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April 17, 2014 / 17 Nisan, 5774
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Listen to Me: Islam Does Not Command War Against Jews

Let me clarify these misconceptions about Islam so that there is no excuse for warmongers and those who wish to shed oceans of blood.
Turkish political and religious commentator Sinem Tezyapar.

Turkish political and religious commentator Sinem Tezyapar.

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In an op. ed. piece for the Jewish Press, I cited from the Qur’an to show that war is an exceptional matter for Muslims, an unwanted obligation to be fulfilled in limited circumstances, and for defensive purposes only.

In response, I’ve been denounced and accused of being a Trojan horse, the wolf trying to devour Little Red Riding Hood, of not being a Muslim or being the worst kind of liar, misguided, deceiver, of practicing taqiyya, of disseminating propaganda with the intention of deceiving Israelis & Westerners, of using jihadist tactics in disguise, etc.

The most moderate reaction has been that I am young, naive… and don’t know my religion and the real world.

Despite the criticism, I stand behind my words, and I say further that Hamas or any other Islamic group that uses violence against civilians is doing wrong according to the Qur’an and that Jews, Christians, and Muslims must and can live co-exist together in harmony and peace. The reactions to my statements have been along the following lines: “What about the jihad verses in Qur’an? What about taqiyyah? What about abrogation of the verses which counsel peace?”

Let me clarify these misconceptions about Islam so that there is no excuse for warmongers and those who wish to shed oceans of blood.

War and violence in the Holy Books - Admittedly, there are commandments about war in the Qur’an, and those verses pertain to self-defense. The Tanakh and the Gospel also contain provisions about war and violence, and there are verses full of killing, especially in the Torah. The passages about war in those are, just as with the Qur’an, in regard to self-defense. The Torah and the Gospel command peace and love, and contain commandments about love and affection too. A person of love will interpret that in one way, and a cruel person in another. One can interpret it truly if one looks at it sincerely. For instance the Gospel speaks of blood up to the manes of the horses; it speaks of nobody being saved apart from 144,000 Jews. These are actually metaphorical and must be elucidated within the general tone of the Gospel, which is one of love and affection prevailing. But if someone insists on interpreting it in terms of violence, if he adds additional things to it out of his own mind, then a climate of violence will of course ensue. But a real Jew or a real Christian would never murder innocent people simply because there exists verses regarding killings in their Holy Books. In the same way, people who will look at Islam and the Qur’an through the eyes of love will not come up with violent interpretations.

Dictators against Prophets’ divine message - Let us not forget that the Prophet Mohammed was a prophet who sought to spread the pure faith of the Prophet Abraham, which is faith in God, the One and Only and ascribing no equals to Him, in a pagan society which had been dominated by idol worship. Like many prophets whose names appear in the Tanakh, the Prophet Mohammad has been commissioned for transmitting the message of God. It was impossible for the prophets to make any concessions on this, and they carried the true message, even at the cost of their own lives, to the most extreme leaders of their times and the most perverse communities. Conveying this message sometimes meant to oppose the tyrant Nimrod, as in the case of the Prophet Abraham, and sometimes to oppose dictators such as Pharaoh, as with the Prophet Moses. At all such times, believers found opposition from people who sought to take their lives. Despite circumstances where no one enjoyed freedom of expression, all the prophets communicated God’s message without regard to the cost. And this is no different in Islam as well.

War (qital) and jihad are not the same - The basic claim of the accusations and reactions trying to portray Islam as violent -God forbid- is that there are verses about jihad in the Qur’an and that these speak of killing. First and foremost, jihad and war are entirely different concepts: Jihad is not synonymous with holy war, as some misguided people think. Jihad means rather exertion, which is to strive, to make effort toward some object identified to the will of God as revealed in the Qur’an. Some worthy objects of jihad include strife against one’s egoistic passions, or to make an intellectual challenge against irreligion, radicalism or fanaticism. One convinces people with scientific and intellectual evidence. To expose the signs of God’s existence, to convey His revelation, to explain the malice of atheistic ideologies etc… These are the legitimate objects of the “jihad” for a Muslim, not beating someone about the head, killing someone or forcing a person to embrace Islam as an act of coercion.

