Reading an op-ed (in Hebrew) by Nessiah Shemer in Makor Rishon today sent me along the path of trying to imagine how the constructs and paradigms of Islamic law could - and should (?) - be applied by Israel to its Arab Muslim minority, as purely an intellectual exercise, of course.
The matter has come to the fore due to deliberations as to forms of National Service for the hareidim. Even PM Netanyahu is wondering 'but what out our Arab citizens?'. Here's a concise summary:
Israel’s plan to overhaul its military draft has veered into turbulent new territory with the government’s abrupt proposal to mobilize the country’s Arab minority for civilian national service. Israeli Arabs would be asked to perform community service and would not be required to join the army. But the concept of compulsory service — demanded by key members of the governing coalition — has stirred a hot debate within the Arab community over its place in the Jewish state, along with fierce resentment over being asked to serve a country that often treats its Arabs as second-class citizens.
“The state has never sat down with us to discuss the entire array of issues (we have), including our rights and historical rights,” said Ayman Odeh, point man on the issue for the influential Israeli Arab umbrella group, the High Follow-up Committee for Arab citizens. “If the government imposes this on us without sitting down with us, without consultation, without dialogue, we will not obey this law,” he said. No Israeli Arab sat on the parliamentary panel crafting recommendations for the new draft bill.
I found these quotations here (and see the fifth article of the Medina constitution here) and am wondering about their relevance to the debate:-
On page 20 of Qaradawi’s aforementioned book ["Non-Muslims in Muslim Society" (Arabic edition – Risala Foundation, 2nd edition, 1983], we read:
“…and all that Islam asks from Non-Muslims is to be considerate to Muslims’ feelings, and the sanctity of their religion. So, they should not show (in public – my addition) their rituals, and their crosses, in Islamic territories, and they should not build a church in an Islamic city, where they did not have a church before. The reason is that such a showing presents a challenge to the Muslim feelings, which could cause animosity (fitna) and problems.”...On page 20 of the book, Qaradawi states that non-Muslims have the right to work and make a living just like any Muslim. However, charging interest and making contracts that include interest is not allowed...On pages 22 and 23 of the book, Qaradawi says:
“Dhimmis have the right to take government jobs just like Muslims, except for the jobs that have religious color to them like being an Imam, country president, army leadership, and judicial positions that are for Muslim interactions, and being in charge of charities.
Dhimmis have to pay a special protection tax to the Muslim State; Jizya. It is a tax paid by able adults. Dhimmis also have to pay an Estate tax called “Kharaj”. The also pay a commercial/business tax (half a percent for dhimmis compared to a quarter of a percent to Muslims!...(page 31) According to Qaradawi, the Islamic state is a “creed” state. It is ideological (Islamic). Those who fight for it are to be Muslims. Jihad duty is for Muslims. Non-Muslims do not need to be in the Islamic military because Jihad is a duty for Mulsims only. Non-Muslims can contribute through their Jizya money. So Jizya is an expression of submission to the Islamic state by non-Muslims. In addition, it is a financial alternative to “Military Service” that is a must for Muslims. (page 33)
...Dhimmis also have to be considerate of Muslims feelings in such a Muslim state. They should not talk negative about Muhammad or Islam. They should not eat or drink in public during Ramadan (page 41)...
...According to Qaradawi, Islam was a greatly forgiving and accommodating religion throughout its history. Islam did not ask from dhimmis except making them wear a special dress color to distinguish them during certain periods of history, and making them pay a “small” special tax, Jizya. They also were not allowed to serve in the army. Their testimonies were not accepted in Islamic courts. But they were able to self-govern and had their own courts. (page 52) What Qaradawi is saying here is clear discrimination against Non-Muslims.
Shall we engage Israel's Arab Muslims on the basis of this platfrom of civic duty and responsibility?