Canadian Imam Younus Kathrada justified hatred toward Jews in a shocking recent sermon that claimed their “injustice” toward others and rejection of Islam and its prophets, while warning a mosque is no place for those unable or unwilling to hate.
In his speech, which was delivered at the Muslim Youth of Victoria Islamic Center and posted on its social media accounts last week, the Islamic scholar warned of the Jewish “enemy,” after quoting the Islamic Quran.
“Let’s begin by reminding ourselves of this enemy, about whom Allah says in the Quran, I will give you the meaning of the verse: ‘And the “yahud” say…,’ ‘yahud’ translated as Zionists, Zionist Jews, whatever you like….”
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) May 31, 2021
The term yahud in the Quran is a clear reference to Jews as evidenced by its context and given that modern Zionism emerged in the late 19th century whereas the Quranic verses were written in the 7th century.
In a 2015 Gaza War documentary, the BBC replaced the Arabic word for “Jew” with “Israeli” so that Gaza Palestinians not appear widely antisemitic.
Kathrada continued by clarifying that hatred toward the Jews is specifically due to their rejection of Allah and the “prophets” as well as their seemingly inherent “injustice.”
“The animosity of the believers towards the yahud (Jew) is based on religious grounds because the people of faith hate the yahud because of their disbelief in Allah and because of their rejection and denial of the prophets, and because of their injustice towards the people,” he said.
Stating enmity from Jews is unjust while enmity toward them is just, Kathrada claims “believers” have the ability to distinguish between different types of Jews.
“There is a difference between the two [types of] enmity. The enmity of the Jews towards the believers is unjust, whereas the enmity of the believers towards the Jews is just and sensible. The believers differentiate between Jews who are combatants, those who are dhimmis [lit. “protected people,” a reference to non-Muslim second-class citizens], and those with whom they have a pact,” he said.
He then suggested those unwilling to hate Allah’s opponents should seek out the Jewish or Christian religions instead.
“If you do not hate the opponents of Allah you have no faith. Go find yourself a church. Go find yourself a synagogue. But the place for you is not the mosque if you do not hate those who curse Allah and who insult him,” he said.
“Having said that, once again, we do not [and] we have not ever called for violence towards others,” he added.
Despite claiming to reject violence, Kathrada’s repeated advocacy of hatred culminated in his prayer that the enemies of Islam be destroyed and that all jihadists be victorious.
“Oh Allah, give strength to Islam and the Muslims, humiliate the infidels and the polytheists, and destroy the enemies of Islam. Oh Allah, grant victory to those who wage jihad for your sake everywhere,” he said.
Many took to social media to comment on the sermon.
“Why are these enemies of civilization allowed to incite hatred in Canada?” asked one Twitter user.
“This is hate speech,” wrote another Twitter user.
“This is what Muslims around the world need to understand, the Muslim community in Canada will not take action against him,” wrote yet another Twitter user. “Many of them listening to him are in fact enablers.”
Some called on Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to address the matter.
“@JustinTrudeau isn’t this hate speech or is it Islamophobia to think so,” asked a Twitter user.
“@JustinTrudeau, anything to say/do?” asked another. “Looks like you, unlike the US, have the legal means. Soooo no excuse.”
This is not Kathrada’s first time inciting with radical rhetoric.
In October, he villified French schoolteacher Samuel Paty who was murdered by a Muslim youth for showing Charlie Hebdo cartoons depicting the Islamic prophet Mohammed to his class.
After referring to Paty as “cursed,” “evil-spirited,” and a “filthy excuse for a human-being,” Kathrada implored Allah to annihilate those who slander Mohammed.
On September 11 of last year, Kathrada stated that disrespect of Mohammed is worse than police killings of blacks in the U.S.
In 2018, Kathrada said that Muslims should be offended by those who worship Jesus and that wishing non-Muslims a “Merry Christmas” is a far graver sin than murder, adultery, lying and any other major sins.
Canadian Cleric Younus Kathrada: Congratulating Christians for Christmas is Worse than Murder pic.twitter.com/1S73XPjfRk
— MEMRI (@MEMRIReports) December 24, 2018
Kathrada’s remarks come as pro-Palestinian demonstrators in major cities have been accused of attacking Jews and Democrats continue to cozy up to the Palestinians.
Canada, as well, has seen a rise in antisemitic attacks, with the Canadian Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) calling for the Canadian federal government to convene an emergency summit to address the growing antisemitism and establish a comprehensive program to combat it.
What starts with Jews, never ends with Jews. The shocking rise in #antisemitism hurts all Canadians. Act now to #haltantisemitism. Ask our federal government to convene an emergency summit to address growing antisemitism. #dontimportconflict #fightit https://t.co/yDvQua61qM pic.twitter.com/8Uiffjijmw
— CIJA (@CIJAinfo) June 2, 2021
“We are witnessing a dangerous rise in antisemitism manifesting in our communities, online, and around the world,” the group’s site reads.
“From chants of ‘F**k the Jews, rape their daughters’ in the UK, to violent mobs targeting Jews in the US, to intimidation and scare tactics in predominantly Jewish neighborhoods across Canada, anti-Jewish hate is real, and it is dangerous,” it continues.
Last week, violent pro-Palestinian protesters disrupted a “Walk for Israel” rally in Naperville, Illinois, with calls to “kill the Jews,” and some chanting in Arabic, “Jews (yahud), remember Khaybar, the army of Mohammed is returning,” referencing a 7th century massacre of Jews at the hands of the early Muslims.
In a sermon last week, Jerusalem Imam Yousef Makharzah stated that Muslims will shatter the “head of America” and the “infidels” and “conquer” Rome, while describing Jews as “too lowly” for Muslim consideration.
“On that day, the Jews will not even be part of our consideration because they are too lowly, too ignoble, too base, and too disgraceful to even be taken into consideration by the Muslims,” he said.
Follow Joshua Klein on Twitter @JoshuaKlein