Islamism and Jew-hatred

According to Matthias Küntzel

Prior to September 11th my written work was largely concerned with German antisemitism i.e. the examination of the ideological roots of the Holocaust. Therefore, it was not very difficult for me to find the traces of antisemitism in the 9/11 attacks. I subsequently learned that the organization from which Al Qa’ida sprang – the Muslim Brotherhood – was founded in 1928: Almost precisely when Fascism and National Socialism emerged. This fact enhanced my interest and I began to systematically research the literature that was available then. A year later I published my book, the objective of which is limited: I discuss the inner and outer factors which produced Islamism during the 1930s. I pursue the development of Islamism from the 1930s to the present. I discuss the role which antisemitism plays within radical Islam and I try to figure out why many in the Arab world still venerate Hitler and deny the Holocaust.


Islamists fights against those Muslims who have been supposedly “corrupted” by the West and thus have been diverted from the “true” path of Islam; the path established in 7th century Islam. Thus, they take up the Wahhabite tendency. While Wahhabism, however, attached most significance to the observation of their strict rules of theology and avoided to get in touch with Europeans, Islamism from the outset formed a revolutionary mass movement. The founding members of the Muslim Brotherhood were industrial workers of the Suez Canal Company. Their political program was aimed at the inconsistencies of a modern industrialized society. Their style of campaigning had more in common with 20th century fascism and communism than with the Wahhabites.

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Also according to Matthias Küntzel

The idea of using suicide pilots to obliterate the skyscrapers of Manhattan originated in 1940s Berlin.

“In the latter stages of the war, I never saw Hitler so beside himself as when, as if in a delirium, he was picturing to himself and to us the downfall of New York in towers of flame,” wrote Albert Speer in his diary. “He described the skyscrapers turning into huge burning torches and falling hither and thither, and the reflection of the disintegrating city in the dark sky.”

Not only Hitler’s fantasy but also his plan of action foreshadowed September 11: He envisioned having kamikaze pilots fly light aircraft packed with explosives and with no landing gear into Manhattan skyscrapers. The drawings for the Daimler-Benz Amerikabomber from the spring of 1944 show giant four-engine planes with raised undercarriages for transporting small bombers. The bombers would be released shortly before the planes reached the East Coast, after which the mother plane would return to Europe.

Hitler’s rapture at the thought of Manhattan in flames indicates his underlying motive: not merely to fight a military adversary, but to kill all Jews everywhere. Possessed of the notion that the whole of the Second World War was a struggle against an imaginary Jewish enemy, he deemed “the USA a Jewish state” and New York the center of world Jewry. “Wall Street,” as a popular book published in Munich in 1919 put it, “is, so to speak, the Military Headquarters of Judas. From there his threads radiate out across the entire world.” From 1941 on, Hitler pushed to get the bombers into production, in order to “be able to teach the Jews a lesson in the form of terror attacks on American metropolises.” Towards the end of the war this idea became an obsession.

Sixty years later, it so happens, the assault on the World Trade Center was coordinated from Germany.

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According to Frank Furedi

The cumulative impact of decoupling the Holocaust from its association with the Jewish experience is to encourage a cynical, questioning attitude towards Jewish victimhood; it inflames an interrogation of the status of Jews as the victims of the Nazi experience. There is evidence that the association of Jewishness with war crimes today is used to read history backwards, so that this people comes to bear responsibility for what happened during the Holocaust. According to one interesting study of anti-Semitism in Europe, prejudices are ‘projected backwards to justify behaviour towards Jews in past conflicts’. The study says that ‘in this context, anti-Semitic arguments today frequently serve the purpose of rejecting guilt and responsibility for the persecutions of the Jews [in the past]’ (13). This approach is most notable in societies that were deeply implicated in the persecution of Jews during the Second World War; according to various surveys, the idea that Jews were responsible for their own persecution was supported by 30 per cent of respondents in Russia, 27 per cent in the Ukraine, 35 per cent in Belarus, 31 per cent in Lithuania, and 17 per cent in Germany in 2004 (14).

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According to Yuri Slezkine

There is no word for “anti-Sinicism” in the English language, or indeed in any other language except Chinese (and even in Chinese, the term, paihua, is limited in use and not universally accepted). The most common way to describe the role–and the fate–of Indonesia’s Chinese is to call them “the Jews of Asia.” And probably the most appropriate English (French, Dutch, German, Spanish, Italian) name for what happened in Jakarta in May 1998 is “pogrom,” the Russian word for “slaughter,” “looting,” “urban riot,” “violent assault against a particular group,” which has been applied primarily to anti-Jewish violence. There was nothing unusual about the social and economic position of the Jews in medieval and early modern Europe, but there is something remarkable about the way they have come to stand for service nomadism wherever it may be found. All Mercurians represented urban arts amid rural labors, and most scriptural Mercurians emerged as the primary beneficiaries and scapegoats of the city’s costly triumph, but only the Jews–the scriptural Mercurians of Europe–came to represent Mercurianism and modernity everywhere. The Age of Universal Mercurianism became Jewish because it began in Europe.

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  1. According to George Gilder

    As Maxim Gorky put it: “Whatever nonsense the anti-Semites may talk, they dislike the Jew only because he is obviously better, more adroit, and more capable of work than they are.”


  2. According to this

    The holocaust was a European crime that cannot be explained solely by the special circumstances of German history. The Nazi monsters relied on eager voluntary help from throughout Europe.


  3. According to Frederick W. Kagan

    This is the defining characteristic of al Qaeda’s ideology, which is properly called “takfirism” (even though al Qaeda fighters do not use the term). The word “takfir” designates the process of declaring a person to be an unbeliever because of the way he practices his faith. Takfir violates the religious understanding of most of the world’s Muslims, for the Koran prescribes only five requirements for a Muslim (acknowledgment of the oneness of God, prayer, charitable giving, the fast, and the pilgrimage to Mecca) and specifies that anyone who observes them is a Muslim. The takfiris insist that anyone who obeys a human government is a polytheist and therefore violates the first premise of Islam, the shahada (the assertion that “There is no god but God”), even though Muslims have lived in states with temporal rulers for most of their history. The chief reason al Qaeda has limited support in the Muslim world is that the global Muslim community overwhelmingly rejects the premise that anyone obeying a temporal ruler is ipso facto an unbeliever.

    See also the Amman Declaration.


  4. According to Bryan Appleyard

    This supports one of the central arguments of Malik’s book: that Islamism is not, as some lazily say, a reversion to a pre-medieval world-view. Would that it were. There was never an Islam like that of Khomeini or Al-Qaeda; these are specifically modern movements. To this should be added the now well-established fact that the vast majority of Muslim terrorists come from the educated middle class, the sort of people who understand and can use modernity.


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