‘Islamic Guidance’ on what to read

Remember the absurd story about a stray dog sentenced to death by stoning by a rabbinical court in Jerusalem for the crime of being the reincarnation of a long-dead lawyer? It was eagerly picked up by various international news media including the BBC, where it quickly became the most read story of the day – even though at that time, the obviously nonsensical story had already been retracted.

But hey – why do even the most rudimentary fact-checking when you can run with an utterly bizarre story that shows Israel and Judaism in a bad light?

Now what do you think are the odds that the same media outlets that picked up the dog nonsense and published it as a newsworthy story about Israel will pick up this report from the “Spotlight on Iran” summary for the last week of November published by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center?

“Book of the Year” at 13th book fair in Khorasan Province:

How to Eliminate Israel

How to Eliminate Israel, a book written by a group of religion students from the religious seminary in the city of Qom, was displayed last week at the 13th book fair in Khorasan Province

Hojjat-ol-Eslam Mohammad Ebrahim-Nia, head of the author team, said in an interview given to RASA News Agency that How to Eliminate Israel was awarded “Book of the Year” in the category of books dealing with the “soft war” at the fair where it was displayed. The 180-page book was published in 3000 copies on behalf of the General Department of Culture and Islamic Guidance of Khorasan Razavi Province.

The book is divided into seven chapters which discuss the “characteristics of Israeli thought”, the crimes of the Israeli people, warnings given by the Quran to Muslims regarding the Jews, their weak points, and ways of dealing with them. In addition to up-to-date translations of relevant verses from the Quran, the book includes pictures of Zionists associated with the themes of the cited verses and relevant statements made by Jewish thinkers, Ebrahim-Nia said.

He noted that the content and title of the book are based on religious rulings issued by Ayatollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic revolution, who ruled that the elimination of the State of Israel is a religious duty similar to other duties imposed on Muslims. The verses of the Quran which discuss the Jews are always applicable, he said, and there is no other people about which the Quran warns the Muslims as much as the Jews, who even now continue their crimes against the Muslim nation. […]

3 responses to “‘Islamic Guidance’ on what to read

  1. Amazing. So, did any news outlet of note pick this story up?

    Someday, scholars looking back at this age just how thoroughly it was in denial. The main story of the time in the Arab regions, i.e., nations all on the verge of social upheaval, was missed by all major news outlets and most scholars. The only scholar of note I know of who wrote in depth about the upheaval before it occurred is Walid Phares, who wrote, in 2010, the book The Coming Revolution: Struggle for Freedom in the Middle East. It is a brilliant book, which discusses all of the movements and counter-movements in the region. The book, by the way, also describes why, as he sees it – and he makes a very convincing case – scholars, newspapers, etc., have focused mostly on topics other than what is actually occurring in Arab society. The evidence he points to suggests it is no accident but, rather, a question of money.

  2. Petra,
    Thanks for the reference to the Phares article. His book is a bit less diplomatic and describes the effort by Arab dictators, mostly since 1991 and the demise of the Eastern socialist bloc – and viewing what happened to that bloc as a lesson in what to avoid -, to obfuscate any serious study of Arab lands by basically buying out those who study the topic. Rather than report on Arab countries, they report on your country’s supposed shortcomings. Phares says this not as an advocate for Israel but, if anything, as an advocate desiring the freedom of his homeland, Lebanon.

    He is clearly an advocate for those who actually do want freedom in the Arab world, and not just for the majority population but for the minorities.

    He notes in his book how difficult it is to get anything published in journals about Arab lands, unless the topic is the alleged mistreatment of your country’s Arab population. I think he is correct and that one needs actually to study the society you comment on, not merely blame other countries for its problems.

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