Egyptians’ Lust For War With Israel

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In yet another blow to the hopes of those who confidently told us that the Egyptian uprising heralded the dawn of a new, secular democracy there, a new poll shows that 54% of Egyptians want to scrap the Camp David accords that have kept an uneasy peace with Israel since 1979. If you thought that supporters of Western secular pluralism would have no problem with the Camp David accords, you’re right: the poll, conducted by the Pew Research Center, reveals that a significant number of Egyptians don’t actually support secularism and democracy at all. Instead, they manifest a deeply ingrained Islamic antisemitism that leads them to hate Israel – and the Camp David accords – for religious, not political reasons.

“Strongest among men in enmity to the believers wilt thou find the Jews…” — Qur’an 5:82. The Qur’an contains a great deal of material that forms the foundation for a hatred of Jews that has persisted throughout Islamic history. It portrays the Jews as the craftiest, most persistent, and most implacable enemies of the Muslims — and there is no Islamic authority that has moved to mitigate the most destructive interpretations of all this. The Qur’anic material on the Jews remains the prism through which far too many Muslims see the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Camp David accords, and Jews in general to this day.

A vivid illustration of this came several years ago from Islam Online, a website founded by, among others, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, in 1997. Al-Qaradawi has justified suicide bombings against Israeli civilians, and in 2004 Islam Online posted an article entitled “Jews as Depicted in the Qur’an.” In it, Sheikh ‘Atiyyah Saqr, the former head of the Fatwa Committee at the most respected institution in Sunni Islam, Al-Azhar University in Cairo, depicts Jews in a chillingly negative light, illustrated with abundant quotations from the Qur’an. Among other charges he levels at the Jews, Saqr says that they “used to fabricate things and falsely ascribe them to Allah”; they “love to listen to lies”; they disobey Allah and ignore his commands; they wish “evil for people” and try to “mislead them”; and they “feel pain to see others in happiness and are gleeful when others are afflicted with a calamity.” He adds that “it is easy for them to slay people and kill innocents,” for “they are merciless and heartless.” And each charge he follows with Qur’anic citations (including, among others, 3:75; 5:64; 3:181; 5:41; 5:13; 2:109; 3:120; 2:61; 2:74; 2:100; 59:13-14; 2:96; and 2:79).

Though he offers many examples of the alleged evil traits of the Jews supported by the Qur’an, Saqr doesn’t mention the notorious Qur’anic passages that depict an angry Allah transforming Jews into apes and pigs: 2:63-66; 5:59-60; and 7:166. The first of those passages depicts Allah telling the Jews who “profaned the Sabbath”: “Be as apes despicable!” It goes on to say that these accursed ones serve “as a warning example for their time and for all times to come.” The second has Allah directing Muhammad to remind the “People of the Book” about “those who incurred the curse of Allah and His wrath, those of whom some He transformed into apes and swine, those who worshipped evil.” The third essentially repeats this, saying of the Sabbath-breaking Jews that when “in their insolence they transgressed (all) prohibitions,” Allah said to them, “Be ye apes, despised and rejected.”

In traditional Islamic theology these passages have not been considered to apply to all Jews. The classic Qur’anic commentator Ibn Kathir, whose commentary is widely distributed and respected among Muslims today, quotes earlier authorities saying that “those who violated the sanctity of the Sabbath were turned into monkeys, then they perished without offspring,” and that they “only lived on the earth for three days, for no transformed person ever lives more than three days.” While parts of the Qur’an are hostile to the Jews, Muhammad’s curse, in this case, was limited to these Sabbath-breakers, not to all Jews.

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  • Chezwick_mac

    There is this incredibly naive assumption among our elite and even general public that if or when a peace treaty is signed on the dotted line, the Middle East will henceforth become forever a beacon of tranquility. One only need look at the lessons of history to surmise that peace-treaties usher in not permanent peace, but an episodic version, to be broken in the months, years, or decades ahead when the moment becomes propitious. Add to this reality the inherent instability of the Middle East, the brittleness of regimes and of society itself, and the pathologically-ingrained hatred of Israel and Jews, and one can readily acknowledge the fool-hardiness of expectations regarding Israeli territorial concessions.

    Egyptian society is much more mature than Palestinian society, and yet, here we find the Egyptians preparing the psychological groundwork for rejecting the peace-treaty they signed over three decades ago. How long would it take "Palestine" to devolve into a similar rejection-mode after signing on the dotted line?

    There will be no peace with a faith-based society in which the #1 theological imperative is to wage war. That applies to Israel, to the West, indeed to all infidel lands. If only we had the courage and fortitude to acknowledge such an uncomfortable reality.

    • ajnn

      Your analysis while excellent, has one flaw.


