Throughout the Arab and Muslim world, protests and violence erupted in response to statements by Islamic leaders and heads of state about Israel's plans to construct a ramp at one of the entrances to the Muslim holy sites at Al Aksa compound in Jerusalem.
Israel's Mugrabi Gate Project: Incitement in the Muslim World
Posted: February 21, 2007
The following is a sampling of cartoons and quotations appearing in the Muslim and Arab press, and statements by leaders in the Muslim world, showing how the issue was used to incite violence and anger against Israel while perpetuating anti-Israel myths and anti-Semitic stereotypes.
Al-Ittihad, February 21, 2007 (United Arab Emirates)
Al-Madin, February 21, 2007 ( Saudi Arabia )
The cartoon's headline: "Excavations."
On the chair: "National Unity Government."
Tishrin, February 20, 2007 ( Syria )
At the bottom-right: " Iraq ."
Al-Ahram weekly, February 15-21, 2007 ( Egypt )
Al-Gumhuriyya, February 18, 2007 ( Egypt )
The cartoon's headline: "A Timed Bomb." The soldier is representing: "The occupation."
In Arabic, on the bomb: "Provocation."
Ash-Sharq al-Awsat, February 18, 2007 (United Kingdom)
Al-Watan, February 18, 2007 (Oman)
In Arabic: "Tomorrow."
Akhbar al-Khalij, February 17, 2007 (Bahrain)
Al-Hayat al-Jadida, February 17, 2007 (Palestinian Authority)
Ad-Dustur, February 17, 2007 (Jordan)
Al-Madin, February 17, 2007 (Saudi Arabia)
In Arabic: "Al-Aqsa excavations."
Al-Watan, February 15, 2007 (Oman)
Tishrin, February 15, 2007 (Syria)
Akhbar al-Yawm, February 14, 2007 (Egypt)
The cartoon's headline: "America is Asking Israel a Sensitive Deference in Al-Aqsa's Excavations." Bush is saying to Olmert: "Olmert, my brother – this is not the right way to do the excavations. When you excavate, do it quietly."
Tishrin, February 14, 2007 (Syria)
In Arabic: "Quest for traces."
Tishrin, February 14, 2007 (Syria)
Al-Bayan, February 13, 2007 (United Arab Emirates)
In Arabic: "The Arab Memory."
Al-Watan, February 13, 2007 (Oman)
Ar-Rai, February 12, 2007 (Jordan)
Al-Ghad, February 12, 2007 (Jordan)
In Arabic: "The Media's Admonitions."
"The Zionist regime was wrecking the wall of Al Aksa mosque in order to amend its embarrassing defeat in the 33 day war with Lebanon … the only way out of such plots and conspiracies was preserving the unity among the Muslims of the world."
Iranian government spokesman, Gholam Hussein Elham (paraphrased by the Iranian Student News Agency) February 12, 2007
Al Yaum, "Judaisation of Jerusalem ," February 12, 2007 ( Saudi Arabia )
Al-Ittihad, February 11, 2007 (United Arab Emirates)
Ad-Dustur, February 11, 2007 (Jordan)
The two Arabs on the right are saying: "May Allah be praised, Hamas and Fatah reached an agreement."
Ad-Dustur, February 11, 2007 ( Jordan )
Al-Watan, February 11, 2007 ( Qatar )
In Arabic: "Al-Aqsa."
Tishrin, February 10, 2007 ( Syria )
In Arabic, on the bomb: "The Middle East ."
Ar-Riyadh, February 9, 2007 (Saudi Arabia)
Al-Watan, February 9, 2007 ( Oman )
Tishrin, February 9, 2007 ( Syria )
In Arabic: "Excavations."
Al Wasat, February 9, 2007 ( Bahrain )
"The Arab and Islamic worlds must today prove they are worthy of protecting Al Aksa… consider today a day of anger in protest against what is being planned for Al Aksa."
Al Watan, February 9, 2007 (Saudi Arabia)
"The return of the resistance to the field of action to move the occupation away from the mosque [is] the first step towards ending it completely."
Ad-Dustur, February 9, 2007 ( Jordan )
Dar Al Hayat, February 9, 2007 ( Lebanon )
Ad-Dustur, February 9, 2007 ( Jordan )
"The bulldozers of the Zionist army have finally started the first phase of… the implementation of a major plan which in reality is seeking the transformation of the religious and Islamic fabric and build of the Al Aksa Mosque, and the construction of a Zionist temple in its place…
"That is to say a temple which on the basis of a historical justification provided by the orthodox Jewish rabbis, could be traced back to the era of Prophet David…
"Up to now, the wave of the opposition of the Muslims to these moves has effectively frustrated the plans by the Zionists to violate the sanctity of the Al Aksa Mosque and change its Islamic status and fabric. It is precisely for this reason that while their demolition plan encountered the barrage of stones and bullets of the Palestinians in the district, it also attracted the strong protest of the Muslim clerics and scholars, as well as the ordinary people of the Muslim countries….
