Insecure Islamists reject Jewish Jerusalem as a strategy to strengthen its position and Europe’s post-Christian political elite do so to reject their Judeo-Christian heritage.
Ranting about Jerusalem, Jews and the West has become the Muslim world’s mental Colosseum, where the Muslim masses are temporarily distracted from their increasingly destitute existence and self-inflicted failures.
No other part of the world shields itself more from reality than the Muslim world. It should therefore come as no surprise that the Muslim world strongly disapproves of President Trump’s recognition of reality: Jerusalem is the historic and modern capital of Israel and the Jewish people.
The leaders of 57 Muslim states representing the world’s 1.7 billion Muslims, convened in Turkey to project a unified front against Israel and America. Behind the façade of hysterical Muslim rage, Jerusalem and Jews represent a rare opportunity for the deeply fractured and divided Muslim and Arab world to divert the attention of its increasingly dissatisfied masses.
While the despots in the Muslim world enjoy a life of unimaginable luxury, the vast majority of their populations remain stuck in chronic and severe socio-economic poverty and illiteracy. Not only is most of the Muslim and Arab world not closing the gap with the developed world, it is increasingly lagging behind the rapidly growing emerging markets in Asia and elsewhere.
The Arab world’s real problems are not a tiny Jewish state but a severe deficit in three crucial areas: freedom, knowledge and gender equality. Nowhere else in the world are women and minorities more oppressed and persecuted than in the Muslim Arab world. Needless to say, a society that oppresses more than half of its citizens is undermining its potential.
No other region in the world represses knowledge and freedom with more zeal than the Muslim Arab world. Since the knowledge economy is the future, it puts the Arab world at a distinct disadvantage compared to the rest of the world.
A UN Human Development report composed by Arab experts revealed that more books are translated into Spanish in one year than the number of books that have been translated into Arabic during the last 1000 years.
Tiny Israel with 8 million people produces far more patents and scientific reports than the output of the Arab world’s almost 400 million people.
However, ranting about Jews and Jerusalem runs deeper than only trying to divert focus from the Muslim world’s severe failures. According to Islamic tradition, Jews must live as submissive dhimmis under Muslim rule.
Jerusalem as the capital of a successful Israel, seriously undermines Islam’s perception of itself in the world. A reborn Jewish state represents what Islamists reject: Jewish national independence and Jewish military power.
On the surface, it appears puzzling that Europe sides with the Muslim world against the United States regarding Jerusalem. However, post-Christian Europe and the Islamic Middle East share one goal for different reasons: the rejection of Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish nation.
For ideologically insecure Islamists, rejecting a Jewish Jerusalem is a strategy to strengthen Islam’s position. By rejecting Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Europe’s post-Christian political elite is ultimately rejecting Europe’s Judeo-Christian heritage.
Unlike the US, Europe is also trying to placate its huge, rapidly growing and increasingly radicalized Muslim population. By contrast, the United States is embracing its Christianity by reaffirming its bonds with Israel, Jerusalem and the Jewish people.
Paradoxically, for Islam, Jerusalem has only been valuable as a rallying cry against Jews and Christians. From 1517 until 1917, Jerusalem was a neglected backwater in the Muslim Ottoman Empire. From 1948 until 1967 when Jerusalem’s old city was occupied by Jordan, it was deliberately neglected in order to boost its own de facto capital, Amman.
Synagogues and historical Jewish artifacts where systematically demolished by the Muslim Arab occupiers while the world looked the other way. Jerusalem only became interesting again when it returned to its rightful owner: the Jewish people.
Turkey’s Sultan-aspiring leader Erdogan cynically uses Jerusalem and Israel to boost his own standing in the Islamic world. Enjoying being at the center of the Muslim summit in Istanbul, Erdogan repeated the lie that reborn Israel is built on “occupied Palestine”. It is especially ironic given the fact that Erdogan’s Ottoman predecessors occupied the land of Israel for four centuries and oppressed Arabs and Jews alike.
Never mind that there was no “Palestinian people” to be found anywhere during the Turkish occupation of the land of Israel. Erdogan appears to think that he is uniquely equipped to preach to Israel about “occupation” despite Turkey’s occupation of Kurdistan and northern Cyprus.
As a drunkard who accuses others of alcoholism, PLO leader Abbas ironically accused Israel of “fake news” when Pallywood epitomizes fake history and a systematic whitewashing of reality.
Trump’s America is gradually forcing the Muslim world to face the reality of a reborn independent Jewish state with Jerusalem as its capital. This is not only good news for Israel but significantly increases the chances for a solution of the Arab-Jewish conflict.
President Trump may in fact become a blessing in disguise for the Muslim and Arab world. Only by ending its Judeophobic obsession and facing reality, can the Muslim world begin the long and difficult journey towards enlightenment and modernity.
Daniel Kryger is a writer and a political analyst. He lives in Israel.
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