Monday, March 26, 2007

The Psychological/Religious Aspect of Countering Jihad

In Islam, the term Jihad besides fighting one's own evil inclinations, can also have the meaning of waging a "Holy War" against an enemy of Islam and/or Muslim peoples or nations. In the latter case, it is the response of an army -not of individuals- to persecution or oppression of a Muslim people, and in this case Jihad has to be declared by the Khaliph. (Note: since the collapse of Turkey in WWI, there is no Khaliphate, therefore no Jihad could be waged legally). Notwithstanding this legal definition, Muslim nations waging wars, even against other Muslim nations in recent years, labeled them as "Jihad" (e.g. Iraq against Persia; Egypt against Yemen); they inflated the idea of Jihad far beyond its original meaning to suite their temporary interests.

Here in Israel today, we are confronted with a different kind of Jihad. Jihad against the Jews was demanded by Mufti Amin El-Husseini already in 1943 [i.e. five years before the founding of the State of Israel!]. As a friend and ally of Nazi-Germany, he broadcast over Radio Berlin:
"Kill the Jews wherever you find them, this is pleasing to Allah."
Following this call, Jihad was demanded by the "Fourth Conference of the Academy of Islamic Research." This conference was attended by high ranking delegates from 24 Muslim countries, and was convened in 1969 at the behest of Gaml Abd-el-Nassr--then President of Egypt--at Cairo's Al Azhar University. The roceedings were published in 1970 by the office of the "General Organization for Government Printing " in Cairo, in Arabic with an official English translation.

In its "Resolution and Recommendations"... the Conference states:
(a) That the causes for which combat and Jihad must be taken up as
defined in the Holy Qura'n are all manifest in the Israeli aggression.."
(b) ............
(c) The Conference calls for strengthening the struggle which is being
waged by the Palestinian people [note: by the Palestinian people; not
against them!], and providing it with all means of escalating the battle
to fulfill its objective...............
Fifthly :
(a) "Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power,
including steeds of war, to strike terror into [the hearts of] the
enemies of God and your enemies, and others besides, whom you may not
know, but who God doth know (Sura VIII, 60)."
Sixthly :
(a) The Conference denounces the support of certain countries for Israel
and Israel's aggression, and declares such support to be a challenge to
Muslim peoples, a demonstration of enmity toward them, and a total
disregard of their sentiments.
(b) The Conference declares that Muslims everywhere will not remain mere
spectators in the face of Zionist racist covetousness in the Arabic and
Islamic worlds; nor will they shrink from giving their lives in defence
of their countries and sanctuaries, and for the restoration of their
usurped land......." (literal transcript from the "Proceedings”)

We should not think that either the Camp David Agreement with Egypt, or the Oslo Accords with the PLO, has rendered the above calls for Jihad obsolete. Rather, the Jihad psychosis generated by the calls for Jihad (those quoted as well as numerous others) has bred groups like "Islamic Jihad”, "Hamas”, and "Hizbullah." Significantly enough, the PLO's late "Minister of War" was given the name "Abu Jihad" [liter. "Father of the Holy War"]; and even the name of the PLO's chieftain, Arafat, is a nom de guerre, a campaign slogan. Taken from the name of a hill next to Mecca, it signifies the culmination of a Muslim's haj (pilgrimage). So Yassir Arafat is to be the culmination of liberating the entire land of Palestine (PLO = Palestine Liberation Organization). Even after his death, he remains the symbol figure for that end.

These terror groups enjoy widespread material and ideological support in the Muslim world. Their fighters are celebrated as heroes; Muslim states grant them shelter and backing (e.g. via UN resolutions); and not even suicide bombers etc. are considered terrorists in these societies --rather they are promised entry into Paradise if killed in action.

Obviously, fighting these terrorists with conventional weapons (police, military actions, etc.) can at best be only one means of defense. Unfortunately, the notion that improving the economic situation would pull the carpet out from under the Jihad bigots has not proved correct. (Note: The Palestinian Arabs enjoy a higher standard of living than most of their Arab neighbors. Further more, Jihad groups are financed mainly by the wealthiest Muslim nations!)

It seems to me that the psychological/religious aspect of the battle is no less important; indeed it deserves immediate full attention and action. Fortunately, here we do not have to use ploys. It is the Koran [Qura'n] itself which in due time can help defuse the Jihad psychosis, pacify the minds of the Muslim peoples, and pave the way for dependable peace with Israel.

I have developed this theme in an article entitled:
It carries a supportive foreword by the Sheikh Prof. Abdul Hadi Palazzi.

My point is further supported by the fact that there are now quite a few Muslim countries that do not adhere to the (pseudo-religious) call for Jihad against Israel, but rather have established full diplomatic relations with her. Notable among them are Uzbekistan, and Kazakstan, two Muslim countries with over 40 million inhabitants!

An independent institute headed by relevant scholars should be entrusted with this task, and be endowed with the necessary means to work towards neutralizing the Jihad psychosis; to calm the agitated minds of many Muslims; and to work for developing a spiritual atmosphere conducive to establishing a trustworthy peace benefiting all parties involved.

Dr. Asher Eder
Jewish Co-Chairman
Israel-Ishmael Fellowship
A division of the Root & Branch Assoc., Jerusalem
Fax: 972-2-6739012; ; www\\

Foiling the Anti-Israel "Jihad" Psychosis

The incitement by some Muslim circles to annihilate Israel - which began many years before Israel's Declaration of Independence - is on the rise. It threatens not only Israel; it endangers the whole world. It is a crime against national and international laws at least on a par with neo-Nazi incitements and hostilities.

The advocates of Israel's destruction pretend that waging war against her is Jihad, a religious duty, while in fact it is not Jihad at all. It plainly contradicts the teaching of the Qur'an, as well as the tenet of the oneness of Allah: Jihad against Israel is a contradiction in terms, and pretends that fratricide is divine decree!

Mere reliance on protection by soldiers and armed policemen will not solve the problem caused by those who attack Jews and Israel, and claim that doing so is Jihad; nor would economic means or other political devices do the trick. It does not make much sense to negotiate a cease fire with the PA as long as the destruction of the “Zionist entity” is portrayed in the Arab world as a religious duty, or Jihad. We should expose its frenzy and make clear to our neighbors that normal relations with Israel are in line with the teaching of the Qur'an, and not a betrayal of Islam1.

In the present situation, a real Jihad (literally: a religious duty carried out in spite of severe hindrances) worthy of that name and in line with the teaching of the Qur'an, would consist of pursuing brotherly relations between the descendants of Israel and the descendants of Ishmael. This would benefit all, and would honor the Name of the G-d of Abraham, our common ancestor. The Jihad being waged - hatred and fratricide - constitutes a real betrayal of Islamic Holy Writ.

There are many ways to drive home this point: in the classrooms; radio and TV broadcasts, newspapers; leaflets, diplomatic channels, re-educate imprisoned Jihadists; and so forth. The means are at hand - we simply need to employ them, and do it diligently.

Dr. Asher Eder Sheikh Abdul Hadi Palazzi
Jewish Co-Chairman Muslim Co-Chairman
The Islam-Israel Fellowship
Root & Branch Association Ltd, Jerusalem
If you feel you could help further this cause, please contact
Root & Branch Ass. Ltd., P.O.Box 8672, Jerusalem
Fax 02-7639012 e-mail:
x) see the essay, "Peace is Possible between Ishmael and Israel according to Qur'an and Tanakh" available from the above address.


My personal e-mail address:


Post a Comment

<< Home