Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad (ra) Second Worldwide Head of the Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Translated by Shahzad Ahmed and Zafir Mahmood Malik for the Review of Religions Translation Team.
The Review of Religions takes full responsibility for any errors.
On May 14, 1948, David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the establishment of the state of Israel. Immediately following the proclamation, several Arab states, including Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, banded together to enter Palestine. This prescient article, by Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad (ra), was published a week later in the Al-Fazl newspaper.
The day that the Holy Qur’an and the Hadith had warned about centuries ago, the day which the Torah and the Bible had warned about, that day which had been described as being exceptionally painful and dreadful for Muslims has, it seems, finally arrived. Jews are again being settled in Palestine. The United States and the Soviet Union, who are ready to cut each other’s throats, appear to be strange bedfellows on this issue. And the odd thing is that both of them also agreed on the issue of Kashmir. They both supported the Indian Union and now they both favour the Jews on the Palestinian issue. Why are they united over these issues? Why have these two enemies united against the Muslims? There may be many reasons for this, but perhaps one likely reason, which also bodes well for us, is that they both see the progress of Islam ruining their plans. Just as dogs band together when the scent of a lion signals its presence, perhaps they join together in the same way. Perhaps both of them have the foresight to sense the signs of Islam’s progress; perhaps the lion of Islam, which to us appears to be asleep, is stirring awake; perhaps a light tremor in its mane, invisible to its friends, has been spotted by the enemy. If this is the case then the current dangerous state of affairs indicates the future progress [of Muslims], but it also presents to Muslims the huge responsibility that is on their shoulders.
It is a rather extraordinary fact that the issue of Palestine and Kashmir have begun at the same time. Moreover, it is remarkable that the people living in Kashmir and Palestine both hail from the same nation [the Bani Israel]. And what is even more astonishing is that one part of the people became Muslim and are currently living in Kashmir and attracting the sympathy of fellow Muslims, whilst the other is engaged in a deadly battle against Palestinian Muslims. Half of the people are offering sacrifices for the sake of Islam, whilst the other half is offering sacrifices to eradicate Islam. During the Kashmir conflict, we have often heard the word, ‘Kasher’, referring to someone from Kashmir. Similarly, in the Palestinian conflict, we have often heard of the city called Kashir, and the original name of Kashmir was in fact based on the name of this city but it gradually evolved to become Kashmir. Or, another meaning of ‘Kashir’ could be ‘similar to Syria.’
Recently, an Independence Day event was held in Kashmir in which they tried to show that the hearts of the Kashmiri people are genuinely with India. A representative of the Soviet Union specifically participated in this demonstration and thus showed the world that India has their support when it comes to the issue of Kashmir. Why? Only time will tell. [But] it does, as shown by the presence of the Russian representative.
While the issue of Kashmir is extremely important for Pakistan, the issue of Palestine is extremely important for all Muslims. Any injustice committed against Kashmir indirectly impacts [the Muslims], but an injustice committed against Palestine has a direct impact. Palestine is very close to the final resting place of our Master [the Holy Prophet (sa)]. Even during his lifetime, despite his kind treatment towards them, the Jews would brazenly and shamelessly oppose him in every possible way. Many of the wars were instigated by them. It was they who incited Chosroes to kill the Holy Prophet (sa); while they were humiliated by God Almighty, they nonetheless revealed their wicked nature. Similarly, it was they who were in charge during the Battle of the Ditch – the Arabs had never before united because the people of Makkah did not possess the organisational ability to do so. In fact, this was all the doing of the Jews who had been exiled from Madinah and who gathered together all the Arabs and brought them to Madinah. However, God Almighty also humiliated them but they did not leave any stone unturned on their end. The people of Makkah were the actual enemies of the Holy Prophet (sa), but even they never attempted to kill the Holy Prophet (sa) through deception. The Holy Prophet (sa) went to Taif and in accordance with the city’s custom, he gave up the rights which had been afforded to him as a citizen of Makkah. But when he had to return to Makkah, a staunch enemy of his who lived in Makkah came to his help and guaranteed him his rights once again as a citizen of Makkah. He accompanied the Holy Prophet (sa), along with five of his sons, and entered Makkah and told his sons, ‘Muhammad [sa] may well be our opponent, but today the character of the Arab people demands that if he wishes to re-enter Makkah through our help then we ought to extend it to him or our honour will be tarnished.’ He further said to his sons, ‘if the enemy tries to attack him, then all of you should surrender your own lives before anyone is able to reach him.’ 
