On Palestine, Israel, Abrahamic faith, true history and Human destiny
Ibraheem A. Waziri
- “Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the Land.”
Eja, a thought provoking, insightful and sometimes inciteful socio-political commentator on the Nigerian Village Square, recently, unleashed his venom on the Israelites about the host of atrocities they commit from “their” Holy Land, shelling bombs on their neighbouring Palestinians resident of the Gaza strip. While he maybe right in his opposition to the atrocities being committed by the so said Israelites, he surely is wrong in his (mis)representation of history and the true tenets of Abrahamic faith and its literatures to which he attributed endorsement of un-scaled violence and affront to any other, than those belonging to the race of the “originators” or “claimants” of the faith.
This is not surprising as Eja, a self proclaimed Afrocentrist, who professes faith in ancient Yoruba spirituality, itself an isolationist and ethnic religion, may not help seeing every human intellectual and social effort in the breath of history as geared toward achieving supremacy in the mould of racial superiority endorsed by racial gods. Thus checking the veracity of the claims of the Jews of a racial God in favour of their own race exclusively, or the claims in European version of Christianity which institutionalised racism across the globe in the 19th and 20th centuries, in the scriptural interpretations, may not be worth his endeavours. As no vision of a universal deity guiding human destiny can make sense to him.
But the truth of the matter is correct reading of historical processes and the use of the ordained scriptures popularly known as Abrahamic, to interpret present events has long ago revealed the contamination that happened in the Abrahamic faith, which truly and explicitly declares that individual merits both in this world and hereafter are gauged only on the basis of righteousness, which is known as having faith:
“….in Allah, and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your wealth, out of love for Him (or despite your love for wealth) for your relatives, for orphans, for the needy, for the traveller, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; (righteousness is) to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity, to fulfil contracts which you make; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of Truth, the God-fearing.” (Qur’an, al-Baqarah, 2:177)
It was indeed in the recognition of the righteousness borne by Abraham (pbuh) who was a son of a crooked idolater, a similitude of the same righteousness achieved by different people of different races and thousands of years before Abraham (pbuh), not his lineage, that around 2000BC, he was directed by God to thread the path to Jerusalem and was promised to dwell there as the leader of humankind. But when he asked God to extend the same promise made to him to his offspring, God clearly said that his covenant “will not extend to those who commit, Dhulm,” that is, injustice, oppression, tyranny(Qur’an, al-anbiyah, 21:71, al-Baqarah, 2:124). Since then it was reaffirmed that the condition of inheriting the earth and by extension the part of it that is most divinely blessed is, righteousness, which any other can attain by work, not by lineage as it is explicitly stated so in the scriptures (Qur’an, al-Anbiyah, 21:105, Psalm, 25:12-14, Psalm, 37:11, Psalm, 37:29, Matthew, 5:5).
Though it maybe asked as to why a particular space on earth should be made chosen and blessed as the heartbeat of the earth and above all other spaces? While the answer cannot readily be given or specific, it can be said that it is only a divine wish to make anything to be anything just as we cannot ask or find answers to why the human nose, eyes, ears, mouth, and brains are all concentrated on the head when there are other parts of the body that are apparently left bearing less significance.
At a practical level of understanding, we see that throughout known history, conflicts among major civilisations have always been about the question of conquest or ownership of that same space under discourse. And what has been amazingly clear over the millennia is those ruling that space were always the leaders of the one civilisation leading the world of their time.
Around 1870BC the first mention of Jerusalem appeared in an Egyptian text. In 1700, 1500BC the rulers of Egypt called Hyksos, invaded the land. It is also the same land that God gave to the Jews, about 250 years later, at the Exodus and after the fall of Remesis II, the Egyptian Pharaoh of that age, on the condition of their righteousness, and in the hope that they would grow to lead humankind on the basis of faith in almighty God, equality of all before him, justice and fairness (Qur’an, al-‘Araf, 7:137).
So as we sail through the boat of history we see that the Jews proved strong headed to the bounties of their Lord and did not accept that highly gift at that time. They turned to the worship of the golden calf in the mould of the idolatry, the sorcery they learnt during their stay in ancient Egypt. God was not kind to what they were doing, barred them from entry to the Promised Land, and were left in the wilderness for forty years. It was during that wilderness that Moses (pbuh) died. Much later, almost another 250 years, Prophet-King David (pbuh), made Jerusalem the centre of his vast empire, extending from Egypt to the Euphrates. He led an already racially mixed human population of his time with justice in righteousness having Prophet Lukman (pbuh), a black African, known in history as the Wise, as his supreme Judge. His son Prophet-King Solomon (pbuh) who later married the black African queen of Sheba (Ethiopia) succeeded him on the throne and lived on the legacy.
After the demise of Prophet-King Solomon (pbuh) in 922BC, the leadership of the Jews, the Pharisees and the Scribes began to retouch history and subsequently the divine scripts to make God appear favoured to their bloodline only and the basis for the inheritance of the Holy Land was changed so in contradiction of the fact that it was basically righteousness (Deuteronomy, 9:6). They created many new laws banning intermarriage with the gentiles, legalising their properties and lands to be taken unjustly and making usurious transactions on them.