      The only bulwark against war seems to be Israeli strength and American influence based on the United States subsidizing the Egyptian military and controlling their access to spare parts for their larger weapons.

  • Mohammed el-Masri

    The Koran also states inequivocally that Allah wishes the Land of Israel for the Jews and the Jews only. The pro-Zionist verses in the Koran are verses 2:47,7:137, 17:104, 20:80, 26:59, 45:16, 44:32, 32:23. While the anti-Jewish verses are restricted to specific times and groups of Jews, the pro-Zionist ones are universal and irrevocable. There are also a handful of Zionist Muslim clerics. It's a serious derreliction of duty by Israel that it's not using the Koran as its weapon in the war of ideas. All the misfortunes of the Muslims in the last century can be seen as Allah's punishment for fighting Israel in defilement of His wishes. See:…

    • Chezwick_mac

      A tiny, irrelevant group of peaceful Muslims who have not one iota of possibility for effecting actual change in the Muslim world.

    • Fred Dawes

      No the Koran is about mass murder of all jews and God is not allah that word means evil one, the ideals of allmuslims are to fool and murder all non muslims and the jews who i may-not like have a total right to Israel. we all know what the muslim is so stop with your nice nice BS.

      Stop the mass murder of blacks and stop going to the USA And get out of europe to do murder and rape and jihad.

      • aspacia

        No Dawes, Mohammed is correct; the Qu'ran does indeed claim to leave the land of the Jews to the Jews.

    • ziontruth

      "It's a serious derreliction of duty by Israel that it's not using the Koran as its weapon in the war of ideas."

      How do you know Israel hasn't done that? But as with Sheikh Hadi Palazzi, these quotes fall on deaf ears.

      Thanks for your post.

      • aspacia

        Yes, Al Jazeera has broadcast at three episodes regarding this, and no Muslim seems to listen or care to hear this fact.

  • Mohammed el-Masri

    Doesn't matter how few we are now. Israel can still make the case that the settlements are legal and mandatory according to Islamic law, not just intenational law. And it could find a board of Zionist Muslim clerics that issues a fatwah next time Israel has to defend itself against Hezbollah or Hamas, legitimizing Israel's actions in terms of Islamic law. Then Israel could defend itself without its hands tied behind its back as now, and finally achieve victory for everyone's benefit. Because just as the Allies' victory ended up being better for Germany itself, complete Israeli victory would be better for the Arabs than this permanent tug of war, allowing us to move on to constructive pursuits. Christian Zionist were not too many decades ago either, but now they're more solid supporters of Israel than millions of Leftard Jews. You can build the Zionist Muslim constituency too, but even if not, quoting the Koran frees Israel from having to hold her punches in the vain hope of looking pretty to the world.

    • Stephen_Brady

      I appreciate your apparent sincerity, on this matter. However, you do know that the Koran was written in two different places, Mecca and Medina. The Meccan verses are the most "moderate" of them, while the Medinan verses seem to be the basis of life and outlook for most Muslims, today.

      An assymetrical strategy might be employed by the Israelis, but no one should doubt the depth of hatred felt by most Muslims towards Israel. I've stated that the fall of Mubaraq would lead to war between Egypt and Israel, and I stand by it.

  • Bert

    The comments of Mohammed el-Masri make sense to me. There is nothing to lose and everything go gain by paying attention to his thoughtful suggestions. Even a few courageous Muslims speaking out would gain considerable attention and perhaps encourage other Muslims who quietly feel the same way to also speak out. We already have the radical Jews on the left gaining much attention in their attacks on Israel and even a minority voice can be heard. Unfortunately the Jewish establishment remains inept and note how even today that same establishment is slow to accept the support of Christians who support Israel.

    • PhillipGaley

      ". . . . his [Mohammed's] thoughtful suggestions.", oh gosh, . . . nice to find a comic moment just here-and-there—"Bert the comic", thanks, Bert, for your profound insight; and: ". . . . courageous Muslims . . . .". I read one—now converted—who said that, before they went out to violate a woman, they'd spend a couple hours praying / chanting in the mosque—doing so, put them into an altered consciousness, making anything possible, . . .
      GO! Bert! . . . . Bert, the blind fool, . . .

    • ziontruth

      "Even a few courageous Muslims speaking out would gain considerable attention…"

      "Considerable attention" is right. However, it's not the kind of attention any person would want. These brave folks are all in hiding. Even in the West.

    • old white guy

      it would still be taqiyya.

    • aspacia

      Yes, and Jazeera has broadcast this, however Muslims do not seem to opinions that differ from their world view.

  • Grantman

    Interesting comment, Mr. el-Masri. I'll have to look into it. And if true, you are correct that Israel should use this as part of their asymetrical strategy. Thanks for posting.

