From: Ismail Zayid
Cc: Jack Hicks ; Edward Greenspon ; Patrick Martin ; Margaret Wente ; Mohamed Elmasry
Sent: Saturday, April 03, 2004 2:22 PM
Subject: Islamic Tolerance and Zionist Racism and Anti-Semitism.
Mr. E. Gill
The Globe & Mail

Dear Mr. Gill:
I have just received your correspondence with Mr. Hicks, forwarded by Mr. Hicks.
I find your statement astonishing. You state :" As a columnist, Ms. Wente is expected to express strong opinions." Is that it?!  Is there no requirement that these statements must be sustained by facts and devoid of blatant personal bias? Should that not be a requirement for material published in our major national newspaper?
To base her attacks on Islam, accusing Islam of Anti-semitism, on the basis of a statement by a single newspaper or a three year-old child, defies credibility.  Islam has been a tolerant faith, throughout its history, and is noted for its tolerance to practitioners of all other faiths, including Jews. An eloquent testimony to that is the statement by Chaim Weizmann, Israel's first president, before The Anglo-American Committee of Enquiry in Jerusalem in 1946, when he stated : " I would not like to do any injustice. The Muslim world has treated the Jews with cosiderable tolerance. The Ottoman Empire { whuch was virtually entirly Muslims, and predominently Arabs} received the Jews with open arms,when they were driven out of Spain and Europe, and the Jews should never forget that."
Unfortunately, many Jews, including their leaders, did not heed Weizmann's advice. Let us look at some of the most repugnant
Anti-semitic statements made by Israel's political and religious leaders:
"[The Palestinians] are beasts walking on two legs." -Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin, in a speech to the Knesset, quoted by Amnon Kapeliok, " Begin and the Beasts", New Statesman, June 25, 1982.
"[The Palestinians] would be crushed like grasshoppers...heads smashed against the boulders and walls." - Israeli prime minister, at the time, Yitzhak Shamir in a speech to Jewish settlers, N.Y.Times, April 1,1988.
" The Palestinians are like crocodiles, the more you give them meat, they want more." -Ehud Barak. prime minister of Israel at the time, Aug.28,2000, reported in Jerusalem Post.
R.J.Maxwell-Hyslop, M.P., reported on a meeting, of the British Parliamentary Delegation, in 1967, with the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committe of the Knesset in Israel. He stated that, on hearing of his reference to the Arabs, I asked :" 'Doctor Hacohen, I am profoundly shocked that you should speak of other human beings in terms similar to those in which Julius Streicher spoke of the Jews. Have you learned nothing?' I shall remember his reply to my dying day. He smote the table with both hands and said : ' but they are not human beings, they are not people, they are Arabs.' "
These racist remarks were not restricted to Israeli political leaders. Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the spiritual leader of the Shas party and former Israeli Chief Rabbi, in his Passover sermon at the synagogue, stated: " The Lord shall waste their [the Arabs] seed, devastate them and vanish them from this world. It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them. They are evil and damnable." Is Mr. Sharon's performance in compliance with this sermon?
I believe that our columnists and editors have a moral responsibility to be fair and balanced and set aside their personal biases.
Yours sincerely,
Ismail Zayid, MD.