Mughrabi dig prompts rise in Muslim antisemitism

Syrian regime does not distinguish between anti-Israel and anti-Semitic incitement.

anti-semitism cartoons (photo credit: )
anti-semitism cartoons
(photo credit: )
Opposition to the excavation at the Mughrabi Gate near the Temple Mount has sparked an increase in anti-Israel and anti-Semitic rhetoric in the Muslim world. According to the head of the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center in Glilot, the incitement coming out of Syria in particular, is "yet another example of anti-Semitic incitement in Syrian government-controlled media. "The Syrian regime makes no distinction between anti-Israel and anti-Semitic incitement," Col. Reuven Erlich (res.) told The Jerusalem Post. "The Syrians have been campaigning extensively against the excavations at the Mughrabi ramp to serve a greater purpose of promoting an anti-Israeli and anti-Zionist agenda before the world's eyes. "Over the weeks that the Mughrabi dig has been going on, the Syrians have been publishing anti-Semitic cartoons in their daily newspapers, which subsequently appeared on the Hamas Web site. The Syrian media, as well as the religious leadership in Damascus, have been broadcasting vehemently odious propaganda against Jews and the State of Israel. In a broadcast from Abdallah Rabih, the imam of the al-Uthmam Mosque in Damascus, he called for a "campaign for the liberation of the al-Aksa mosque" and for Syrians to "unite together and fight against Israel and the Jews," whom he described as a people who "break agreements and betray Allah and his prophet," Erlich said. "That is their religion, and their ancestors' religion, and that is their history. They take away our blood, our money and our dignity. Jews are Jews, wherever and whenever they are. Their hatred of peace is deeply rooted in their soul and their history - a history replete with abuse, aggression, bloodshed, slaughter, occupation and falsification," Erlich quoted Rabih as saying. Two weeks ago, Syrian television reported that Israel had destroyed several parts of the Temple Mount, which prompted thousands of protesters to take to the streets of Damascus. The protesters carried pictures of President Bashar Assad and models of Al-Aksa mosque. One of the Syrian government ministers who attended the demonstration told a television reporter that "Jerusalem is a red line. We shall not allow [the Jews], who killed the prophets, to also destroy Al-Aksa Mosque. Destroying the mosque is only the beginning, after which they will destroy the Church of the Nativity and other churches as well." According to Erlich, the Syrian campaign promotes violence toward Jews all around the world. If there is no distinction made between Jews and Israelis, Jews will continually be blamed for things Israelis do. "This is a phenomenon that we have noticed for a long time," he said. "It happened in the days of Hafez Assad, and it is happening with Bashar as well."