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About the Author: Sinem Tezyapar is an executive producer on Turkish Television. She is a political and religious commentator and a peace activist. She can be reached on Facebook, and Twitter.


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197 Responses to “Listen to Me: Islam Does Not Command War Against Jews”

  1. Chaiya Eitan says:

    Why are infidels throughout the world being murdered by Muslims? It doesn't really matter to us if they are 'true Muslims' or not. They are acting in the name of Islam.

  2. Alan Kardon says:

    Sinem I hope you can get your point across to the Jihadists and Hamas. You will do a great service to your people. If millions who follow Islam believe what you say than we have hope. Wishing you much success in explaining it to THEM.

  3. Angela Sessions says:

    Thank you for the enlightened article. I have always suspected your interpretation of Islam is correct, and truly wish there are more like you in the world. It would surely be a better place. Thanks again Sinem.

  4. Roc Diaz says:

    yea ok, sinem and her friends seem nice and benevolent, but in the end they would certainly agree to making all nations bow to islam, which is not to be. they will be defeated and forced to leave israel in peace. the muslims are violent and are permitted to lie and steal from a non muslim, even to take "non believers" as slaves. the israelis should start to play hard ball and clear out hevron and ramallah, its israeli land. we should push the gazans into egypt and jordan and take back our boarders according to what G-d has alloted us in the torah. we might not be able to do it all right now, but soon when the Redeemer comes forth from the north.

  5. Roc Diaz says:

    is coleman a jewish name, are you jewish by origin?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Sinem Tezyapar is not only wrong, she's apostate! Of course she may simply be lying. Muslims do that. And thieve loot rob rape maim murder and diddle kiddies like their psychopath prophet! And why is she inviting rape? Get thee into a burka!

  7. Roc Diaz says:

    its a bunch of b.s. all what the mulslims what to do is fight and take over and impose their soveriegnty over others. its fine if the rest of the world wants it which is what seems to be the case as america has elected one for president a mear 10 after the twin towers episode. the israelis however dont want anymore of your crap, get off our land please and leave us in peace.

  8. Sinem Tezyapar is a very pretty woman but in her case beauty and brains don't go together.

  9. Tim Upham says:

    You know that, I know that, but tell the Jewish extremists that. The Qu'ran refers to both Jews and Christians as the People of the Book, who supplied the Scriptures. The Qu'ran will say those who violate the Sabbath is a despicable ape, not that jews are despicable apes, but only those who violate the Sabbath. An Orthodox rabbi can call you that, but how many of the Jewish extremists even go to a synagogue and follow the mitzvot of what is commanded on Shabbat?

  10. The Muslim attitude toward Jews is reflected in various verses throughout the Koran, the holy book of the Islamic faith. "They [the Children of Israel] were consigned to humiliation and wretchedness. They brought the wrath of God upon themselves, and this because they used to deny God's signs and kill His Prophets unjustly and because they disobeyed and were transgressors" (Sura 2:61). According to the Koran, the Jews try to introduce corruption (5:64), have always been disobedient (5:78), and are enemies of Allah, the Prophet and the angels (2:97­98).

  11. Grace Acosta says:

    Görkem Erdoğan , what planet do you live on? It must be very nice there. Back here on Earth, things are much different.

  12. Grace Acosta says:

    Why is this woman being given an audience on the Jewish Press? Let her go peddle her daydreams to Al Jazeera, and see how many people agree with her there.

    I'm sure this will all be news to the Taliban, and they will be ever so grateful and relieved to hear that they can lay down arms and take up stamp collecting.

  13. Rosalyn Chatt says:

    FYI, Jews do not refer to Abraham or Moses or David as a prophets. So referring to them in that way, especially in a Jewish publication indicates that you have appropriated Judaism without actually absorbing Judaism accurately. That's rude. Furthermore, to expect Jews to accept Islam's repurposing of Jewish figures is disturbing, regardless of your so called peaceful intentions.