They were warned by Prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah: 32:36) who was then among them, on this transgression of lying against God and pushing the boundaries of his commands, but they did not heed. In 587 BC, Nebuchadnezzar, a Babylonian king laid siege on the Holy Land, destroyed the temple built by Prophet-King Solomon (pbuh) and took slaves of the cream of them. They managed to trace their steps back to the land in 538 BC after the Persian King Cyrus captured it from Babylonians and allowed them to return as his citizens. They rebuilt Prophet-King Solomon’s (pbuh) temple.
After series of events, conquests and re-conquests, the territory became under the control of the Romans in 63BC. At that time the Jews were waiting for their prophesied liberator, the Messiah. It was in that interval that they kept killing their prophets who dared to tell them to mend their ways and tour the path of righteousness borne of Abraham (pbuh). Among them killed were, Zachariah (pbuh) and John (pbuh), (Luke, 11:49-51), and finally it was Jesus (pbuh) himself that they would attempt to kill (Qur’an, al-Nisa, 4:157).
In 70CE a Roman army led by General Titus besieged Jerusalem, destroyed the city, killed the inhabitants, dispersed them and brought down Prophet King Solomon’s (pbuh) temple again. The temple was still in ruins when the second Caliph of Islam, Umar (ra) conquered the city in 638CE and ordered the temple rebuilt. Jesus (pbuh) had already explicitly prophesised to the Jews that the kingdom of God would be taken from them and be given to a nation bringing forth its fruits (Matthew 21:43).
Under Umar (ra) once again the world was to witness a leadership akin to what Prophet-King David and Prophet-King Solomon (pbut) gave it, a leadership on sound principled justice and fairness that recognized single divine authority, Allah, on the universe. Since then different races, ranging from Egyptians to Turks – save for the period of the Crusaders interventions and control – have ascended the leadership of the world, and ownership of Jerusalem, under the banner of Islam and on its ordained, authenticated flag of righteousness akin to that of Abraham (pbuh).
In 1917CE the Ottoman Turks, due to their apparent weaknesses in keeping to the standard of the righteousness, ceded the control of the area to the British government of that time, which in turn surrendered it to the modern Ashke-Nazi Jews. These Jews, supported by their new God (idol) in the name of Economic Determinism; modern tools of blackmail and terror; the altered Deuteronomic Laws, which defaulted on the conditions of righteousness by Abrahamic standard thereby sanctioning the perpetration of unimaginable crimes against gentiles; arrogant claims that the Holy Land is exclusively theirs by divine inheritance and none has a right to a hut in it. They descended on the peopled area and millions were displaced and many a soul made to perish. Since then the area has not known peace till our present times.
In the present scale of conflict, I am not with other fair minded commentators like Uri Avneri, an atheistic Jew and a peace activist in the Middle-East, who observed in his article, The arc of insurgencies , that the genius of the Jews has failed them for not understanding from the onset, and on a fair reading of history, that liberation wars akin to those of the Palestinians has always led to success on the part of the fighters. He argued that, a reasonable ground for political settlement should have been negotiated and sought for, long ago with the Palestinians, on a fair term of distribution, if the Jews were truly creatively intelligent as they claim.
It is my opinion that the genius of the Jews has not failed them. They are only wise to understand that no amount of political settlement can continue to guarantee them the control of the Holy Land around a neighbourhood and in a world where Islam as an ideological standard of principled justice is massively making inroad into the hearts and minds of fair people. Any type of peace that will allow the free mixing of the Jews and their Muslims neighbours is likely to produce Jerusalem of the next few generations with only Jews who have become Muslims or are sympathetic to Islam or its values. This is another fact of history as it was through interaction and neighbourliness that Islam made inroad into far distant places like Indonesia and Sub-Saharan Africa even to the forest depth and heart of Yoruba territory in the present western Nigeria. Uri Avneri testified to this also in the article he wrote in 2006, Muhammad’s Sword, crushing the allegations of Pope Benedict XVI, when the Pope repeated the charges against Islam having been spread by the sword. Infact Islam does not leave even those hostile to it without conquering them ideologically. The Mongols who brought it untold destructions by way of conquest were themselves converted to Islam and became its most passionate defenders of late history, the Turks. So the intelligent Jews know that any kind of such peaceful arrangement in the Middle-East would only bring closer the days when they will hear their children chanting with the rest of their neighbours the true Abrahamic law saying:
“Wala udwana illah alazzalimin”, meaning, “let there be no enmity except against the oppressors.” (Qur’an, al-Baqarah, 2:193)
So they instead elected to go to war which as Uri observed will certainly not yield a very desirable result for their own end, since it is obvious they will keep winning the war while the victory is constantly taken away from them by public sympathy, and given, to their victims. And they know very well they cannot kill all the well intentioned, righteous lot who will keep telling them they are wrong. It is now only a matter of time, before they are cowered or overpowered, for the respite of God for those who lie against Him, pushing the boundaries of His commands, is but for a short time.