Testimony on the peaceful Jewish-Arab co existence

Jew and Arab Friendship in Historic Palestine By Rabbi Moshe Cohen

Rabbi Moshe Cohen is a Palestinian Jew whose family lived in Palestine for many generations; he constantly tells stories regarding the true history of Jewish-Arab relations in Palestine prior to the establishment of the State of “Israel”.

I remember what life in Palestine was like before 1948. I was a child growing up in Jerusalem, among many people who feared G-d, both Jews and Arabs.

They lived together in complete tranquility, with great respect for one another. There was no friction between Jews and Arabs as a result of the fact that they were of two different religions.

My grandmother earned her living by making socks, and she would hang out the socks to dry after they had been dyed. Once an Arab boy came and wanted to grab the socks away from her to tease her. The boy’s grandmother became angry at him and said, “Why are you bothering the Jews?” I could list many such examples, but time is short.

How great was the pain of the faithful Jews when the new Zionist movement was founded, denying G-d, and seriously harming the existing communities of Palestine, both Arab and Jewish! They destroyed the strong friendship that had existed between us for so many years.

I remember that many Jews, including my father, of blessed memory, refused to use any product that had been stolen from the Arabs. He absolutely refused to move to Katamon, an Israeli neighborhood built on land that once belonged to Arabs, although he could have gotten a house there for free.

The Zionists also removed tens of thousands of Jews from their faith in G-d, and they recklessly sacrificed many lives. Not only did they murder Arabs; they sunk ships full of Jews in order to achieve their goals.

The faithful Jews of Jerusalem fought against Zionism at the risk of their lives. During the 1948 war they came out to the Arabs with a white flag as a sign of surrender. They saw this as a crucial act to save their own lives, although at the same time they were putting themselves in danger from the Zionists, who wanted to kill them for doing this.

Thanks to our parents and teachers, who fought this tough battle, there is, to this day, a large remnant of Jews who fight openly to publicize the fact that the Zionists do not represent the Jewish people. The older Palestinians, too, remember well that the religious Jews wanted to live in peace with them, and fought against the heretical Zionists.

I remember that there was an Arab baker in the Old City who was our friend, and he said, “You are very good. Just take away these destructive youths, the Zionists, and we will be able to continue to live together.”

Our hope is that the regime of these wicked people be removed from the entire Holy Land soon, and then we will be able to live peacefully and submissively, as our fathers lived, until we merit the day when the glory of G-d will be revealed in the entire world. Then all people on the planet will recognize that G-d is one and His name is one, and they will serve Him properly, soon in our days, amen.


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