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The Jew is Not My Enemy: Unveiling the Myths that Fuel Muslim Anti-Semitism [Hardcover]

Tarek Fatah
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 6 2010
A liberal Muslim and critically acclaimed author explores the historical, political, and theological basis for centuries of Muslim animosity towards Jews, debunking long-held myths and tracing a history of hate and its impact today.

More than nine years after 9/11 and 60 years after the creation of the state of Israel, the world is no closer to solving, let alone understanding, the psychological and political divide between Jews and Muslims. While countless books have been written on the subject of terrorism, political Islam, and jihad, barely a handful address the theological and historical basis of the Jew—Muslim divide. Following the terrorist attacks on Mumbai in November 2008, in which Pakistani jihadis sought out and murdered the members of a local Jewish centre, Tarek Fatah began an in-depth investigation of the historical basis for the crime.

In this provocative new book, Fatah uses extensive research to trace how literature from as early as the seventh century has fueled the hatred of Jews by Muslims. Fatah debunks the anti-Jewish writings of the Hadith literature, takes apart the Arab supremacist doctrines that lend fuel to the fire, and reinterprets supposed anti-Jewish passages in the Quran. In doing so he argues that hating Jews is against the essence of the Islamic spirit and suggests what needs to be done to eliminate the agonizing friction between the two communities.

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"A frank, humble, and courageous book."
— National Post

"Valuable and courageous."
— Library Journal

"Fatah's contribution to the dire need for Islamic moderation is timely and welcome."
— Winnipeg Free Press

"Among the book's delights is Fatah's independent and inquiring mind. In a field riddled with dogmatism, he offers fresh material and original insights."
— Toronto Star

About the Author

Journalist and political advocate TAREK FATAH is the founder of the liberal Muslim organization the Muslim Canadian Congress. He is a regular contributor and guest host on the morning show on Newstalk 1010. His first book, Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State, was a finalist for the Donner Prize.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended June 7 2014
A highly recommended work for every Muslim by a masterful historian and expert on Islam, clearing the misconception and propaganda that is force-fed into Muslims' minds all over the world by their political and religious leaders.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Every Muslim should read this book June 3 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Well written and revealing. I loved it. Should be compulsory reading for anyone interested in the Muslim faith. It should be compulsory reading for every Muslim.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant work of courage by a brave man Nov. 16 2010
Tarek Fatah's latest book "The Jew is Not My Enemy" should be required reading for every Muslim and should be translated in Arabic, Urdu, Persian and Turkish so that the hatred against Jews in the Muslim world is challenged. Until I read this book, I had always believed that Prophet Muhammad had massacred 700 Jews in cold blood and this had always bothered me as inconceivable. Thank God for Tarek Fatah to expose this false bravado inserted in Muslim dogma by medieval Arab caliphates.

I was also intrigued by the dedication of this book. I Tarek Fatah does not follow conventional wisdom and dedicate the book to his wife, parents or family. Instead, he brings up a character from the Second World War that the world has largely forgotten: A Muslim Princess from India, Noor Inayat Khan, known in the West as Nora Baker. I had known about this young Muslim woman "who did not have to die, but chose to give her life to defeat the nazis and bring an end to the Holocaust." I did not know Muslims died in Auschwitz. How many Muslims or Jews know this? Almost none.

This work of scholarship should be widely read by both Muslim and Jew. It is breezy read and chapter one, where Fatah documents the attack on a Jewish centre of Mumbai by Pakistani jihadis, reads more like a thriller than history. When the Muslims and Jews finally bury the hatchet, they should both tank this book for triggering that process.

If you have not read Fatah's his first book "Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State," I strongly recommend you get yourself a copy as it is almost sold out. The Mirage is a treasure for anyone wishing to understand the difference between a Muslim and an Islamist and why Islam and Islamism are at odds with each other.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why muslims not hate Jews Nov. 14 2010
"O Allah, Completely Destroy and Shatter the Jews" , As a person(African) who visit mosques regularly I have never been comfortable of listening the above prayer when some imams say. Every Muslim should read this book and understand why Muslims mustn't hate Jews or any other people/group.

The only reason some Muslims hate the Jews is because some religious leaders/imams from middle east has brainwashed them. I had a friend who grew up in Kuwait, and he had some antisemitism feelings. One day I have asked him why he has that feelings towards the Jews, and if they have done anything wrong to him/family or his country or whether there is anything religious abut having anti antisemitism. He took a pause and frankly told me no they haven't done anything wrong to him and he has never seen anything antisemitism in either the Quran or the Hadith(Saying of the prophet, peace be upon him). He stated that his school books in Kuwait were full of hatred toward the Jews.

I just come back from middle east and have seen a lot of hatred towards the Jews, and believe me, all has to do with the conflict between the Israel and the Palestinians/Arabs, and nothing to do with the Muslims and the Jews.

As a Muslim, I really thank the author for putting this to light.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Congratulations Nov. 24 2011
Congratulations! Alhumdulillah! Mazel Tov!This is a wonderful,long-needed exposé of a serious disease within the Islamic community.As a convert to Islam of some 33 years,of Jewish origins myself,I have come up against this anti-Semitism over and over again and it has often hurt my heart.I have,nevertheless,managed to preserve my faith because of the deeper and incontestable truths within the Islamic tradition something that Tarek Fatah appreciates as well.His analysis is well-researched and well thought-out and there is no doubt that Muslims, especially, have every interest in reading it.I hope it is translated into Arabic and Urdu and gets a a full hearing in those countries where there is so much misinformation and conspiracy theorizing on this subjec
I would like to add a couple of caveats however.Firstly,it is unfortunate that Tarek Fatah does not give enough attention to the spiritual wing of Islam-Sufism.It is somewhat ironic that he mentions Noor Inayat Khan and dedicates his book to her but forgets to mention that she is the daughter of Hazrat Inayat Khan who brought Sufism to the West and the sister of Pir Vilayat Khan who did so much work to spread Sufism in the West.I am the product of this tradition and it has been my path to and in Islam.As well,the Sufis have been combatting Islamic extremism well before the West even knew it existed.
Another point that would be very interesting for Muslims to consider is the timing logistics of the Quran-i.e.the Quran is revealed at the beginning of the Islamic tradition,by definition..God has 2500 years of Jewish history to commemt on and about 600 years of Christian hisatory.One can only imagine what He would say about Muslims now after 1500 years of Islamic history!
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