  • Mzungu

    Egypt would be foolish to attack Israel. Israel could do more damage to Egypt than even a nuke could do. Two words ……. Aswan Dam. It holds back a 300 mile long lake.

    • PhillipGaley

      Well, maybe, every so often, a good war can help to relieve tensions—bunches of younger men with guns, don't relate well to the opposite sex, little or nothing to live for: "Let's go shoot 'em up!", for whatever reason or non-reason, . . . just part of the human condition—ay?

    • cremaster

      Possibly, but it is well protected, and their new allies, Iran, could provide further air cover.

  • Wesley69

    Just great, and Obama, having dispatched Mubarak, the keeper of this peace, has given the masses what they want. If Israel would just go away, problems in the Mideast would be solved – that is what this administration thinks. No, Mr. President. Israel has the support of the American people and if we can get you out in 2012, Israel will know that the US(the government) is again in their corner.

  • Alfonz Shmedlap

    W., 04/27/11 common era

    Surprise, surprise! Egypt isn't about to start to hold New England-style Town Hall Meetings and look like the Iowa State Fair. It's simply Islam Uber Alles! Israel should treat the enemy AS an enemy, no more undue concern for "civilian" injuries and deaths.
    Most of the Gentile world will blame Israel regardless of what it does or doesn't do. With that in mind, Israel should remember the immortal words of General George S. Patton:
    "The purpose of the military is to kill people and break things." Nuff said. . .

  • PhillipGaley

    I don't think that, they're faith-based, at all, but only this, to understand that, Islam was generated by a man—by a bad man—and for men—bad men—and is maintained to the same end, and that, wherever it goes, necessarily, it must reproduce slums similar to those of long existence in the Middle Eastern nations, no great erudition or powers of logic is required; it is easily explainable: In connection with the increase in violent crime which European nations are sustaining, scholars point out the effect of the Moslem community’s centuries of 1st cousin marriage, as producing 3X rate of birth defects and diminished IQ with emotional instability. While a 1st cousin marriage here-and-there shows in no appreciable damage, a society which is dependent upon it will show in very many of them being genetic throwbacks.

    It follows then, that, generally, the Moslems’ personalities are not so much shaped by beliefs and doctrines—things which are susceptible of individual thought processes and consequent opinions—but their personality development is rather, entwined in mere patterns of behavior—things of common inculcation and acquiescence, even by the so-called moderate whom some suppose to be among them. And partly, no doubt, in this way, many mature Moslems feel it reasonable to teach mayhem unto their young—and have so done, time out of mind, and in every place which they come to inhabit.

    And, it also follows then, that—as in those nations wherein they are newly found and ubiquitous—to the same end of physical survival—food and clothing, and so forth—as any other cult, inevitably, Moslems are thus constrained by circumstance to be parasitic to the host society; for, unable to build their own nations, they are predatory upon what good is to be found in any other, and the slums which all of the Middle Eastern nations are, must be reproduced in Europe and elsewhere.

    And finally, I would marvel to know just when there shall have been sufficient record of anti-social and criminal activity—the world round—to have the nasty thing recognized in law as criminal / terrorist, with assets seized, wiretaps, trials, etc., and with a view to at least freeing many, many women and even more; so, . . .

  • WilliamJamesWard

    It is bad in Egypt, Libya, Syria and every other Muslim stronghold, the thrust is
    all against Israel because they minimally hate Jews and Christians but in the
    maximum thrust hate God. Spiritual warfare is aflame and bad times are ahead,
    wishful thinking while nice can not stop the waves of evil eminating out of
    Islamist institutions and Leftist politicians. If you are a decent person with
    Judeo-Christian values, stand strong and do not waver in the face of evil.

  • P.D.

    Strange, but reading the islamist idiot leaders words and things from the koran, it really sounds like they are talking about themselves!! All they said seems to be perfectly applicable to muslims, particularly arabic scum, not Jews or anyone else.

  • old white guy

    sooner or later these yahoos will get the tribulation started.

  • LindaRivera

    The Muslim war against Jews, is actually a war against G-D and G-D's Holy Laws, Who gave His holy Laws to his Hebrew Jewish servant, Moses:


  • cremaster

    It's certainly a pet theory of mine that there could be another Egypt-Israel war, and that was possibly the reason for the operation against Bin Laden, to deflect criticism of having lost control of the situation.

    Against this is the possibility that US aid to Egypt could be cut, but Israel is so unpopular around the world – even when it's defending itself – that the US might just leave well alone (certainly under the current government).

    Why are the media not even talking about this issue? After all, Egypt opened its border with Gaza. At the very least, they will use Hamas to wage a proxy war.

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