Qaradawi Lauds Anti-Israel Jewish Rabbis; Denies Anti-Semitism


Youssef Qaradawi, perhaps the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, recently welcomed representatives of Neturei Karta, a group of Jewish rabbis whose dream is “dismantling the state of Israel.” According to IslamOnline, an Islamic news portal associated with Qaradawi:

Prominent Muslim scholar Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi has denied any enmity between Muslims and Jews, asserting that Muslims are only opposed to the hostile, expansionist Zionist movement. “There is no enmity between Muslims and Jews,” Qaradawi, the president of the International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS), told visiting Rabbis from the anti-Zionist movement Neturei Karta. He noted that for centuries Jewish citizens were living in peace and coexistence in Muslim countries. “Jews were the wealthiest people in Egypt and many Muslim countries,” Qaradawi told the three rabbis welcomed to his home in the Qatari capital….Sheikh Qaradawi stressed that Muslims and Jews share common grounds as followers of two Abrahamic religions. “Jews who believe in the authentic Torah are very close to Muslims,” he pointed out. “Followers of the two religions agree on many rituals and religious practices such as male circumcision, halal slaughtering, banning pork and prohibiting any statutes inside mosques and synagogues.” The prominent scholar noted that Muslims and Jews were subjected to the same persecution following the fall of the Islamic rule in Andalusia, now Spain. He believes Muslims and Jews, as people who believe in one God, should join hands in fighting atheism, pornography, same-sex marriages and injustice….Qaradawi stressed that relations between Muslims and Jews only strained with the emergence of Zionism and the establishment of Israel on the rubble of Palestine. “Muslims are against the expansionist, oppressive Zionist movement, not the Jews.” 

In fact, Qaradawi has made statements which appear to question the Holocaust and chaired a Muslim Brotherhood theological body that used the notorious anti-Semitic forgery the Protocols of the Elders of Zion in its deliberations. He recently blamed “Zionism” for the Danish Cartoon crisis and suggested that the number of Holocaust victims has been exaggerated. In March, he said on Al Jazeera TV that the “idea of annihilation and extermination came from the Torah.”

A report in a Qatari newspaper further explained the views of Neturei Karta:

Speaking at a meeting with the Doha-based Muslim scholar Sheikh Yousuf al-Qaradawi, rabbis Ahron Cohen and Yisroel Dovid Weiss, who are activists at the Neturei Karta, a group known for its opposition to the establishment of Israel, said that the creation of Israel “was a heresy made up by the Zionists to undermine the true Jewish life”. “Theodor Herzel and his friends were just heretics. They are the worst enemy for the true Jews. According to the Torah, Jews are forbidden to have a state. All Jews should refuse the existence of the so-called state of Israel which tarnished our image. We will not lose hope and dream of dismantling the state of Israel,” said Weiss who called on Qaradawi at his house in Doha.

Cohen and Weiss went on to blame Zionism for bloodshed in the region calling it “the root of all the evil in the region since the establishment of Israel.” Introducing themselves as Jews but not Zionists” , they said that Zionists should not be “mistaken for Jews.” Qaradawi has appeared with the Naturei Karta rabbis in public before and calls them “a big segment of Jews opposing the Zionist entity.” However, there appears to be no evidence that the group, descended from Hungarian Jews that settled in Jerusalem’s Old City in the early nineteenth century, has any substantial membership.

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