Antisemitism in Pakistan

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Antisemitism in Pakistan refers to the dislike, fear or hostility in attitude against Jewish people and the Judaism religion in Pakistan. There are general stereotypes against Jews in Pakistan, most of which overlap and are related to the common antisemitic views prevalent in the Muslim world. Due to the Palestine dispute, Pakistan, like many Muslim countries, has no diplomatic relations with Israel and has refused to recognise it as an independent state.

Jews are regarded as miserly.[1] The founding of the Islamic state of Pakistan immediately prior to the creation of Israel in the Levant created insecurity among Jews in Pakistan. After Israel's independence in 1948, violent incidents occurred against Pakistan's small Jewish community of about 2,000 Bene Israel Jews. The Magain Shalome Synagogue in Karachi was attacked, as were individual Jews. The persecution of Jews resulted in their exodus via India to Israel (see Pakistanis in Israel), the UK, Canada and other countries. The Peshawar Jewish community ceased to exist[2] although a small community reportedly still exists in Karachi. The people of North Pakistan and Afghanistan even being conservative Islam are aware of their own cultural background and the Pathan, Punjabi, Sindhi ethnicities in Muslim society have a high culture and always respected the Jewish culture through the ages. Many dark skinned Muslims originally from Bihar and Tamil Nadu have shown signs of extremism after the partition of India 1947 in Pakistan North area and Afghanistan.

Pakistani cricket icon and politician Imran Khan's marriage to Jemima Goldsmith, an Englishwoman of Jewish origin, in 1996 caused furor in Pakistan and Khan was accused of acting as an agent of the Jewish Lobby. Egyptian newspapers in Pakistan made other antisemitic accusations against Khan. After Khan complained, the stories were retracted.[2]

Arch rival India's establishment of diplomatic relations with Israel in 1992 have given rise to antisemitism in Pakistani media, usually combined with anti-Zionist rhetoric. India has been referred to as a "Zionist Threat".[3]

Pakistan-based Islamist group Lashkar-e-Toiba have also expressed antisemitic views. They have declared the Jews to be "Enemies of Islam", Israel to be the "Enemy of Pakistan".[4]

Military leaflets have been dropped over Waziristan to urge the tribesmen to beware of foreigners and their local supporters who had allied themselves with the "Yahood Aur Hanood". Tribesmen who read the leaflets were wondering over the use of the word "Yahood Aur Hanood" to describe the enemy in the leaflets. Most thought it meant the Jews worldwide and the dominant Hindus of India.[5]

The U.S. State Department's first Report on Global Anti-Semitism finds an increase in antisemitism in Pakistan.[6] In Pakistan, a country without Jewish communities, antisemitic sentiment fanned by antisemitic articles in the press is widespread.[7] Pakistan refuses to recognize Israel as a legitimate state[8] on account of their sympathies with the Arabs in the Arab-Israeli conflict.

A substantial number of people in Pakistan believe that the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York were a secret Jewish conspiracy organized by Israel's MOSSAD, as were the 7 July 2005 London bombings, allegedly perpetrated by Jews in order to discredit Muslims. Such allegations echo traditional antisemitic theories.[9][10] The Jewish religious movement of Chabad Lubavich had an mission house in Mumbai, India that was attacked in the 2008 Mumbai attacks, perpetrated by militants connected to Pakistan led by Ajmal Kasab.[11][12] Antisemitic intents were evident from the testimonies of Kasab following his arrest and trial.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Why are the Jews ‘kanjoos’? —Khaled Ahmed’s Review of the Urdu press,Daily times (Pakistan)
  2. ^ a b Jewish Virtual Library: Pakistan Accessed October 8, 2006
  3. ^ Pakistan Accessed October 8, 2006
  4. ^ Lashkar-e-Toiba: Spreading the jehad Accessed October 8, 2006
  5. ^ "Military drops leaflets in Waziristan". The News International, Pakistan. March 24, 2006.  Archive copy at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Global Antisemitism Report - 01.05.2005 Accessed October 8, 2006
  7. ^ Report on Global Anti-Semitism Accessed October 8, 2006
  8. ^ Musharraf says Pakistan not to recognize Israel Accessed October 8, 2006
  9. ^ Pakistan and Israel - new friends?,BBC
  10. ^ Pakistan: In the Land of Conspiracy Theories,PBS.org
  11. ^ "Gunman in Mumbai Siege a Pakistani", New York Times, 7 January 2009
  12. ^ "Surviving gunman’s identity established as Pakistani". Dawn. 7 January 2009. Retrieved 7 January 2009. 
  13. ^ Rubenstein, Richard L. (16 May 2011). Jihad and Genocide. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 181–182. ISBN 978-0-7425-6203-5. Retrieved 8 January 2012.