MEMRI has published extracts from sermons in Palestinian mosques over the last three years. Anyone wanting real answers to hoary questions such as Why Do They Hate Us? and How Do They See Us? should read this material carefully.
Says compiler Steven Stalinsky: “Each Khatib (preacher) is a paid employee of the Palestinian Authority (PA). The sermons are broadcast live every Friday at noon from mosques under control of the PA and are shown on PA television.” He lists the sermons’ common themes, including “calls for the destruction of the U.S., the perceived American Crusader war against Islam, honoring Shahids and the rewards of the martyrs, educating children to martyrdom, and antisemitism, including calls for the killing of Jews.”
A few extracts:
“Allah willing, this unjust state will be erased – Israel will be erased; this unjust state, the United States, will be erased; this unjust state, Britain, will be erased.” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi
“Allah, destroy the U.S., its helpers and its agents. Allah, destroy Britain, its helpers and its agents. Allah, prepare those who will unite the Muslims and march in the steps of Saladin. Allah, we ask you for forgiveness before death, and mercy and forgiveness after death. Allah, grant victory to Islam and the Muslims…” — Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories, Sheikh Ikrimeh Sabri
“Allah the almighty has called upon us not to ally with the Jews or the Christians, not to like them, not to become their partners, not to support them, and not to sign agreements with them… Allah, deal with the Jews, your enemies and the enemies of Islam. Deal with the Crusaders, and America, and Europe behind them…” — Dr. Ahmad Abu Halabiya
I know that some Palestinian Christians are aware that they are included in this group. I also know that some aren’t.
“If, God forbid, something happens to Iraq, the aggression and the Crusade will turn tomorrow against the Koran… God forbid, his second assault is on the Koran, [he wants] to change verses and to mess with Allah’s book, to Americanize the region, Americanize the religion, Americanize the Koran, Americanize Muhammad’s message… To my brothers in Iraq, to the President of Iraq, to the Iraqi leadership, to the Iraqi people… Strike, my brother; may your right arm, oh proud Iraq, be strong… strike Allah’s enemies with it. Strike with it the enemies of humanity… from the pulpits of Al-Azhar and other mosques around the world, that any Muslim who does not stand by Iraq and support it against the American-British-Crusaders cruel attack… Allah, grant victory to the Iraqi army… Allah, defeat America and its allies… Allah, purify the Islamic soil from the American and British treason and defilement… Allah, make their possessions a booty for the Muslims, Allah, annihilate them and their weapons, Allah, make their children orphans and their women widows…” — Sheikh Muhammad Abu Al-Hunud
“If we go back in the time tunnel 1400 years, we will find that history repeats itself… Byzantium represents America in the west… America will collapse, as Byzantium collapsed in the west… The Prophet [Muhammad] could, by means of unbroken ranks, conquer Byzantium, the greatest power compared to today’s America – and this without a single martyr falling from among the Muslims… The Prophet could, by means of the unity of the Muslim ranks and its awakening, defeat the America of that time, as we will defeat America as long as it supports our enemy, as long as America insists on being against our people and against our cause and our holy places, and against our people and our leadership… Indeed, we consider America to be our No. 1 enemy… America is our No. 1 enemy, and we see it as our No. 1 enemy as long as we learn from the lessons of the Battle of Tabouk [which took place in October 630 AD] :’Make ready for them whatever you can of armed strength and of mounted pickets’ [Koran 8:60]. We are prepared and ready, but victory is from Allah…” — Sheikh Ibrahim Mudeiris
“[Even when] a martyr’s organs are being chopped off, and he turns into torn organs that spread all over, in order to meet Allah, Muhammad, and his friends, it would not be [considered] a loss… This is the honor given to our martyrs, the martyrs of the Islamic nation, who were killed due to their loyalty to Allah… The sacrifice of convoys of martyrs [will continue] until Allah grants us victory very soon. The willingness for sacrifice and for death we see amongst those who were cast by Allah into a war with the Jews, should not come at all as a surprise… Oh believing brothers, we do not feel a loss… The martyr, if he meets Allah, is forgiven with the first drop of blood; he is saved from the torments of the grave; he sees his place in Paradise; he is saved from the Great Horror [of the day of judgment]; he is given 72 black-eyed women; he vouches for 70 of his family to be accepted to Paradise; he is crowned with the Crown of glory, whose precious stone is better than all of this world and what is in it…” — Sheikh Isma’il Aal Radhwan
Sheikh Isma’il is speaking, of course, of the kind of martyrs who commit murder and are killed in the process.
