Mona Eltahawy on Yusuf al-Qaradawi

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not a Muslim issue. It is a dispute over land, it is about an occupation that must end and it is about a people who deserve a state. But it is not a religious dispute. Clerics, rabbis, priests and any one else who claims religious authority for his opinion should stay out of it. As a Muslim, I’m particularly eager to keep our clerics away from Palestine.

For too long the easiest Friday sermon to give began and ended by cursing the “Zionists”, often interchanging Zionist with Jew, stopping along the way to enflame the worshippers with news of the latest humiliations or atrocities committed by the Israelis against the Palestinians.

The conflict has been one of the most jumped upon bandwagons in both the Arab and the Muslim world – but framing it in religious terms serves no one’s interest, least of all the Palestinians. With the Islamist Hamas at the helm of the Palestinian government the temptation is great to lose ourselves in the religious kaleidoscope they would love to wrap around the conflict. But just as Islamists are more about power than religion, so is the conflict less about religion than land.

Mona Eltahawy, Qaradawi Damages Palestine’s Cause by Turning Global Issue Into Islamist Weapon, muslimwakeup.com

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