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Arab Jews

By Tamar Yonah
6/29/2009, 12:00 AM

Some are calling them Jewish Palestinians. The fact is, that there are Arabs today who are living in Israel and the Palestinian Authority who are outwardly Moslem, but claim they are really Jewish.  Please watch this video before reading on.

Note: Not sure where this video originates, however I belive it was made by Israel's Channel One.

"Up to 85 percent of the Arabs living between Jordan and the sea are
Jews in one way or another, and at least the half of them know it." says Tsvi Misinai, a Researcher & Hi-Tech entrepreneur who is working on a unique project to - in his words- try to bring peace to Israel.  

"In 1012, about a thousand years ago, there was a decree here [in the Land of Israel] by the Fatimid Khalif, called El-Hakim.  And the decree stated that whoever is not converting to Islam has to leave the country.  At that time, the majority of the Christians left, and the population that remained here was mainly the people of Israel [Jews], that had to convert to Islam externally, but at home, they had been like Marranos (anusim)  [the Jews from Spain who were forced to convert to Christianity) they continued with [their] Judaism."  .  Misinai shared this information that few people know about, on Israel National Radio's Weekend Edition. 

Misinai, and the team he works with, including Arabs themselves, are on a mission trying to bring peace to Israel through a one-state/nation solution.  Educating Arabs that they most likely stemmed from Jews and then integrating them into society as Jews (after proper conversion) will join these lost sheep back to their true heritage.   It is in this way that Misinai believes the fighting can stop and peace can begin. 

This unique and questionable project to bring peace between the Arabs and the Jews is called, "The Engagement": The Roots and Solution to the Problem in the Holy Land.

Misinai works visiting Arabs in several villages in Israel.  He has witnessed many Jewish customs imbedded in these (today) Muslim Arab families.  Jewish customs such as the way they bake bread and taking [hafrashat challah] a separation of dough,  and signs of a mezzuzah on their door posts [that he says were removed because of Islamic hostility], Jewish slaughtering rituals, eating matzah on Passover, and tearing their shirts and mourning for 7 days after the death of a family member, are found practiced in certain Arab villages.  "What we are finding is only in the minority of the population, about 200,000 people." Misinai stated in the interview.   "Most of them today are secular, and they just know their story from grandfather to grandchild, which is given when the old person is close to his death, and is telling the truth, because this is the last time that he can."  -he described, similar to how the Jews from Spain would reveal their Jewish roots to their children when on their death bed.

Misinai describes himself as a secular Israeli but when delving deeper, he admits to a deep belief in G-d and even attempts at keeping many mitzvoth or commandments. 

Tsvi Misinai explains that at least half of the Arabs in Israel know somewhat of their Jewish roots. "Since many Arab clans marry only within themselves, their own villages, some admit in interviews that they consider themselves part of the Jewish nation. They even take pride in the fact that they are part of the Israelite nation since they have not married 'out' throughout the ages.  After we inform them that they are Jews de facto, we will be successful in bringing them back to the Jewish nation. They will take courses in Hebrew, Judaism, Torah and learn about their history, and how they were coerced to accept Islam.  It is in this way that these Arabs in Israel can be prepared for conversion. They will eventually take an oath that they are not Arabs, but rather, Jews or Israelis, for not all of them are from the tribe of Judah, and within 40 years, we will return the majority of them to Jewish awareness.  Whoever is not Muslim will be recognized as a kosher Jew, as they are already Jews."

Misinai continues that just as they are religious or secular today, they will accept Judaism instead of Islam.  "If I, as a secular individual am considered a kosher Jew, there is no reason to force them to be religious, for they are Jews just as I am. We were one people and we will return to being one people."

To hear my interview with him I did back in November, click HERE.