On February 1 Maurice
Dear Faadiel ibn Suleiman,
Thank you very much for sharing your
As a former anti-apartheid activist, I fully appreciate where you are coming from as a black person who
endured the cruelties of apartheid.. However, I think your skepticism about anti-apartheid activities of South African Jews
is unjustified. Considering that Jews comprised only 3.1% of the White population and 0.6% of the total population,
it is doubtful that any other separate group, can boast anything approaching the proportionate number of Jews who took part
in the struggle against apartheid. e.g. of the 23 Whites charged in the 1956 Treason Trial, more than half were Jews.
put the Progressive party headed by Helen Suzman into parliament and where there was no Progressive Party candidate, they
voted for the opposition United Party.
You are possibly too young to know about the activities of the Black Sash, the
Federation of Progressive students (FOPS), the Torch commando and the Springbok Legion in which Jews participated prominently.
The legion was probably the first mass movement of whites to take part in the South African liberation movement. Motivated
by of the discrimination suffered by black soldiers in the S.A. army while on active service, it was formed during WW2
by men like Wolfie Kodesh, Jock Isacowitz, Jack Hodgson and Rusty Bernstein. Back in South Africa after the war
Kodesh was a member of an ANC committee organized to protect Nelson Mandela when he went underground in 1961. My friend
Arthur Goldreich was an early member of Umkhonto we Sizwe.
As a front for the banned ANC, Arthur rented
a house on the Lillieslief farm in Rivonia where the underground leadership of the ANC met secretly. Nelson Mandela would
pose as a gardener and occasionally as Arthur's chauffeur. Mandela wrote in his autobiography how he valued Goldreich's experience
as a volunteer in Israel's 1948 War of independence. Lilliesleaf is acknowledged to be the birth place of Umkhonto we
Sizwe from which the leadership planned the struggle for liberation and justice. Today it is a national museum.See http://www.2nd-thoughts.org/id27.html
This is what Nelson Mandela, wrote in Long Walk to Freedom: I have found Jews to be more broadminded than most whites
on issues of race and politics, perhaps because they themselves have historically been victims of prejudice." His defence
attorney, Isie Maisels, was Jewish.
With regard to Jerusalem being mentioned in the Koran, you may consider taking
up the offer of $1 million by Daniel Pipes for finding "Jerusalem" in the Koran. http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2006/01/offer-1-million-for-finding-jerusalem-in-the
I admit that I am not an expert on the Quran and I note your quotation from Wikipedia with interest, though I also offer the
following quotations from Wikipedia
1. "Some have claimed that
the Qur'an does not identity or allude to Jerusalem as being the first qiblah and that the practise of facing Jerusalem
is only mentioned in traditional biographies of Muhammad and hadith collections" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qibla
2. "Shaykh Prof. Abdul Hadi
Palazzi is the leader of Italian Muslim Assembly and a co-founder and a co-chairman of the Islam-Israel Fellowship, based
on what Palazzi believes are the authentic teachings of Muhammad as expressed in the Qur'an and the Hadith.
Palazzi accepts Israel's sovereignty
over the Holy Land, and says the Qur'an supports it as the will of God as a necessary prerequisite for the Final Judgment.
He accepts Israel's sovereignty over Jerusalem, if the rights of other religions are protected. He quotes the Qur'an to support
Judaism's special connection to the Temple Mount. According to Palazzi, "The most authoritative Islamic sources affirm the
Temples,". He adds that Jerusalem is sacred to Muslims because of its prior holiness to Jews and its standing as home to the
biblical prophets and kings David and Solomon, all of whom he says are sacred figures also in Islam. He claims that the Qur'an
"expressly recognizes that Jerusalem plays the same role for Jews that Mecca has for Muslims". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abdul_Hadi_Palazzi
While we may agree to disagree on the above points,
I am sure there is much that we have in common and I would welcome exchanging ideas with you in civil discourse. As I wrote
in my letter to which you replied, "let's hope that the ANC leaders' visit to Ramallah will be followed by a visit to Israel
with emphasis on the positive aspects of relations between our two countries which could lend synergy to the contribution
South Africa, the PA and Israel can jointly make towards a peaceful Middle East". Israel has much to offer to south
Africa as described in the article by David Kaplan at http://www.2nd-thoughts.org/id50.html