“Blessings to those who wage [Jihad] with their body… Blessings to our Shahids who sacrifice their souls easily for the sake of Allah… Blessings to the happy Shahids within the entrails of the green bird in Paradise. Blessings to the Shahids whose sins are forgiven with the first drop of their blood.” — Sheikh Ibrahim Mudeiris
“Know that a Shahid [who falls] on this land is considered more than one Shahid someplace else. Yes, there are traditions that a Shahid here [in Jerusalem] is worth 70 Shahids in a place other than this good land…” — Sheikh Ibrahim Mudeiris
“We tell them: in as much as you love life – the Muslim loves death and martyrdom. There is a great difference between he who loves the hereafter and he who loves this world. The Muslim loves death and [strives for] martyrdom. He does not fear the oppression of the arrogant or the weapons of the blood-letters. The blessed and sacred soil of Palestine has vomited all the invaders and all the colonialists throughout history and it will soon vomit, with Allah’s help, the [present] occupiers.” — Sheikh Ikrimeh Sabri
“A young man said to me: ‘I am 14 years old, and I have four years left before I blow myself up’… We, the Muslims on this good and blessed land, are all – each one of us – seekers of Martyrdom… The Koran is very clear on this: The greatest enemies of the Islamic nation are the Jews, may Allah fight them… Blessings for whoever assaulted a soldier… Blessings for whoever has raised his sons on the education of Jihad and Martyrdom; blessings for whoever has saved a bullet in order to stick it in a Jew’s head…” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi
“Shame and remorse on whoever refrained from raising his children on Jihad… Blessings to whoever waged Jihad for the sake of Allah; blessings to whoever raided for the sake of Allah; blessings to whoever put a belt of explosives on his body or on his sons’ and plunged into the midst of the Jews, crying ‘Allahu Akbar, praise to Allah, There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His messenger’… Allah, show us a black day for the Jews, like the day of ‘Aad and Thamud.  Allah, turn them into pillage for us. Allah, we strive for martyrdom for your sake…” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi
“I feel the martyr is lucky because the angels usher him to his wedding in heaven. I feel the earth moves under the occupiers’ feet… There is no doubt that a child [martyr] suggests that the new generation will carry on the mission with determination. The younger the martyr – the greater and the more I respect him… They [mothers of martyrs] willingly sacrifice their offspring for the sake of freedom. It is a great display of the power of belief. The mother is participating in the great reward of the Jihad to liberate Al-Aqsa… I talked to a young man… [who] said: ‘… I want to marry the black-eyed [beautiful] women of heaven.’ The next day he became a martyr. I am sure his mother was filled with joy about his heavenly marriage. Such a son must have such a mother.” — Mufti Sheikh Ikrimeh Sabri
“Palestine will be, as it was in the past, a graveyard for the invaders – just as it was a graveyard for the Tatars and to the Crusader invaders, [and for the invaders] of the old and new colonialism… A reliable Hadith [tradition] says: ‘The Jews will fight you, but you will be set to rule over them.’ What could be more beautiful than this tradition? ‘The Jews will fight you’ – that is, the Jews have begun to fight us. ‘You will be set to rule over them’ – Who will set the Muslim to rule over the Jew? Allah… Until the Jew hides behind the rock and the tree. But the rock and tree will say: ‘Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, a Jew hides behind me, come and kill him.’ Except for the Gharqad tree, which is the tree of the Jews. We believe in this Hadith. We are convinced also that this Hadith heralds the spread of Islam and its rule over all the land… Oh Allah, accept our martyrs in the highest heavens… Oh Allah, show the Jews a black day… Oh Allah, annihilate the Jews and their supporters… Oh Allah, raise the flag of Jihad across the land… Oh Allah, forgive our sins…” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi
