In last month's Smithsonian magazine, there was a revealing story by Joshua Hammer about the stepped-up attacks by Egyptian Muslims against Coptic Christians, who trace their lineage to the time of Christ. In fact, notes Hammer, attacks against Coptic churches and individual Christians have increased since Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was deposed. Radical Muslims have little regard for other religious viewpoints. Arab-Israeli relations, or U.S.-Arab relations for that matter, are not likely to improve if the Muslim Brotherhood takes power in the coming election, though you won't be able to convince the U.S. State Department of that. In a November address to the Atlantic Council, William Taylor, the State Department's special coordinator for Middle East transitions pronounced, "What we need to do is judge people and parties and movements on what they do, not what they're called."
Really? The Muslim Brotherhood's motto is "Allah is our objective. The Prophet is our leader. The Qur'an is our law. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope." Hamas, whose charter calls for the destruction of Israel, grew out of the Muslim Brotherhood. Is that good enough to conclude for everyone, except Taylor, that the Muslim Brotherhood plans to behave very badly toward Israel?
No intelligent person who has observed the media attacks against Israel (not to mention the many wars, countless terrorist incidents and continuing threats directed at Israel's destruction) can credibly conclude that Israel's enemies are merely hyperbolic. Despite all the agreements, goodwill gestures and disproportionate prisoner exchanges in which Israel has released hundreds of alleged terrorists in exchange for a single captured Israeli soldier or civilian, there are people who continue to advance the fiction that only Israel stands in the way of peace.
It's past time to stop taking potshots at Israel and start directing "fire" at the prime suspects behind continuing war and turmoil in the region.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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