Almost 850 years ago, elaborating on the depth of Muslim hatred for the Jews in his era, Maimonides (in ~ 1172 C.E.) made this profound observation regarding the Jewish predilection for denial, a feature that he insists will hasten their destruction.
We have acquiesced, both old and young, to inure ourselves to humiliation…All this notwithstanding, we do not escape this continued maltreatment [by Muslims] which well nigh crushes us. No matter how much we suffer and elect to remain at peace with them, they stir up strife and sedition.
The Jews and their communal leaders like Maimonides living under Islamic rule in the Middle Ages-vanquished by jihad, isolated, and well-nigh defenseless under the repressive system of dhimmitude-can be excused for their submissive denial. There is no such excuse in our era given the existence of an autonomous Jewish State of Israel, and a thriving Western Jewish diaspora living under the blanket of hard won protections for their religious freedom, physical security, and dignity.
When the late 23 year-old Parisian Jew Ilan Halimi was being tortured to death in February 2006, his Muslim torturers, as Nidra Poller wrote in the Wall Street Journal “…phoned the family on several occasions and made them listen to the recitation of verses from the Koran, while Ilan’s tortured screams could be heard in the background.” In the heart of Western Europe, Ilan Halimi’s torturers/murderers did not invoke any non-Islamic sources of anti-Jewish hate, only the Koran.
As a pre-condition to real dialogue-not its miserable simulacrum-Jews and their leadership-religious, political, and intellectual-must demand a mea culpa from their Muslim counterparts for the sacralized Islamic Jew hatred which is still being taught in Islamic schools, and contributed to Ilan Halimi’s death, and countless other similar atrocities across space and time, since the advent of Islam.
Let us demonstrate as Jews that we are no longer living with 12th century expectations of Muslims, otherwise they will oblige us.