The “hudna” that Muslims make with non-Muslims can never be more than temporary, and is entered into only because the Muslim side feels it is too weak to conduct open warfare, and would benefit from a respite from open hostilities. Alternatively, a Muslim polity may enter into a hudna with non-Muslims if it has a reasonable expectation that those non-Muslims will soon adopt Islam.
If the hudna is undertaken in order to give the Muslims time to gather their strength, then the Muslim side is then not merely allowed, but required, whenever it feels strong enough, to re-engage in open hostilities. And of course all during the period of the “hudna” it may conduct whatever operations not involving combat that it is capable of, including economic boycotts, diplomatic offensives, and suchlike — which is exactly what all Muslim states do engage in to weaken Israel, whether or not they are still in an official state of war, or have signed, as have Egypt and Jordan, so-called “peace treaties.”
This is not imagined. This is not a fabrication. This can be found by looking in any text of Muslim Law of War and Peace. It can be found, for example, by looking at Majid Khadduri’s authoritative text War and Peace in Islam. Fouad Ajami is the “Majid Khadduri Professor.” Yet Fouad Ajami has perhaps never understood, never cared to investigate, the Law of War and Peace in Islam about which Majid Khadduri (and a thousand others) wrote.
Why not? Why doesn’t the very fluent, and mediagenic, Fouad Ajami, recipient of Bradley Foundation prize money and a dozen other similar emoluments, who can appear whenever he wants in the pages of the Wall Street Journal, or on the Charlie Rose show, discuss — openly, soberly — the Muslim law governing all agreements and treaties with Infidels? Why doesn’t he simply quote Majid Khadduri, and explain that, as with so much in Islam, the relevant and governing model for such treaties is that made by Muhammad with the Meccans in 628 A.D., that agreement known by the name of the place where Muhammad and his followers stopped — the Treaty of Al-Hudaibiyya?
Why doesn’t Ajami do that? Why doesn’t someone — anyone — in the entire American government bring all this to the attention of those who have spent their lives so fruitlessly trying to engage in this “peace process” (unless they were indifferent or even hostile to Israel, as Brzezinski and Carter and William Odom and Scowcroft and James Baker all so clearly were and are)? This “peace process” has led finally to its current version, the Two-State Solution. And as I never tire of saying, it must be a solution because otherwise they wouldn’t have called it a solution, now would they? And this is the result after Kissinger Plans, and Rogers Plans, and silly Dennis Ross to-ing and fro-ing, and Clinton having Arafat as his most frequent foreign guest, and after the “Camp David Accords” that had Israel giving up tangibles — territory, infrastructure, oil fields, airbases, strategic depth — in return for promises almost immediately broken.
If all that were understood, and if the role of Islam in defining and determining the beliefs, the attitudes, the atmospherics that outlast even those who cease to believe, then a good deal of wasted motion and squandering of efforts, and not only in regard to the Lesser Jihad against Israel, might end. If all that were understood, attention could be focused, as it must be, on the need to stop pressuring other Infidel states (whether it be India, or a European country that might choose to deal more severely with the threats within). For that pressure is based on an ignorance, at times almost willful, of Islam.
Fouad Ajami could begin to discuss Islam. But he won’t. He can’t. And so his usefulness in the construction of an intelligent American foreign policy, one going beyond the local (i.e., Iraq, or the siege of Israel, or oil) to everywhere constrain and weaken the Camp of Islam, a usefulness which once might have appeared to be great, now declines precipitously. Ajami is, after all, merely a “cultural Muslim” himself, which is to say a “Muslim-for-identification-purposes-only” Muslim, but he cannot bring himself to announce even that openly, and cannot bring himself to fully enlighten the American public, or those who are his admirers in policy-making, on the One Big Subject that matters. His significance, for the right understanding of Islam, and thus for crafting policies that make sense by exploiting pre-existing weaknesses within Islam, diminishes day by day.