This was the noble Arab enemy. In comparison, those unfortunate Jews, whom the Qur’an has declared to harbour the most enmity against the Muslims, invited the Holy Prophet (sa) to their home under the guise of a peace treaty, and then threw a millstone from the rooftop in an attempt to kill him. God Almighty informed the Holy Prophet (sa) about this plot and the Holy Prophet (sa) managed to escape unscathed. A Jewish woman invited the Holy Prophet (sa) for a meal and offered him food laced with poison. Once again, God Almighty saved him, but the Jews exposed their true intentions. Now, once again they wish to form a mighty government close to Madinah, perhaps intending to advance towards Madinah after they have established themselves. A Muslim who thinks that this is a feeble possibility is himself feeble-minded. The Arabs understand this reality; they know that the Jews are now agitating to remove the Arabs from Arab lands. For this reason, the Arabs have forgotten their arguments and conflicts and are standing united to challenge the Jews. But are the Arabs powerful enough to do this? Does this issue only affect the Arabs?
It is patently obvious both that the Arabs are not strong enough and that it does not affect only the Arabs. This is not a question of Palestine; it is a question of Madinah. This is not a question of Jerusalem; it is a question of Makkah itself. This is not a question of a Zaid or a Bakr but rather a question of the honour of the Prophet Muhammad (sa). The opponents, despite their disagreements, have banded together against Islam. Will the Muslims, despite thousands of reasons for unity, not come together on this occasion? Both America’s dollars and the Soviets’ schemes and cunning have combined together against the poor Arabs. How can Arab tribes oppose those powers who could not be defeated by Germany? The time has come for us to decide whether we should die one by one, turn by turn, or work together diligently for victory. I believe the time has come when Muslims have to decide either to perish in a final struggle or completely eradicate all hidden ploys aimed at Islam. The air force of Egypt, Syria and Iraq is no more than a hundred planes, but the Jews can easily build up a fleet that is ten times larger. And maybe the Soviets will offer them its air fleet as a gift.
I have continuously and repeatedly reminded the Muslims that the Soviet Union are their bitter enemies, but they have failed to pay any heed. Whoever comes [into leadership] looks at the Soviet Union lovingly and places all hopes on them. Whereas the truth is that the biggest enemy of the Muslims is the Soviet Union. The United States is helping the Jews to get their vote, but the Soviet Union is supporting the Jews so they can establish a base in Arab lands. The attitude is the same but the motives are different. Indeed, the underlying motive of the Soviets is far more dangerous than the motives behind the actions of the USA. However, since both are acting in the same way, the Islamic world must challenge both the US and the Soviets, but with wisdom and planning, through unity and solidarity. I believe that even now there are enough Muslims in the world that if they fully devoted themselves to this cause, no one would be able to defeat them. But Allah knows best to what extent my hopes will be fulfilled. The conflict in Kashmir has continued for eight months now, but as of yet, the Muslims have not dealt with even this thorn of contention with either wisdom or intelligence. Although the danger surrounding the Palestinian issue is more pertinent, it is further [into the future]. Even though it is more important, how much can it succeed in reviving them [Muslims]?
