QATAR - No Change in Arab-Israeli Relations

Arno Froese

“The sea is the same sea and the Arabs are the same Arabs,” former prime minister Yitzhak Shamir famously said in 1996, after the Oslo Accords, meant to bring peace with our neighbors, ended with a wave of Palestinian terrorism across Israel. The “sea” was a reference to a once-common trope of Arab leaders calling to drive the Jewish usurpers into the Mediterranean.

Twenty-six years later, A group of Israeli journalists are learning the same [hatred exists toward Israel] at the World Cup in Qatar, despite the sea change of the Abraham Accords with four Arab states in 2020.

Of course, it is not fair to paint all Arabs—or any ethnic or national group—with a broad brush as Shamir pithily did. 

The leaders of the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan (a more complicated case because of the civil war), and before them, of Egypt and Jordan, had courage and the willingness to think outside the box into which the PLO continues to try to close the Arab League.

Raz Shechnik of Yediot Aharonot tweeted a video that is similar to those of his colleagues.

He approaches a man with a Palestinian flag who refuses to talk to him and says, “There’s nothing called Israel; it’s just Palestine,” and the sentiment is echoed by women in kefiyyehs.

When a group of Morocco fans figures out that he’s from Israel, they walk away. “New friend! We have peace,” Shechnik said.

]“Israel, no! Palestinians,” the Morocco fans shouted back, from a distance.

“I was always a centrist, liberal and open with a will for peace before all,” Shechnik tweeted. “I always thought the problem was governments ... But in Qatar, I saw how much hatred there was among people in the street, how interested they are in erasing us from the earth, how everything connected to Israel arouses hatred in them.”, 27 November 2022

Arno's Commentary

Since 1948, when the State of Israel was proclaimed, Arab and Islamic nations have been fed by their political elite, as well as by the religious authorities, that Israel is a thorn in the heart of the Arab world and must be destroyed. Thus, the unidentified man states, “there’s nothing called Israel; it’s just Palestine.” 

Admittedly, every one of us, regardless of where we reside, is somewhat affected by our own media and one-sided historical indoctrination. 

Yet Israel is different. For example, Iran (not an Arab country) clearly demonstrates excessive anti-Israel tendencies in virtually all their news releases. 

But what is the reason for this hatred? has this to say: “The Torah explicitly prohibits hatred of one’s fellow in the verse ‘Thou shall not hate thy brother in thine heart’ (Lev. 19:17) […] The Talmud is emphatic in its denunciation of hatred. Hillel taught that the essence of the entire Torah is, ‘What is hateful to you, do not do to others,’ all else being ‘commentary’ (Shab. 31a). Hatred of one’s fellow creatures ‘drives a man out of this world’ (Avot 2:16). One who hates his fellow is considered a murderer (DER, 11).”

In the New Testament, it is confirmed: “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer” (1 John 3:15a).

Revelation 12:17 makes this statement: “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” We note that this speaks particularly to the Jewish nation, “the remnant of her seed.” But it continues, “and have the testimony of Jesus Christ”—that is the Church. Here we have the invisible, diabolical reason why the Jews are hated, persecuted, and so are the true Christians.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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