Institute Decries Anti-Semitic Remarks of Malaysian Prime Minister. PCP Report.
24 Oct 2003
Washington, D.C. - The Institute on Religion and Public Policy denounces remarks made by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad at the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit, which he was hosting.
"The remarks of the Prime Minister make evident the unfortunate fact that anti-Semitism, racism, and ethnic and religious hatred are alive and well at the highest levels around the globe," stated Institute President Joseph K. Grieboski. "The Institute on Religion and Public Policy calls on Prime Minister Mohamad to recant his remarks and apologize to the Jewish community for his bigotry and fanaticism."
Mahathir - known for his outspoken, anti-Western rhetoric - criticized what he described as Jewish domination of the world and Muslim nations' inability to adequately respond to it, commenting that "Jews rule the world by proxy" and the world's 1.3 billion Muslims should unite, using nonviolent means for a "final victory."
The prime minister, who has turned his country into the world's 17th-ranked trading nation during his 22 years in power, said Jews "invented socialism, communism, human rights and democracy" to avoid persecution and gain control of the most powerful countries.
Mahathir added that "1.3 billion Muslims cannot be defeated by a few million Jews," but he suggested using political and economic tactics instead of violence.
He told the audience of sheiks, emirs, kings and presidents that Muslims had the richest civilization in the world during Europe's Dark Ages, but disputes over dogma - instead of embracing technology and science - had left them weak and divided.
"Because we are discouraged from learning of science and mathematics as giving us no merit for the afterlife, today we have no capacity to produce our own weapons for our defense. We have to buy our weapons from our detractors and enemies," he said.
The participants gave Mahathir a standing ovation afterward.
The summit is the first since the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks reshaped global politics and comes at a time when many Muslims - even U.S. allies - feel the war on terrorism has become a war against them.
Leaders attending the summit included Jordan's King Abullah, Syrian President Bashar Assad, Morocco's King Mohammed VI, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo are attending as special observers because of their large Muslim minorities.
None of the participants denounced the prime minister's comments about the Jewish community.
"Mahathir's speech is an unconditional call for more hate crimes and terrorism against the Jewish people," Mr. Grieboski continued