By Rabbi Yair Hoffman

This week an op-ed appeared in Time Magazine written by Qasim Rashid, the national spokesperson for Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA.  The op-ed was an attack on the Pamela Geller led ad campaign in Washington that is trying to stop US aid to anti-Jewish Islamic countries.  But whether one agrees or not with Pam Geller, the op-ed was so disturbing that Nancy Gibbs the editor of Time Magazine should apologize.

Rashid writes that it is a myth that Islam promotes Jew-hatred and claims that nothing in the Quran or in the actions of the “Prophet of Islam” supports the myth of “Islamic Jew hatred.”

Rashid cites a verse in the Quran which he claims has been taken out of context.  He then contrasts the newly explained understanding of the Quranic verses with verses in the Christian bible that he claims are even more anti-Semitic and the words of Martin Luther against the Jews.  Rashid then quotes an anti-Semitic statement from Pope Clement the VIII, discusses the murder of Jews in the Crusades and the Inquisition, and then writes that Hitler identified as a Christian.  He then cites an ADL report that anti-Semitism is growing in Europe and the United States.   Rashid concludes the Time Magazine op-ed with a call for a stop to the funding of these ads and that the people funding it should find something else to spend their money on.

The op-ed is quite disturbing for a number of reasons.   The first reason is that the op-ed is permeated with dishonesty not just in its apologetics.  Ray Comfort is the author of Hitler, G-d & the Bible.  He says (,  Adolf Hitler was the nastiest, most hate-filled, almost wickedest man in history, and to say that he was a Christian is to be tremendously ignorant, or to be disingenuous.”

In 1938, Nazi leader Alfred Rosenberg, a member of Hitler’s inner circle, stated at the Nuremberg Congress of 1938, “I am absolutely clear in my own mind, and I think I can speak for the Fuhrer as well, that both the Catholic and Protestant churches must vanish from the life of our people.”

Hitler Youth leader Baldur von Schirach said, “The destruction of Christianity was explicitly recognized as a purpose of the national socialist movement.”

Hitler also developed a 30-point plan for the new “National Reich Church,”  published in The New York Times in 1942.  Three of those rules were:

  • No pastors, chaplains or priests were allowed to speak in church…. only National Reich orators.
  • All Bibles and pictures of saints were removed from the church altars and replaced with copies of Mein Kampf.
  • The cross was also removed and replaced with the swastika.

For Rashid to write that Hitler identified as a Christian and that these words should be published in the pages of Time Magazine is very disturbing.   It is one thing to explain and seek a deeper understanding of Islam.  But to defend Islam by connecting Hitler to Christianity is quite another.

Let’s move on.  The quote of Pope Clement the VIII is accurate.  But why was the link to the quote from a notoriously anti-Semitic  website?  In other words, why is Time Magazine linking to a website that writes the following about Jews?

The Jews are the only people in the world who have found hostility in every country in which they settled in any numbers. The big question is — WHY?

Today it is taught in the schools that “Anti-Semitism” began in Germany in the 1930s after which they were deported. What is not studied is the fact that at one time or other the Jews have been expelled from every nation in Europe! When the Jews first began to immigrate to America the early colonialists in New York, Charleston and Savannah tried to ban their entry..

The Jews claim that they are “only” a religion. The truth is that the Jews are a RACE.. Every race has inherited traits. In the case of the Jews they include trading, money-changing, usury, and a loathing for “productive labor” which is scorned as beneath the dignity of the Jews in their “bible” called “THE TALMUD.”

The Jews have not changed since the days when JC took up a whip and drove “the money changers out of the Temple.” Jews have always united to form monopolies. Today they control all the department store chains and specialty shops along with the lucrative jewelry and animal fur trade. Jews dominate the fields of all precious metals such as gold, silver, platinum, tin, lead, etc. They will always ban together to drive Gentile competitors out of business.

Today America is being flooded with Jewish immigrants from Russia and even 20,000 per year leave Israel for the U. S. — all with dollar signs in their eyes. Jews have used their vaunted money-power to seize control of the Democratic Party and constitute over 50% of all its financial contributions. Today they are buying up more and more major U. S. companies. While only 3% of the population, the Jews control over 25% of the nation’s wealth and this percentage rises every year. They are the only racial group totally organized to work for political domination over America.

There is more, but Time Magazine certainly has some explaining to do for linking to a Nazi-like site just to buttress a quote that could have been found on Wikipedia or even the Catholic sites.  What was Rashid doing perusing this site?

And now let’s discuss Rashid’s scholarship.  Is he correct to state that such statements as Jews are “Pigs and Monkeys” have been taken out of context?  Is the Time Magazine op-ed a whitewash?  The answer is a bit more nuanced.  It is correct that the pigs and monkeys reference are made about a specific group of Jews, but it is also clear that Mohammed truly believed that “Allah” physically changed those Jews.  This belief found elsewhere in the Quran is not cited by Rashid.  Later on in his life he also had massacred Jews and eliminated them from Arabia.  All this is neither mentioned nor addressed by Rashid indicating that the Time Magazine op-ed is a whitewash.

There is no question that Pam Geller’s ads are understandably disturbing to Muslims and should be countered.  However, it must be done honestly and without disingenuous tactics that unfairly attack Christianity and Judaism.  It should address the points honestly and with integrity.  Jewish tradition teaches that the seal of G-d is Truth.  This is a lesson not just for Jews or for people of all faiths, but also for the editors of Time.

The author can be reached at yairhoffman2@gmail.comnancy-gibbs


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