Foreword by Efraim Halevy, former chief of the Mossad, Israel's national intelligence service. This book presents and analyses fatwas -- rulings of Islamic law -- issued by religious sages and clerics on issues of war and peace in regard to the actual or future possibility of conducting a peace agreement between Muslim states and Israel. The analysis highlights Islamic law's adaptation to changing political realities to the modern model of international relations; the changing concept of jihad and the current role of political fatwas. It deals with the shari'a interpretations regarding war and peace in theory and practice; the Hudaybiyya Pact of 628 between the prophet Muhammad and the Quraysh infidels; Egyptian fatwas from 1947 to 1979 regarding peace with Israel; the 1995 debate between the late mufti of Saudi Arabia 'Abd al-'Aziz ibn Baz and the popular Islamist scholar Dr Yusuf al-Qaradawi over the Oslo Accords; the Hamas hudna concept; the debate between Saudi Arabian muftis and Hezbollah sages over Israel's second war in Leban (2006); and a comparative study of the agreements that were signed between the Algerian leader 'Abd al-Qadir and the French in the 1830s. Features: Details those Muslim religious scholars and leaders who present pragmatic interpretations and envision the natural relations between the Muslim and n-Muslim worlds as a state of peace; Sheds light on the built-in pluralism in Islam; And exposes the need of moderate Arab-Muslim rulers for pragmatic muftis and fatwas in order to contend with radical Muslim factions to soften and limit Arab public opposition to signing a peace agreement with Israel, and to enable rmal relations with Israel after signing the agreement. The rulings of Islamic law cited in this book are likely to serve as a textual and intellectual basis for the public discourse on peace between Israel and the Palestinians and Arab states.
Yitzhak Reiter teaches in the Department of Political Science of Ashkelon Academic College and at the Conflict Studies Program of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Between 1978 and 1986 he served as the Deputy Advisor on Arab Affairs to three Israeli Prime Ministers. He participated in a number of Track 2 diplomacy teams with Palestinians and has been a visiting scholar throughout the world. He has published extensively, most recently War, Peace and International Relations: Muslim Scholars on Peace Accords with Israel.