ICWV News Monitor 2020

Jewish community ‘emerging from the shadows’ in Dubai

A Jewish community in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is “emerging from the shadows” after flights to and from Israel began following this summer’s détente.

New prayer facilities have been springing up across Dubai and some kosher caterers said they had taken on new staff members to meet demand, as the Abraham Accords signed between Israel, the UAE and Bahrain ushers in change.

Speaking to France 24, Rabbi Levi Duchman said: “The Jewish community here comprises Jews from all over the world – Europe, Australia, America, New Zealand. Our community is really mixed.”

After the UAE lifted the ban on Israeli passport-holders entering the country, dozens of bilateral business deals have been agreed and relations have blossomed. 

Jeremy Cohen, a French citizen living in Dubai, said: “These agreements have changed everything. We’re less afraid to show ourselves.”

The arrival of the first Israeli tourists has led to hotels creating kosher kitchens as well as a sense of friendship. Solly Wolf, UAE Jewish community president, said: “People in the street now shout ‘Shalom, how are you?’”

Read more @ Times of Israel

Adjaye Associates, the London-based firm led by David Adjaye, has unveiled plans for a landmark project in the United Arab Emirates that includes a church, mosque, and synagogue. the development, known as ‘the Abrahamic family house’, will be located on Abu Dhabi’s Saadiyat island in close proximity to the Louvre Abu Dhabi.

Hagia Sophia and Cathedral of Córdoba: The Jihad Factor

What’s ours is ours; and what’s yours is ours, as well. This is one of the primary messages coming from Muslims following the recent decision to transform the Hagia Sophia museum—which was originally built, and for a millennium functioned, as a Christian cathedral—into a trophy mosque again. (. . .)

The message is clear: If the Hagia Sophia, which everyone knows was built and served as a cathedral for a thousand years can, without challenge, be transformed into a mosque—with sword waving imams to boot—surely the Cathedral of Córdoba, formerly the Grand Mosque, should be returned to a mosque.

But was it, in fact, originally built as a mosque, as so many claim, or was it, too, originally a conquered church?

In a recent Catholic World Report interview devoted to this question, Darío Fernández-Morera, an associate professor at Northwestern University, and author of The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise, provides much evidence to support the conclusion that “not only was the [Grand] mosque built on a Christian site, but it was also built using materials from the sixth century Christian building destroyed by Muslims in the ninth century.”

The interview is worth reading in its entirety, as it gives lots of detailed information on Islam’s historic treatment of churches.

Read more @ Middle East Forum

Turkey's leading imam, Ali Erbaş, brandishes a sword during his July 24 Friday sermon in Hagia Sofia

Outrage as UK school curriculum asks how Israel could be seen as cause of 9/11

A Key Stage 3 history textbook has been removed from sale after it was revealed that UK pupils were being asked to consider “how it could be argued” the creation of Israel was a long-term cause of the 9/11 attacks.

Elsewhere in the chapter it says that Al-Qaeda targeted the USA because “they believed it was leading a Christian-Jewish alliance to destroy Islam”.

The book, entitled “Understanding History: Key Stage 3: Britain in the Wider World, Roman Times–present,” was published by the Hachette UK-owned Hodder Education Group and was written for pupils aged 11 to 14.

The suggestion that Israel may be linked with the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Centre is an anti-Semitic trope often peddled by conspiracy theorists.

Read more @ cufi.org.uk