Today, our goals cannot be reached through resolutions; they can only be reached through sacrifice. If Pakistan’s Muslims really want to do something, then they ought to demand that the government take at least one percent of their property. Even with just this one percent Pakistan could generate at least one billion rupees for this cause. And with this one percent much can be done to alleviate many of Islam’s current difficulties. If Pakistan takes this step the other Muslim countries will also follow its example and five to six billion rupees can definitely be collected with which resources can be bought for Palestine despite European opposition. If we pay two rupees instead of one, three rupees instead of two, four rupees instead of three, five instead of four, we should be able to buy them somewhere and somehow. The integrity of the Europeans has a price even though it may be high. These resources can be acquired but for a heavy price. But in order to make a bid our pockets have to be full first.
Hence, I am alerting the Muslims to understand that these are precarious times and remember that the words of the Holy Prophet (sa),
i.e. ‘the disbelievers have become one nation’ are being fulfilled word for word. The Jews, the Christians and the atheists have stood up together to wipe out the power and might of Islam. In the past, each European country acted alone in attacking Muslims but now the all the powers have united together to attack. Let us all join together to oppose them since we do not disagree about this issue. Bringing up other issues on where there is disagreement into this issue on which everyone agrees is extremely foolish and ignorant.
The Holy Qur’an even addresses the Jews, saying:
قُلۡ یٰۤاَہۡلَ الۡکِتٰبِ تَعَالَوۡا اِلٰی کَلِمَۃٍ سَوَآءٍۢ بَیۡنَنَا وَ بَیۡنَکُمۡ اَلَّا نَعۡبُدَ اِلَّا اللّٰہَ وَ لَا نُشۡرِکَ بِہٖ شَیۡئًا وَّ لَا یَتَّخِذَ بَعۡضُنَا بَعۡضًا اَرۡبَابًا مِّنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ
[‘Say, “O People of the Book! come to a word equal between us and you—that we worship none but Allah, and that we associate no partner with Him, and that some of us take not others for Lords beside Allah.”’] 
Despite all their differences, the Holy Qur’an still calls Jews towards reconciliation. So right now, when the roots of Islam are being hacked down, when the holy sites of the Muslims are in danger, has the time not come for Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Malaya [Malaysia], Indonesia, [North] Africa and Turkey to unite with the Arabs to ward off this attack which the opponents have launched to weaken the power of the Muslims and disgrace Islam?
There is no doubt that the Qur’an and Ahadith show that the Jews were to once again settle in Palestine. But nowhere is it stated that they would remain there forever. It has been decreed that ultimately Palestine is to be ruled by the ‘righteous servants of Allah’. Thus, if we adopt righteousness, then the first part of this prophecy may be fulfilled in that the Jews have announced an independent state [in Palestine]. But if we fail to adopt righteousness then this prophecy will be extended for a longer period of time and this would be a detrimental setback for the Muslims.
Hence, we must reduce the period of this prophecy as much as we can through our actions, through our sacrifices, through our unity, through our prayers and through our crying and weeping and thereby draw closer the era whereby the sovereignty of the Holy Prophet (sa) will be established in Palestine once again. I think that if we can do this we will reverse the ever-growing tide of opposition to Islam. Christianity will move towards decline and deterioration and Muslims will once more march towards greatness and glory. Perhaps his sacrifice will also cleanse the hearts of the Muslims and their hearts might incline towards belief and then become indifferent to the love of the world, and then they will be ready to respect and venerate God and His Messenger (sa) and their faith. May their lack of faith change into firm faith, their disbelief into belief, their lethargy into vitality and their misdeeds be changed after continuous struggle.
Mirza Mahmud Ahmad
Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Al-Fazl, 21st May 1948, pp. 3-4
 Some words are missing from the original Urdu transcript [The Review of Religions]
Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 1 (Beirut, 1985), 212.
Sirat Ibn Hisham, Vol. 2 (Egypt, 1295 AH), 128-129.
Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab al-Hiba, Bab Qabul al-Hadiyyah min al-Mushrikin.
 Here, this expression is used in much the same way as the English expression ‘any Tom, Dick or Harry’. [The Review of Religions]
The Holy Qur’an, 3:65.
 The Holy Qur’an, 21:106.