Modern doyen of Islamic studies, Bernard Lewis, wrote his most unapologetic analysis of Islam’s quintessential totalitarianism in 1954, entitled, “Communism and Islam”. Redolent with insight, and published as the totalitarian Communist menace ravaged the globe, Lewis encapsulated these twin totalitarianisms by repeating a witty aphorism from that era describing the creed of atheistic Communism in Islamic parlance:
There is no God, and Karl Marx is his prophet
[I]t was authoritarian, often arbitrary, sometimes tyrannical. There are no parliaments or representative assemblies of any kind…in the history of Islam; nothing but the sovereign power, to which the subject owed complete and unwavering obedience as a religious duty imposed by the Holy Law
Directly comparing Islam and Communism, Lewis observed:
Both offer an exhilarating feeling of mission, of purpose, of being engaged in a collective adventure to accelerate the historically inevitable victory of the true faith over the infidel evil-doers. The traditional Islamic division of the world into the House of Islam and the House of War, two necessarily opposed groups, of which-the first has the collective obligation of perpetual struggle against the second, also has obvious parallels in the Communist view of world affairs. There again, the content of belief is utterly different, but the aggressive fanaticism of the believer is the same…The call to a Communist Jihad, a Holy War for the faith-a new faith, but against the self-same Western Christian enemy – might well strike a responsive note.
Seven decades apart, two American rabbis, Benjamin Schultz and Jon Hausman (whose careers overlapped Lewis’ Methusaleh-like reign as a public intellectual), grasped and articulated the existential threats posed by Communist, or Islamic totalitarianism. For their gimlet-eyed, informed efforts, each rabbi in turn, across 70-years, was subjected to vitriolic attacks by their “peers” from the enduringly Leftist, craven, and witless American rabbinate.
Stoughton, Massachusetts Rabbi Jon Hausman–fluent in written and oral Arabic–is the sole U.S. rabbi willing to openly discuss the living legacies of Islamic jihadism, and antisemitism, and their rootedness, as he has noted, “in Islam’s sacralized texts dealing with Jews,” specifically, and non-Muslim infidels, more broadly. Contra Rabbi Hausman’s intrepid public discourse, not a single major figure from the American Jewish rabbinate has ever similarly identified–let alone challenged–mainstream Islam’s relentless propagation of canonical Islamic jihad, and Jew/non-Muslim infidel-hatred. Such cowardly, willfully blind silence is conjoined to Rabbi Hausman’s vilification–being condemned and made an outcaste, in November 2016, by the Massachusetts Board of Rabbis, none of whom share Hausman’s scholarly understandings of Islam, or his valor. Despite these ill-informed and unfair attacks by his fellow rabbis (see Hausman’s rebuttal, here), till now, Hausman has been able to maintain his position as Ahavath Torah synagogue’s rabbi, where he has served, with distinction, since …read more