Analysts believe that the process of the Zionist-isation (as in Judaisation) of the centers of Muslim civilization is currently going through its complementary stages, and the violation of the sanctity of the Al Aksa Mosque is the finishing line as far as that process is concerned."
Islamic Republic News Agency, February 8, 2007
"The Zionist regime always does something to cause tension and escalate hostility. Employing bulldozer at Al Aksa Mosque is an example of Israeli deeds….
"The United Nations should stop a group of people who lack identity and ethical values from perpetrating desecration against Al Quds Al Sharif [ Jerusalem ] and creating nuisance in the Middle East ."
Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, February 7, 2007
"The world of Islam should show a serious reaction to the Zionist regime's insult to Al Aksa Mosque [that will] make the Zionist regime regret its offensive act."
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's supreme leader, at a meeting with Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, secretary general of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, February 7, 2007
"Holy Al Aksa Mosque is to Judaize"
Headline for article in IPC, the Palestinian Authority's news agency, February 7, 2007
"Such a criminal attack against Al Aqsa Mosque, its walkway, gate and western wall forsakes more perilous threats to Al Aqsa mosque which the Israeli authorities work incessantly to harm it and complete its Judaising plot of occupied East Jerusalem ."
Joint statement by Mohammed Hussein, director of Al Aksa Mosque, Ikrima Sabri, head of the Supreme Muslim Council and Sheik Abdul Athim Salhab, head of the Islamic Waqf Council, February 7, 2007
"Such destruction is a springboard to take over holy Al Aksa mosque."
Mohammed Hussein, director of Al Aksa Mosque, February 7, 2007
The Israeli government is continuing a large-scale demolition project of ancient Islam in East Jerusalem's Old City . Al Aqsa Mosque is under grave danger of destruction in the face of Israeli Judaization of Jerusalem. …
Underneath the Mosque, Israeli excavations have rendered the foundation unstable while the notion that the Western Wall need be expanded at the expense of the Mosque is another falsehood akin to the necessity to put Jewish settlements in the area and build a synagogue. The Israeli government has long since campaigned to overtake the area using different methods."
Palestine News Network, February 7, 2007
"I have a stern warning for the enemy Sharon 's desecration of the Aqsa sparked the 2000 uprising. The Israeli leadership must learn from this lesson. We have confidence in our people, its masses, all of its groups and military wings."
Khaled Meshal, Hamas leader in Damascus, February 7, 2007
"This is an outrageous crime whose consequences and responsibility should be wholly imputed to Israel as a flagrant violation of international law, which explicitly prohibits an occupying force from desecrating or altering the religious and historical character of the lands under its occupation….
"[OIC is] orchestrating an Islamic initiative in order to counter the heinous aggressions being perpetrated by Israel against the Holy Al Aksa Mosque [and Jerusalem ]."
Organization of the Islamic Conference, February 7, 2007
"The wicked criminal gang in Tel Aviv has not refrained from igniting war after war and inciting one discord after another to realize its sick dreams of building its purported structure….
"It is this policy that is carried out by their brothers, the sons of monkeys and pigs among the Americans and their aides...in Iraq , until aggression reaches the demolition of the mosques and the minarets of guidance and the burning of the Koran and humiliating it with other repugnant acts. They are waging a fierce war against the servants of God to realize the lost security of Israel …
"We therefore denounce this vile criminal act and condemn it to the highest degree… We promise our people in Palestine that we will not abandon them… May God further strengthen and protect Al Aksa Mosque from the hands of the nonbelievers. The battle is one and the fate is one, as Baghdad was occupied for interests, the most important of which were the interests of the Jews."
Islamic Army in Iraq, an Iraqi insurgent group, February 6, 2007
"This is the United States' support which has given the Zionist regime of Israel the courage to destroy the wall of the Al-Aqsa Mosque."
Eshrat Shayeq, member of Iranian Islamic Consultative Assembly, February 6, 2007
Al Hayat, February 5, 2007 (Palestinian Authority)
"Travel to the Aksa Mosque in order to defend it against Jews."
Taysir Al-Tamimi, supreme judge for the Palestinian religious legislative council, February 3, 2007
"[Excavations were meant to] create a stranglehold around Al Aksa Mosque, in order for the Israeli establishment to fulfill its darkest dreams of building a Jewish Temple [in its place]."
Sheik Raad Salah, leader of the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel, January 22, 2007