    I'm not an expert on Islam but what I have learned from reading and listening to lectures is that Muslims consider Islam to be the final revelation of G-d and the goal is that Islam should rule the world, not be equal to other religions. According to the Qur'an Jews corrupted the Torah and Christians are misled by believing in the trinity and Christ's divinity, and both groups are banned to eternal hell fire unless they accept Allah and Mohammed as his prophet. Furthermore, according to Islam, since the Qur'an was a direct transmission to Mohammed by the angel Gabriel it can not be changed or modernized or interpreted according to personal whims. The Qur'an is not considered divinely inspired but the word of G-d. Islam is Islam. Sinem, it's not my place to tell you how to practice your faith, but please don't try to mislead people that what you are saying is authentic or mainstream Islam.

    I do hope that Islam can be reformed by well intentioned Muslims who prefer to live in peace and recognize the spiritual paths of other people as equally valid.

  14. Rosalyn Chatt says:

    FYI, Jews do not refer to Abraham or Moses or David as a prophets. So referring to them in that way, especially in a Jewish publication indicates that you have appropriated Judaism without actually absorbing Judaism accurately. That's rude. Furthermore, to expect Jews to accept Islam's repurposing of Jewish figures is disturbing, regardless of your so called peaceful intentions.

    I'm not an expert on Islam but what I have learned from reading and listening to lectures is that Muslims consider Islam to be the final revelation of G-d and the goal is that Islam should rule the world, not be equal to other religions. According to the Qur'an Jews corrupted the Torah and Christians are misled by believing in the trinity and Christ's divinity, and both groups are banned to eternal hell fire unless they accept Allah and Mohammed as his prophet. Furthermore, according to Islam, since the Qur'an was a direct transmission to Mohammed by the angel Gabriel it can not be changed or modernized or interpreted according to personal whims. The Qur'an is not considered divinely inspired but the word of G-d. Islam is Islam. Sinem, it's not my place to tell you how to practice your faith, but please don't try to mislead people that what you are saying is authentic or mainstream Islam.

    I do hope that Islam can be reformed by well intentioned Muslims who prefer to live in peace and recognize the spiritual paths of other people as equally valid.

  15. In a few weeks Norway will be "Judenrein". The last 819 Jews still living in Norway are now leaving the country due to the rise of anti-Semitism.

    Thus Norway becomes the first European country in which Jews will no longer.
    live. A similar development can be observed in all the European countries.

    When one hears nowadays reports regarding the terrorist attack against Jews.
    in Bulgaria one does not know that Jews in Europe are subject to.
    anti-Semitic manifestations daily.

    The Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten reported In February 2012 about the.
    departure of Jews from the country. Anne Sender, the head of the Jewish.
    community in Norway , once said: "Many immigrants brought anti-Semitism from.
    their countries. The shame is in that nobody speaks out against them." The.
    waves of Muslim immigrants bring anti-Semitism back to Europe. A similar
    development is taking place in the neighboring country, Sweden , and in all.
    the European countries. The Muslims are the ones who drive away the Jews.
    everywhere.

  16. In a few weeks Norway will be "Judenrein". The last 819 Jews still living in Norway are now leaving the country due to the rise of anti-Semitism.

    Thus Norway becomes the first European country in which Jews will no longer.
    live. A similar development can be observed in all the European countries.

    When one hears nowadays reports regarding the terrorist attack against Jews.
    in Bulgaria one does not know that Jews in Europe are subject to.
    anti-Semitic manifestations daily.

    The Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten reported In February 2012 about the.
    departure of Jews from the country. Anne Sender, the head of the Jewish.
    community in Norway , once said: "Many immigrants brought anti-Semitism from.
    their countries. The shame is in that nobody speaks out against them." The.
    waves of Muslim immigrants bring anti-Semitism back to Europe. A similar
    development is taking place in the neighboring country, Sweden , and in all.
    the European countries. The Muslims are the ones who drive away the Jews.
    everywhere.

  17. Perfect piece, congratulations. But I think it also needs to emphasize that people need to open their eyes and see that thier hunger for hatred will take them nowhere. It baffles me to see that people hatefully respond to a piece calling for peace. How can they ever justify that? So I think, Sinem you need to focus on that hateful state of mind too, and maybe you can show them how to overcome their prejudices. People wake up! You were not born to hate, God created you to love.

