Jews are portrayed in a despicable light by Muslims. But it is the CIA and ultra-nationalist Israelis that are promoting the extermination of the Palestinians with Christian support, not Jews. The backlash leads to antisemitism.
Hidden Histories: Palestine and the Eastern Mediterranean (by Basem L. Ra’ad, London, Pluto Press, 2010) is a groundbreaking read on Israel and the Bible.
The majority of modern works that examine the Palestine/Israel conflict do so with a strong emphasis on the catastrophe (nakba) of 1948, what led up to it and what followed.
Prof. Basem L. Ra’ad’s new book Hidden Histories adds a new component to the discussion. The catastrophe is minimized to explore other perspectives more fully. Two perspectives are developed, in spite of the fact that the dominant media discourse orchestrated by the US, Europe, and Israel would rather these perspectives were not heard.
The first is an examination of the region through archaeology and linguistics. The duality does not highlight the uniqueness of a "chosen people" in their exile or return. Instead, what is examined is the commonality of a stable and adaptive indigenous population.
The second perspective looks at the modern Israeli narrative -- an biased ethnic history used to justify the annexation of land and a declared intent to settle all of Eretz Israel as a "divine right" of Jewish people.
It makes sense to believers until they see the historical and archaeological evidence of the existence of a Canaanite culture. Its geography was widespread and a precursor to many of the myths and traditions of the region.
For the Israelis, if the God-covenanted land narrative falls apart, their whole universe disappears. They become just another group attempting to survive by way of dominance over a weaker group.
But Ra’ad’s work creates a discussion that poses huge problems for the narrative.
What needs to be decolonized are minds -- of Palestinians, Christians, and Jews. But given the media dominance of the US, Europe, and Israel, it will be a struggle.