Israel or Hamas?

We are often asked cynically as Palestinian Christians – when we speak out against the injustices we suffer because of the Israeli occupation – on whether we prefer an Islamic rule instead. The question is, in other words: would we rather live under the reign of Hamas, or continue in our current situation?

What this questions reveals is how for many Christians, when looking at the Middle East, the main issue is the situation of Christians, regardless of the situation of the general population. Such a question ignores the fact that not all Palestinians are Hamas, and that not all Muslims want a religious government. (Look at what happened in Egypt, where it was the Muslims who toppled the Muslim brotherhood president). My point is this: are we only concerned about the situation of Christians in a place like Gaza (and we should be concerned), or do we also care about the human rights and freedom of all Gaza people – regardless of their religion?

Going back to the question itself, my answer is simple: neither! I want to live in a land that gives all its dwellers equal rights and where no one suffers from injustice and discrimination. I want to live in a land of tolerance that gives its dwellers religious freedom. Neither the Israeli occupation nor the Dhimma law provide this, and as long as justice and equity are not a reality on the ground, it is our mandate as Christians to speak out against this.

Why should Palestinians be limited to these two options only? Don’t they deserve more? By framing the question in such a way, I fear that it undermines the dignity of Palestinians – by implying that we can only be ruled, but not rule ourselves. Palestinians, like all people of this earth, are made in God’s image (Gen. 1:28). Our dignity as human beings is God-given to us in creation – and no one can or should compromise this God-given dignity.


Abu Daoud said…
A very nice notion, but Muslims do not believe that humans are created in God's image (the teaching is from Genesis which, as you know, is considered muharraf).

It is unreasonable and unfair to expect a largely Muslim society to operate according to Judeo-Christian ideas about human rights.
What bullcrap! The ONLY place in the entire Middle East where Christians are happy and a Growing population is in ISRAEL! The Israeli Arabs are the ONLY Arabs who are happy and educated! There's NO such thing as apartheid in Israel. ONLY uneducated jew-haters belive this garbage.
Dear Munther Isaac, it was a long time ago you wrote in your blog, got a little worried. “Good to have you back” I really support a Palestine state with equal rights and where no one suffers from injustice and discrimination. God bless you.
C Nobles said…
Thank you Munther for your blog. Your writings help clarify in an age of confusion.