  18. Liad Bar-el says:

    Yori, I am sure that the Sephardic Jews of Yemen thought as you back in the years of 1172 when they were loosing Jews and having great troubles. They asked the Rambam for help and he did and saved them from their troubles. The Rambam wrote a formal didactic (teaching) letter to the Yemenite Jews in 1172 informing them that Muhammad and his predecessor, Jezeus, are false prophets and insane. If someone says otherwise and makes you believe otherwise then you are right back in the same situation of 1172 but it has become worse because you are influencing many more people on an international basis with the internet.

  19. Amir Ahmad says:

    The very first muslim migration took place because the non-believers did not want muslims to preach Islam in Makkah. If the non-believers had let the muslims continue following their newly found reliigion Islam, they were afraid masses would convert to be muslims seeing the way muslims behaved so well. And the very first war Badar took place because non-believers did not want muslims to flourish in Madinah and attract more people towards Islam.

    Islam does NOT order killings of any non-muslims, unless they attack muslims. And even then there is no killing of women, oldies and children. Only fighters have to be fought against.

    I believe that if muslims demonstrate in Europe and Americas how to live peacefully and in true Islam spirit, people there will quickly convert to Islam. My persona belief is that Islam starts where humanity reaches its height. Provided the muslims live as per Allah's way as shown by the holy prophet. Mere naming themselves as Muslims, but acting against Islam is not going to bring good name to Islam and muslims.

  20. she looks just like salome who danced for the king to ask for John the Baptist head on a platter as her reward.

  21. אהובה ירבה says:

    Be careful about these people , this "Blonde" Sinem are part of a group following Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya) a controversial Turkish Muslim Guru .
    Tamar Yonah made a very good interview with one of them debunking their final agenda 1 week ago .

    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/163731#.UOprjG9PgmU

  22. Chaiya Eitan says:

    Turkey will take charge of the region??? They were kicked out by the British! What a joke….. I don't understand how it is that this woman hasn't been targeted yet….

  23. אהובה ירבה says:

    It's a group , not only this woman, they have their own channel in Turkey A9
    http://en.a9.com.tr/

    They are starting to publish articles in Jewish internet news papers , Jerusalem Post, Arutz Sheva , Time of Israel etc……. many are believing their lunacies on this "Peaceful" Turkish Islamic Union .

  24. And there is no point in claiming otherwise because they have the right to live as unbelievers as God says there is no compulsion in religion. So if you don't believe in the Koran you are a nonbeliever, that is so stupid. Besides there is no God and if there was where has he been for the last 3000 years while millions have died in the name of religion. Irags killing Irags, same in Afghanistan, sorry it seems Muslims are the root of evil. Again there is no God, you just belong to a cult.

  25. Yehuda Cohen says:

    Yori Yanover, it is good that your Orthodox friend sent you this email for otherwise he would be embarrassed to publish his name after showing such ignorance of Torah and Judaism. It’s been proven that not all Orthodox raised children remain Orthodox as can be seen from your friends’ email. Granted not all of us have the time to study Torah and do what we study so that we do not lose what we have studied. Neither do we have the time and interest to study other religions and learn how they might impact our lives and those of our loved ones; so, we rely on our sages knowledge to help guide us through the many unknowns in our lives. When a sage, such as the Rambam for instance, stated that a certain man, Muhammed, is a false prophet and insane, it would behoove us to stay far away from him and his followers. Maybe we don’t have what it takes to intellectually fight against this false prophet and his followers but the Rambam does have “the CHUTZPAH to tell this Turkish intellectual that we know HER religion better than herself and her friends”. The Rambam was closer to HaShem than any one of us; so, to follow the Rambam’s advice is not “an arrogant approach” as your friend termed it but rather a very wise and humble approach.

    Your friend asked: “Have we fallen in love with being hated and terrorized?” It seems that your friend is tired of being hated and terrorized much like Olmert was tired of fighting and winning wars; so, he made sure that Israel didn’t win any more wars much like your friend would believe the Islamists than fight them so long as there is some delicious lavishly looking sex pot to give him his daily dose of ego pills and testosterone evocations during his present day male menopause stage of life.

  26. Yehuda Cohen says:

    It is forbidden in Judaism to proselytize; so why are Islamists proselytizing here on the Jewish Press?

  27. Please stop calling evil good. Your blindness and twisted logic is nausiating.

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