LEADER TIMES WEEKEND RELIGION ARTICLE FOR
June 30, 2012 by William H. Scarle, Jr.
It is one of the most absurd accusations against Israel that has been made in recent times, namely that Israel is guilty of being an apartheid state. Several of our larger Christian communions have called for the divestment of stock in any company that deals with Israel because of the apartheid condition of the so called “Palestinians.” Anyone who knows anything about the Middle East and its social realities must scratch their head in unbelief at such a claim.
Simply stated there are no laws of discrimination in Israel against Arabs. Israeli Arabs enjoy more civil liberties than anywhere else in the Middle East. Interviews with Arabs living in Israel and in the “Palestinian territories” demonstrate that most would greatly prefer to live under Israel than any “Palestinian” state. It is very difficult, however, to make these testimonies public, or identify the persons involved, because of the fear of reprisal by Arab political forces.
Time and time again we are told that in any future “Palestinian” state no Jews will be permitted. In Moslem countries Jews and Christians have been systematically driven out. In the Middle East, where Christianity was born, the ancient communions of Christians are rapidly disappearing.
In the light of such accusations against Israel we can place the very ancient policies of Islam against unbelievers. Egypt has recently held elections and put in power a government chosen by the Moslem Brotherhood. One of the aims of the Brotherhood is to reinstate Sharia law which includes the rules of “dhimma.” “Dhimma” is an Arabic term which can be translated either as “protected” or “guilty.” It is used to describe the status of non-Muslims living in a Moslem land. Non-Moslems are not equal to Moslems under Sharia law. Below are listed a few of the rules that apply to non-Moslems living in a Moslem nation.
First of all they must pay a special tax called a “jizya” for the privilege of being protected in a Moslem nation. They must comply with all Moslem law if they are to remain safe. Their clothing must be distinctive, so as to identify them as non-believers. They are not to be greeted with the traditional “peace be with you” used to greet fellow Moslems. They must keep to the side streets, and step off the street to allow a Moslem to pass. They are forbidden to make any public display of their religious faith. They cannot pray aloud. They cannot read their scripture within the hearing of a Moslem. They cannot hold funerals or feast days in public. Any violation of these laws can be punished by death or being sold into slavery.
We have only just begun. These laws have been modified in modern times under the pressure of Western civilization. However, they are being revived by the so called “radical” Islamic movements such as the Moslem Brotherhood and Wahhabi Islam of Saudi Arabia.
In Moslem countries Sharia law forbids the building of any new church building or the repair of an existing church building. No church building can be higher than a mosque. There can be no public display of wine or pork. A non-Moslem is forbidden to marry a Moslem woman. Dhimmis are also strictly forbidden, on pain of death, to proselytize among Moslems.
We could go on, but enough has been said to demonstrate where apartheid exists in our time.
(Bill Scarle can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org).