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By MYRON LOVE
Making his third appearance in three months before the newly-formed Winnipeg Friends of Israel on February 24, Kasim Hafeez described Iranian expansionism and Saudi worldwide proselytization as the two greatest threats to world peace.


Hafeez is a British-born Pakistani Moslem, now living in Winnipeg, who metamorphosized from a garden variety anti-Israel Muslim to a strong supporter of Israel after reading Alan Dershowitz’s “The Case for Israel” and subsequently visiting Israel.
Hafeez began his most recent address to Winnipeg Friends of Israel with an overview of the long-running Arab/Palestinian war against the Jews of Palestine – which was initiated in 1920 by Haj Amin Al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem (and later an ally of Adolph Hitler) before the establishment of the Jewish State in 1948 – and the ongoing conflict ever since.
Up until 1979, Hafeez noted, the Arab war against Israel was a nationalist conflict. In that year, there were two cataclysmic events that changed the Middle East and the world, the consequences of which the Western World still refuses to recognize. These events changed the nationalist Arab-Israel war into a worldwide religious conflict without any foreseeable end.
The first of these events was the overthrow of the Shah of Iran – a strong Western ally and Muslim reformer – and the ascendancy of the Ayatollah Khomeini and his brand of religious Shiism. Khomeini quickly declared war on the United States and Israel, a war that several American administrations have refused to recognize or acknowledge.
Hafeez described Iran as the world’s most dangerous threat. Iran’s goal is to be regional superpower. Through its proxies, Iran now exercises substantial control of Iraq, what’s left of Assad’s Syria, Lebanon through Hezbollah, Yemen, and Gaza - through its support of Hamas. Iran also has built up a strong presence in South America.
The danger of Iran building a nuclear bomb, Hafeez noted, is not that the Ayatollahs would immediately bomb Israel but rather that the bomb would be used to intimidate Iran’s neighbours and further its expansionist agenda.
The other major event of 1979 that Hafeez described was the takeover by dissident Saudis of the Kaaba in Mecca, Islam’s holiest site, something that  is supposed to be under the guardianship of the Saudi Royal Family. The dissidents felt – not without cause – that the Royals were not strict enough in their practice of Islam. The Saudi Royals were able to put down the revolt, but were quite shaken by the violence.
As a result, Hafeez noted, the Royals basically made a “deal with the devil”. “It was as evil as it was ingenious,” he said. The deal was that the Saudis would spend billions of dollars exporting Wahhabism, the Saudi version of Islam and one of the strictest and most extreme forms of Islam, not only to other Muslim countries whose Islam was deemed not strict enough, but also throughout the Western world.
As a result, he reported, 80% of the mosques and Muslim schools in the West have been built with Saudi (and other Gulf Arab state) money and staffed with Wahhabi preachers and teachers who work on undermining Western values and growing Islam in the host countries.
“There remains a disconnect in the Western World,” Hafeez said. “A prominent Muslim leader in the United States tried in 1979 to warn the American Congress about the growing Saudi influence and the threat of terrorism coming to the United States. He was widely condemned.
“You can wear an a tie and still be a Muslim extremist. In the West, the second generation of Muslims is becoming more and more radicalized.”
A key factor, also taking place in 1979, he continued, was the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which helped the Saudis to spawn a plethora of extremist groups including: Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Boko Haram and now ISIS.
One saving grace, he noted, is that the Sunni Saudis and the Shiite Iranians hate each other more than anyone else. It is Sunni-Shiite warfare that is being fought out in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and, to some degree in Lebanon. That takes some of the pressure off  Israel.
“It is still the Muslims who suffer most from extremism,” he said.
The problem for the Muslim World is twofold, he pointed out. On the one hand, many Muslims are disillusioned by the failings of the modern Muslim world and look back nostalgically to Islam’s glory days hundreds of years ago. Thus - the attempts to recreate the “Caliphate”.
On the other hand, Hafeez noted, the West treats Muslims in general – and the Palestinians specifically – like children. Neither the Palestinians nor the wider Arab/Muslim world are held responsible for the actions of Palestinians/Muslims. (See all the Western apologists who keep telling us that they understand the true Islam better than the Muslims who commit acts of terrorism in the name of Islam.)
Hafeez also challenged Diaspora Jewry to stand up proudly for Israel. “Israel is not just a state like any other,” he said. “Israel is the homeland of the Jewish people and the future of the Jewish people. Israel is still evolving. It is still a work in progress.
“Without Israel, there is no Jewish future. There will not be a second chance.”