On February 21, a group of more than 1,000 Muslims gathered around a synagogue in Oslo, Norway to form a kind of protective shield in an act of solidarity and condemnation of an attack on a Danish synagogue the weekend before.
It’s wonderful. It’s Islamic. It’s everything the ummah should be doing.
It’s also everything we’ve always done for the greater part of the history of Muslim-Jewish relations.
Zionist organizations, such as StandWithUs, however, always jump on stories like this to further their narrative of the ever-present Muslim-Jewish conflict, the very conflict that they try to say is the reason for the tension in Palestine.
Far too many have fallen for it.
The Israel-Palestinian issue— not “conflict,” it was never an equal-sided “conflict”— is, and always has been, a settler-colonial issue, a matter of yet another case of European imperialism. White Europeans came over to take the land of a people of color, persecute those people of color, humiliate them, kill them, torture them, and do their best to destroy their society. They disguised it as a holy war, a religious calling.
But this was never between Muslims and Jews. If it were, Palestinian Christians wouldn’t be just as persecuted, churches vandalized all the same, and African and Arab Jews would not be treated as second-class citizens in Israel.
Palestinian Christians face the same discriminatory laws as their Muslim counterparts, and those living in the West Bank and Gaza are often prevented by the Israel government from visiting their holy sites in Jerusalem. Dozens of churches and monasteries have been attacked or subjected to arson attacks or racist threats graffitied on them.
Arab Jews are often pushed to live in the remotest parts of Israel, in “developing towns” that were never developed. African Jews and non-Jews were often taken in by Israel under the guise of asylum, but they’ve found themselves no better off. They are segregated into different schools, just as Palestinians are, and 52% live below the poverty line (compared to 16% of the general Jewish Israeli population). Israeli officials have repeatedly made remarks regarding taking care of their African “problem,” and attacks against Africans regardless of religious affiliation are also an issue.
This co-opting of events such as the Muslim human shield in Oslo by Zionist organizations is nefarious at best. Their consistent and persistent push for the “why can’t we all just get along?” narrative ignores reality and encourages others to the same. Sadly, it has been successful thus far. Organizations such as the Muslim Leadership Initiative have fallen for this narrative, organizing political tours in which young Muslim leaders travel to Israel in order to “understand” the Zionist perspective. This is normalization at its finest, and a bare attempt to build acceptance of a racist ideology that continues to attempt to destroy an entire people.
The issue of Israel and Palestine is not one of religion. There is no issue between Muslims and Jews that wasn’t created by Europeans in an attempt to distract from their true purpose of colonization and racial oppression. We will always shield our innocent Jewish brothers and sisters, because that was never a problem. But we shouldn’t allow them to use it in order to confuse what is still unarguably, irrevocably apartheid.