Palestine broke free from Ottoman rule after the First World War with the help of the invading British army, but could never achieve the state of peace and security that it had enjoyed under the Ottomans. Over the course of nearly a century, thousands of innocent people have been killed by Israeli terror, massacres, and torture. Millions of innocent Palestinians have been forced from their homes and their homeland and sentenced to live in poverty, at the brink of starvation, in refugee camps. All efforts to solve this oppression and cruelty, played out before the world's eyes, and to build a sustainable regional peace have failed. The phony peace initiatives carried out under the auspices of Western governments have proven to be of no use, other than to buy time for Israel to carry out new tactics for depopulating the territories it occupied.

First of all, we must realize that the events in Palestine are much more than merely a ware between Arabs and Israelis. A struggle for existence is being waged by the Palestinians, whose lands and rights were removed forcibly by occupying Israeli forces. What is more, the lands in question contain sites that are sacred to Muslims. Palestine is very important to Muslims because of Jerusalem, the Muslims' first qibla, and the site of the Prophet Mohammed's miraculous mi'raj (night journey). Furthermore, Palestine is sacred not only to Jews and Muslims, but to Christians as well. For these reasons, it is folly to try and keep Palestinian lands, Jerusalem in particular, under the authority of an exclusively nationalist political entity or to recognize the rights of only one religious or national group. Palestine must be a land where Jews, Christians, and Muslims can live together in peace and fulfill their religious duties as they wish.

A merciless struggle continues today between the two peoples living in the land of Palestine. On the one hand, the well-equipped Israeli army is carrying out a policy of all-out destruction; on the other, radical Palestinian groups are carrying out suicide bombings against helpless Israeli citizens. This book will discuss the grave error of trying to solve existing problems through violence, and how a real solution might be devised.

Here one important fact must not be ignored - the Palestinians are being subjected to cruelty and humiliation while the entire world watches. While Palestinian civilians daily find themselves the targets of Israeli soldiers' bullets, while millions of people spend many years in hunger and poverty in refugee camps, while many Muslims (including women) are tortured in Israeli prisons, there are grave responsibilities incumbent upon all Muslims who believe in God and fear the Day of Judgment. The first responsibility is to fight the racist, intolerant, Social Darwinistic ideologies that form the basis of all unfairness and injustice in the world.

As you read these lines, know that the struggle of thousands of beleaguered Palestinians to remain on their lands continues in all of its violence. The occupying Israeli forces may be bombing Palestinian cities or refugee camps. Possibly, children will be going to school under helicopter fire, and families who were forced to flee over 50 years ago will still be trying to scratch out an existence in the refugee camps. In any part of the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, or Jerusalem, Palestinians today will endure oppression and cruelty mostly because they are "Muslim."

For these reasons, every person of conscience must reflect upon this situation. The responsibility of following media stories about this cruelty and barbarism, and then continuing to live as if nothing has happened, no doubt will be a heavy burden to bear. In fact, the Qur'an tells us that each person who has faith and who adheres to his or her conscience is responsible to struggle on behalf of those who have been oppressed:

What reason could you have for not fighting in the Way of God - for those men, women, and children who are oppressed and say: "Our Lord, take us out of this city whose inhabitants are wrongdoers! Give us a protector from You! Give us a helper from You!" (Qur'an, 4:75)

The responsibility borne by those who hear this command and wish to rush to the aid of those experiencing cruelty is that explained by: "Let there be a community among you who call to the good, enjoin the right, and forbid the wrong. They are the ones who have success" (Qur'an, 3:104). This responsibility is to invite all people to believe in God and experience the beauty of religious morality, and to wage an intellectual struggle against all ideologies that are hostile to God's religion and the Qur'an's ethics.