“All spears should be directed at the Jews, at the enemies of Allah, the nation that was cursed in Allah’s book. Allah has described them as apes and pigs, the calf-worshipers, idol-worshipers… Whoever can fight them with his weapons, should go out [to the battle]; whoever can fight them with a machinegun, should go out; whoever can fight them with a sword or a knife, should go out; whoever can fight them with his hands, should go out; This is our destiny… The Jews have exposed their fangs. Nothing will deter them, except the color of their filthy people’s blood; nothing will deter them except for us voluntarily detonating ourselves in their midst. They have nuclear power, but we have the power of the belief in Allah… We blow them up in Hadera, we blow them up in Tel Aviv and in Netanya.” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi, referring to the Qur’an’s Suras 2:62-5, 5:59-60, and 7:166
“Oh beloved of Allah… One of the Jews’ evil deeds is what has come to be called ‘the Holocaust,’ that is, the slaughter of the Jews by Nazism. However, revisionist [historians] have proven that this crime, carried out against some of the Jews, was planned by the Jews’ leaders, and was part of their policy… These are the Jews against whom we fight, oh beloved of Allah. On the other hand, [what is our belief] about the Jews? Allah has described them as donkeys.” — Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi
“Oh Muslims, oh brothers, believers, everywhere, our Prophet used to deal in Friday’s sermons with current events of his time and I will follow him and also discuss some religious rulings connected to the current international events following the [attacks] that took place in America on the 11th of this month. First, there is a religious legal rule that man is innocent, namely, in Islam, a human being is innocent until he is proven guilty. It is not allowed to blame a human being and then tell him ‘prove you’re innocent.’ Therefore we tell America: ‘It is forbidden to accuse a person before the beginning of the investigation.’ Until now, the American administration could not present proof to convict the accused in the [attacks] in New York and Washington, [because] it is possible that there are other elements inside America who carried out these [attacks].” — Mufti Sheikh Ikrimeh Sabri
Here’s Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes with Arafat:
“[To Arafat]: Your state-controlled television carried a sermon by a sheikh telling worshippers that martyrs will go to paradise and marry 70 beautiful virgins. Do you believe that’s a correct interpretation of the Koran?
“Arafat: I am not now in a position to translate for you what had been mentioned in our Koran.”
Hanan Ashrawi played dodgeball with Tony Snow:
“Tony Snow: What I would like to do is read to you just a few statements that appeared on Palestinian TV on August 3 of this year, in a sermon broadcast over the television network, here is the quote: ‘All weapons must be aimed at the Jews… Whom the Koran describes as monkeys and pigs. Whoever can fight the Jews with his weapons should go out to the battle; whoever can fight with a machine gun should go out; whoever can fight with a sword or knife should go out; whoever can fight them with his hands should go out… Nothing will deter them, except the color of their filthy people’s blood; nothing will deter them except for us voluntarily detonating ourselves in their midst.’ That is from Sheikh Ibrahim Madhi. Now, the question is, that being on your national TV, should people not view that as an endorsement of those tactics?
“Hanan Ashrawi:Well, frankly, I haven’t heard this sermon, but had it been actually said, I certainly question the sources, but had it been broadcast, certainly I would condemn it.
“Tony Snow: We understand that, as a matter of fact, hate language is used by both sides. The unusual factor here is that it is on a television channel that you and the Legislative Council and Yasser Arafat control. You’re responsible for the content…
“Hanan Ashrawi: No we don’t control it.
“Tony Snow: You don’t control your own television network?
“Hanan Ashrawi: No, no. There is no censorship or control on those and I never heard this speech, and I will have to take your word for it, although I would like to know your sources.”