Tantawi, Grand Imam of Al Azhar (Cairo) University, the Sunni Muslim
“Pope,” and Avatar of the Mainstream, Orthodox Islamic Jew Hatred Now
Evident in Western Europe, as Well as Throughout the Muslim World, with
the Distressingly Ignorant and Gullible Karen Hughes.
Commissioner for Justice, Freedom, and Security, Franco Frattini, who
is the European Union (EU) official responsible “for combating racism
and Antisemitism in Europe,” as reported by The Jerusalem Post 2/2/08, has revealed that Muslims are responsible for fully half (50%) of the documented Antisemitic incidents on the European continent.
Demographic data from 2007 indicate that the total number of Europeans is 494.8 million; estimates of the number of Muslims in Europe range from 15-20 million, or some ~3.0—4.0% of the total European population. Thus, on a population percentage basis, Muslims in Europe account for roughly 24.0 to 32.3 times the number of Antisemitic incidents as their non-Muslim European counterparts.
2007/2008 data are in turn consistent with previous findings from 2006
on the excess prevalence of frank Antisemitism reported amongst
European Muslims, published in The Journal of Conflict Resolution by
Yale University biostatistician Dr. Edward H. Kaplan, and Dr. Charles
A. Small of the Yale Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism. (“Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts Antisemitism in Europe” Journal of Conflict Resolution, 2006, Vol. 50, pp. 548-561.) Drs.
Kaplan and Small examined the views of 5004 Europeans, roughly 500
individuals sampled from each of 10 European Union countries (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom). The authors’ main publicized results confirmed their (rather commonsensical) a priori hypothesis: anti-Israel sentiments strongly and independently predicted the likelihood that an individual was Antisemitic in a graded manner, i.e., the more anti-Israel (on a scale of zero to 4), the more a person was likely to be Antisemitic.
a much more striking and relevant finding in light of the burgeoning
Jew hatred now evident in Europe’s Muslim communities, received much
less attention: in a controlled comparison to European
Christians (as the “referent” group), European Muslims were nearly
eightfold (i.e., 800%) more likely to be overtly Antisemitic. [emphasis added] (“Anti-Israel Sentiment Predicts Antisemitism in Europe,” p. 557 and Table 3, p. 558.)
Furthermore, in light of the Pew Global Attitudes Project data on Muslim attitudes toward Jews in Islamic countries,
the Yale study likely underestimated the extent of Antisemitism amongst
Europe’s Muslim communities, had more poorly educated, less acclimated
European Muslims been sampled. Pew’s earlier international survey
indicated (“The Great Divide: How Westerners and Muslims View Each Other”, Pew Global Attitudes Project, June 22, 2006.),
In the Muslim world, attitudes toward Jews remain starkly negative, including virtually unanimous unfavorable ratings of 98% in Jordan and 97% in Egypt.
Muslims living in Western countries have a more moderate view of Jews -
still more negative than positive, but not nearly by the lopsided
margins that prevail in Muslim countries.
Mr. Frattini mentioned these alarming new EU data
on the disproportionate occurrence of overt Antisemitic acts by
European Muslims in a conversation with Israeli Minister for Diaspora
Affairs Isaac Herzog last week, during the Second European Union-Israel
Seminar for Combating Racism and Antisemitism, in Jerusalem.
Herzog, who coordinates at the cabinet level Israeli government
activities in combating antisemitism, opined that it was “…not new that
Frattini relates a large percentage of Antisemitic incidents to radical Islam [emphasis added], and it’s important to say, not Islam [emphasis added] as such.”
Mr. Herzog’s conjectural distancing of Muslim antisemitism from
“Islam,” wishfully attributing it to so-called “radical Islam,” defies
volumes of doctrinal evidence
from Islam’s foundational texts, and jurisprudence, more than a
millennium of Islamic history, and endless commonplace, common sense
observations, past and present.
For example, Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi wrote these words in his 700 page treatise documenting and rationalizing Muslim Jew hatred, Banu Isra’il fi al-Qur’an wa al-Sunna [Jews in the Qur’an and the Traditions], originally published in the 1970s, and then re-issued in 1986/87:
Qur’an describes the Jews with their own particular degenerate
characteristics, i.e. killing the prophets of Allah, corrupting His
words by putting them in the wrong places, consuming the people’s
wealth frivolously, refusal to distance themselves from the evil they
do, and other ugly characteristics caused by their deep-rooted
lasciviousness…only a minority of the Jews keep their word….[A]ll Jews
are not the same. The good ones become Muslims, the bad ones do not.
Tantawi was apparently rewarded for this scholarly effort by being named Grand Imam of Al-Azhar University
in 1996, a position he still holds. These are the expressed, “carefully
researched” views on Jews held by the nearest Muslim equivalent to a
Pope—the head of the most prestigious center of Muslim learning in
Sunni Islam, Sunnis representing some 85% of the world’s Muslims. And
Sheikh Tantawi has not mollified such hatemongering beliefs since
becoming the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar as his statements on the Jews as
“enemies of Allah, descendants of apes and pigs”, the legitimacy of
homicide bombing of Jews, or “dialogue” with Jews (just below), make
who avoids meeting with the enemies in order to counter their dubious
claims and stick fingers into their eyes, is a coward. My stance stems
from Allah’s book [the Qur’an], more than one-third of which deals with
the Jews…[I] wrote a dissertation dealing with them [the Jews], all
their false claims and their punishment by Allah. I still believe in
everything written in that dissertation. [i.e., from above, in Banu
Isra’il fi al-Qur’an wa al-Sunna]
case illustrates the prevalence and depth of sacralized, “normative”
Jew hatred in the contemporary Muslim world. Arguably Islam’s leading
mainstream cleric, Tantawi embodies how the living legacy of Muslim
anti-Jewish hatred, and violence remains firmly rooted in mainstream,
orthodox Islamic teachings, not some aberrant vision of “radical Islam.”
the modern pronouncements and teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
stand in stark relief. Professor Phillip Cunningham (in, “Education for
Shalom: Religion Textbooks and the Enhancement of the Catholic-Jewish
Relationship,” 1995, p. 39) summarized the principal features of the
Second Vatican Council’s “Declaration of the Relationship of The Church
to Non-Christian Religions” (Nostre Aetate), issued in 1965, for
example, as follows:
Aetate rejected key elements of the ancient anti-Jewish tradition. ‘The
Jews’ were not guilty of the crucifixion, had not been renounced by
God, were not under a wandering curse, and their covenantal bond with
Thus it is now unimaginable then Cardinal Ratzinger, twenty years prior to being elected Pope Benedict,
could have written a 700 page treatise detailing and rationalizing the
most virulent anti-Jewish motifs extant in Christian theology, which he
continued to extol unashamedly (and for eternity), while Pope. Sadly,
what is unimaginable in Christendom, has not only occurred, but passes
virtually without recognition in the Islamic world of today.
intellectually honest assessment and understanding of Islamic
antisemitism, and the anti-Jewish violence it begets must begin with an
unapologetic analysis of the motifs of Jew hatred contained in the
foundational texts of Islam (i.e., Koran, hadith, and sira), while
identifying those, like Sheikh Tantawi, who continue to preach and
sanction this religious bigotry, regardless of their “stature."