Islamic anti-Semitism is indeed not based on race or color. It’s based on religion. The Qur’an puts forward a clear, consistent image of the Jews: they are scheming, treacherous liars and the most dangerous enemies of the Muslims. Allah gave food laws to the Jews because of their “wrongdoing,” and for “for their averting from the way of Allah many [people]” (4:160), and by doing so, “repaid them for their injustice” (6:146). Some Jews are “avid listeners to falsehood” who “distort words beyond their [proper] usages.” These are “the ones for whom Allah does not intend to purify their hearts,” and they will be punished not just in hellfire but in this life as well: “For them in this world is disgrace, and for them in the Hereafter is a great punishment” (5:41). Jews dare to deny divine revelation, claiming that “Allah did not reveal to a human being anything,” to which Muhammad is told to respond, “Who revealed the Scripture that Moses brought as light and guidance to the people? You [Jews] make it into pages, disclosing [some of] it and concealing much” (6:91).
In light of all this, it is understandable that Muslims should not get close to such people: “O you who have believed, do not take the Jews and the Christians as allies. They are [in fact] allies of one another. And whoever is an ally to them among you – then indeed, he is [one] of them. Indeed, Allah guides not the wrongdoing people” (5:51). Ultimately, Allah transforms disobedient Jews into apes and pigs (2:63-66; 5:59-60; 7:166). In line with this, the practice of calling the Jews of today “apes and pigs” has become a staple of jihadist discourse. And while the Qur’an says that Muslims are the “best of people” (3:110), “they who disbelieved among the People of the Scripture and the polytheists will be in the fire of Hell, abiding eternally therein. Those are the worst of creatures” (98:6). They are “like livestock” (7:179). “Indeed, the worst of living creatures in the sight of Allah are those who have disbelieved, and they will not [ever] believe” (8:55). The Jews, according to the Qur’an, wantonly killed the prophets Allah sent to them (2:61; 2:87; 2:91; 3:21; 3:112; 3:181; 3:183; 4:155; 5:70). The Qur’an depicts the Jews boasting that “we killed the Messiah, Jesus the son of Mary” (4:157). Yet the same verse goes on to say that they did not kill or crucify Jesus, but only thought they did. The Jews, according to the Qur’an, are prone to war – especially against Muslims. Whenever the Jews “kindle the fire of war,” says the Qur’an, “Allah doth extinguish it” (5:64). The Jews also “strive to do mischief on earth” – that is, fasaad, for which the punishment is specified in 5:33: “they will be killed or crucified, or have their hands and feet on alternate sides cut off, or will be expelled out of the land.” The rebellion against Allah that has resulted in the Jews’ degradation – the “terrible agony” that those who have rejected Islam are to feel “in this world” as well as in the next (3:56) – is a frequent preoccupation of the Qur’an. Departing from his earlier tendency to appeal to the Jews as the authorities on what Allah had revealed, Muhammad began to criticize them for concealing parts of that revelation. The Qur’an several times criticizes Jews for refusing to follow Muhammad, asking, “Why don’t the Jews’ rabbis stop their evil behavior?” (5:63). In a particularly egregious transgression, the Jews even dare to say that “Allah’s hand is fettered” (5:64).
Yet the Jews need not suffer their fate passively, for the Qur’an offers them a way out. The one thing the Jews can do to get back into Allah’s good graces is to convert to Islam (2:43). This might sail right by the English-speaking reader, since the translations exhort them to be “steadfast in prayer” and to “practise regular charity” (as Abdullah Yusuf Ali has it), but in Arabic the word used here for prayer is salat, and for charity zakat; these refer specifically to Islamic prayer and almsgiving. Non-Muslims cannot pray salat or pay zakat. Ibn Kathir is forthright about the need for this conversion: Allah “commands the People of the Book to be with, and among the Ummah of Muhammad.” Likewise, Sayyid Qutb observes that here Allah “invites the Israelites to join the Muslims in their religious practices, and to abandon their prejudices and ethnocentric tendencies.”
Islamic tradition is no kinder to the Jews. Ibn Kathir notes Islamic traditions that predict that at the end of the world, “the Jews will support the Dajjal (False Messiah), and the Muslims, along with ‘Isa [Jesus], son of Mary, will kill the Jews.” And, of course, the most notorious anti-Semitic passage among very many is the one in which Muhammad is made to prophecy that Muslims will bring about the End Times by killing Jews wholesale: “The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim, or the servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him; but the tree Gharqad would not say, for it is the tree of the Jews’” (Sahih Muslim 6985).
“MSNBC: Professor claims anti-Semitism in the Middle East doesn’t exist,” by Samantha Reinis, Campus Reform, August 6, 2014 (thanks to CJ):
According to American University professor Hillary Mann Leverett, anti-Semitism doesn’t exist in the Middle East.
The Senior Adjunct Professorial Lecturer at the School of International Service recently appeared on MSNBC and claimed that since she has personally seen a Jewish hospital and kosher restaurants in Iran, the idea that anti-Semitism exists in the Middle East is false.
“That doesn’t exist in the Middle East. There’s no history of that in the Middle East.” Tweet This
“There is not this deep-seated Arab-Jewish or—you know, Muslim-Jewish animosity. There’s not an anti-Semitism in the Middle East the way that there was in Europe, which is based on race; which is based on color; which is based on genes and biology,” Leverett said in her segment on Melissa Harris-Perry. “That doesn’t exist in the Middle East. There’s no history of that in the Middle East.”
The top 10 worst countries for anti-Semitism among inhabitants include: the West Bank and Gaza, Iraq, Yemen, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Jordan.
Public figures from the Middle East have been extremely outspoken about their anti-Semitic beliefs, including Egypt’s former president Mohamed Morsi and Iran’s former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad….
Read the rest here.