tunisia. An expert in international law, he was a member of the International Court of Arbitration representing Israel. He is the author of “The Middle East and World War III: Why No Peace?” with a preface by Col. Richard Kemp, CBE.
Note: This is the last of three articles on the topic of “Land for Peace.” Read Part I here and Part II here.
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