The real nature of the conflict between Israel and the Moslem World
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei spoke at the meeting on Non-Aligned Nations and in front of delegates from 120 nations including UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said that Israel usurped Arab land and killed and tortured thousands of innocents. No one objected to his statements.
It is time to remind ourselves of the real nature of the Moslem/Arab Israel conflict. It can be described briefly by placing it in its proper historic and geopolitical perspective.
Nagib Azoury, an Christian Arab nationalist, wrote in his book The Awakening of the Arab Nation (1905):
“Two important phenomena of the same nature but nevertheless opposed which have not yet attracted attention manifest themselves at this time in Asiatic Turkey. They are the awakening of the Arab nation and the latent efforts of the Jews to reconstitute the ancient monarchy of Israel on a very large scale. These two movements are destined to fight each other until one prevails over the other. Upon the final outcome of that battle between these two peoples representing opposing principles, the fate of the entire world depends.”
In 1994, two leading spokesmen for the Moslem position made typical statements indicating that absolutely nothing has changed since Azoury’s prescient remarks almost a century ago. Ibrahim Ghawshal, head of Hamas in Jordan said:
“We think that the conflict between Arabs and Jews, between Muslims and Jews, is a cultural conflict that will continue to rage throughout all time.”
Sayyid Muhammed Husayn Fadlallah, spiritual head of Hisballah in Lebanon noted that:
“The struggle against the Jews in which Muslims are engaged is a continuation of the old struggle of the Muslims against the Jews’ conspiracy against Islam. Israel is not merely a group that established a state at the expense of a people. It is a group which wants to establish Jewish culture at the expense of Arab culture.”
The realistic Jewish response to the Arab attitude was expressed pithily by Arthur Ruppin, a Zionist leader, in 1936:
“The Arabs do not agree to our venture. If we want to continue our work in Eretz Israel against their desires, there is no alternative but that lives will be lost. It is our destiny to be in a continual state of warfare with the Arabs. This situation may well be undesirable but such is the reality.”
Thus, Arab hostility to Israel is not based upon any action or inaction on the part of the Jewish state. It is fundamental to the Arab/Moslem belief and self image. As such, it does not lend itself to the types of conflict resolution that are so favored by the Western world.
This is extremely difficult for the Western secular and rationalist world to accept since it finds it almost impossible to posit spiritual passions as independent primary forces in history. Yet they can be and in the Middle East, unfortunately, they actually are.