On February 14th, six members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) formed the very first association to enhance regional Jewish life.
The report says it is the “Arab Gulf”, trying to rename an area called the “Persian Gulf” for easily 6,000 years.
The six GCC countries are as follows: Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait. All of them staple US allies, while some of them even signed normalization deals with Israel.
The Palestinians appear all but abandoned, at this point.
“While maintaining our independence, this new association allows us to pool our resources to the betterment of all Jews in the Gulf,” said Ebrahim Dawood Nonoo, president of the new group.
The new forming is called the Association of Gulf Jewish Communities (AGJC).
The AGJC is a network of the Jewish communities (people-to-people) from the GCC countries who are developing Jewish life in the region.
While each community is independent, they share a common goal and vision: for Jewish life in the GCC to flourish for the benefit of both residents and visitors.
Under the leadership of Rabbi Dr. Elie Abadie, based in Dubai, and president Ebrahim Dawood Nonoo, based in Bahrain, the group is partnering on different communal programs and services so that their resources will enhance each other.
“The Gulf nations have been very supportive of the growth in Jewish life, but as more people move in and come to visit, we must tend to their educational, cultural, spiritual and religious needs by establishing programs and institutions to service these increased needs,” said Abadie.
“Each one of our communities has so much to offer the other. While maintaining our independence, this new association allows us to pool our resources to the betterment of all Jews in the Gulf,” said Dawood Nonoo. “While our Jewish community has been part of the fabric of Bahrain society for more than 100 years, we appreciate the needs of some of the smaller or newer communities in the region and believe we can help them flourish and navigate growth in this part of the world.”
Meanwhile, Haaretz, an Israeli outlet published an article in which it said that Saudi Arabia, before Islam, was a Jewish kingdom.
"When Saudi Arabia was a Jewish kingdom"
Basically they are not satisfied with the occupation of Jerusalem, so they want Madinah under their rule… https://t.co/jHrIEG8gRc
— اٮن على #ሐበሠተ (@ibnalieth) February 9, 2021
The article is called incredibly misleading, and it is very open propaganda.
It’s not completely false, but it’s very misleading. There was a Jewish kingdom in Yemen that includes the southern part of modern Saudi Arabia. They converted. Also, the western wall was built by an Arab Jew – Herod the Great. pic.twitter.com/76E0nYdJDN
— philip phillipe (@PhillipePhilip) February 9, 2021
They just LOVE to steal things..steal land, steal culture “search for Israeli food on google and see how many middle eastern dishes they claim they’re from their culture” and now they want to steal history.
— Tibo 🦦 (@freedoughnut) February 11, 2021
Responding to the highly controversial title of the article, many social media users shared the article with questions over the premise suggested by David’s report, questioning whether or not the well-known presence of an ancient Himyarite kingdom and its Jewish connection point at the claim of “Saudi Arabia being once a Jewish Kingdom.”
The headline is factually wrong (it's more of Jewish-controlled kingdom today!). Jahiliya tribes populated Arabia before Islam. All said and done, crooks can be tamed like before (remember Ibn Al Akhtab?), even in Haifa and Tel Aviv https://t.co/uCrLuLuCps
— Shakir Husain (@Shakir_BW) February 10, 2021
Some commentators wondered if the report aims to support future claims of Jewish rights in Saudi Arabia, similar to the Zionist discourse that justifies the establishment of modern-day Israel in Palestinian land on the basis of historical and religious connections to the land.
Others are still wondering when will Saudi sign a normalization accord with Israel under American influence, despite the Biden administration being formally less supportive.
The newly-formed anti-Iranian and pro-Jewish association, however, is a big step in that direction.