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'World's Most Influential Muslim': Muslim-on-Muslim Violence Is Israel's Fault

One way or the other, many leading Muslims still find reasons Israel is to blame for all of the Middle East’s problems.

Consider the logic of the highly respected Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb, once voted the “most influential Muslim in the world, as expressed during a televised interview. After claiming that “the genocides perpetrated by the Zionist entity” prompt aggrieved Muslims to turn to terrorism, he added:

[T]here would never have been any problem [had Israel not existed]. The Middle East and the region would have progressed, and the Arab individual would have been like any other person in the world, enjoying a good life, or at least enjoying the right to live in peace.

However, this is ... Allah willing, if we have time, I will explain how come this place was selected in the days of British colonialism, and how a most devious and malicious plot was hatched to plunge this dagger into the body of the Arab world, so that it would remain sick.

Thus, for those unconvinced by the “grievance” myth -- that Israel “provokes” Muslims to resort to terrorism -- Tayeb offers another angle: Israel itself is the creator and controller of Islamic terrorism. Continues the well-respected imam:

Recently, I’m sad to say, we had to swallow a dose of poison. It is manifest in our own preoccupation with our own [infighting], while the [Zionist] entity can relax. All we hear about is Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, whatever, the “Arab Spring”, or the “Arab Hell” …  Has anybody heard anything about Israel or the Zionist entity recently? Has it occurred to people that this might be premeditated?

In other words, the Arab/Muslim nations everywhere experiencing internal turmoil and fighting one another -- while the Jewish/infidel state is able to function without violent civil strife -- is proof that Israel is controlling events behind the scenes.

Such are the conspiracy theories that top-ranked Muslim clerics, above and beyond al-Tayeb, regularly disseminate throughout the Muslim world.

For the record, I am not one to dismiss what are labeled “conspiracy theories” out of hand, since to believe there are no conspiracies -- that whatever the powers-that-be think or do is “transparent” and will be reported to the average citizen -- is also irrational. But the problem with this conspiracy theory is that, just as Islamic doctrine and history gainsay the grievance accusation against Israel, so do they gainsay the "Israel as puppet master" claim.

For starters, beginning with the Sunni/Shia split that traces back to 656, Muslims had been at each other’s throats for 1,292 years before the creation of Israel in 1948.

There’s a reason that Shias are so associated with as to be conflated with the doctrine of taqiyya: for centuries, Shia minorities living amid Sunni majorities had to pretend to be Sunnis or else risk being slaughtered.