Muslims Anti Zionists Not Jews: Qaradawi
|Friday, May 2,2008 13:32|
|By Mohammad Sabrah|
Prominent Muslim scholar Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi has denied any enmity between Muslims and Jews, asserting that Muslims are only opposed to the hostile, expansionist Zionist movement.
"There is no enmity between Muslims and Jews," Qaradawi, the president of the International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS), told visiting Rabbis from the anti-Zionist movement Neturei Karta.
He noted that for centuries Jewish citizens were living in peace and coexistence in Muslim countries.
"Jews were the wealthiest people in Egypt and many Muslim countries," Qaradawi told the three rabbis welcomed to his home in the Qatari capital.
Rabbi Aharon Cohen agreed.
"Jews encountered no problem living in Muslim countries."
Sheikh Qaradawi stressed that Muslims and Jews share common grounds as followers of two Abrahamic religions.
"Jews who believe in the authentic Torah are very close to Muslims," he pointed out.
"Followers of the two religions agree on many rituals and religious practices such as male circumcision, halal slaughtering, banning pork and prohibiting any statutes inside mosques and synagogues."
The prominent scholar noted that Muslims and Jews were subjected to the same persecution following the fall of the Islamic rule in Andalusia, now Spain.
He believes Muslims and Jews, as people who believe in one God, should join hands in fighting atheism, pornography, same-sex marriages and injustice.
A galaxy of prominent Muslim scholars and interfaith experts issue on Monday, February 25, an open letter for the world"s Jewish community calling for a dialogue to improve relations between Jews and Muslims.
Qaradawi stressed that relations between Muslims and Jews only strained with the emergence of Zionism and the establishment of Israel on the rubble of Palestine.
"Muslims are against the expansionist, oppressive Zionist movement, not the Jews."
The visiting rabbis, each sporting a badge reading "I"m a Jew not a Zionist", shared the same conviction.
"Judaism, which is based on the true teachings of Torah, does not recognize Zionism," said Rabbi Cohen.
"Torah and Judaism do not sanction occupation, killings and driving people from their homes."
Zionism is an international political movement that spearheaded the creation of a homeland for the Jewish People in Palestine.
On April 18, 1948, Palestinian Tiberius was captured by Menachem Begin"s Irgun militant group, putting its 5,500 Palestinian residents in flight. On April 22, Haifa fell to the Zionist militants and 70,000 Palestinians fled.
On April 25, Irgun began bombarding civilian sectors of the Palestinian city of Jaffa — the largest city in Palestine at that time, terrifying the 750,000 inhabitants into panicky flight.
On May 14, the day before the creation of Israel, Jaffa completely surrendered to the much better-equipped Zionist militants and only about 4,500 of its population remained.
Israel was created on the rubble of Palestine on May 15, 1948.
Rabbi Yisrael David Weiss, the spokesman of Neturei Karta, said Israel"s practices violate the teachings of Judaism.
Neturei Karta is dedicated to representing hundreds of thousands of Orthodox Jews around the world.
Its followers believe that only the establishment of an independent Palestinian state and the removal of Israel would bring peace to the Middle East.
"The Torah and the Jewish history tell that Israel one day will cease to exist," insists Rabbi Weiss.