During the 33 days Israel-Hizbullah War in Summer 2006, the pro-Israel Jewish groups ran an Islamophobic campaign against Muslim community in Los Angeles. In order to counter Zionists’ plan of pitting local Jewish-Muslim communities on a conflict thousands of miles away – the city Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, an Israel-Firster, convened a task force to bring Muslim and Jewish leaders to the same table. This effort gave birth to the NewGround, a joint fellowship project by the Progressive Jewish Alliance and the Muslim Public Affairs Council. In 2011, NewGround became independent from these two organizations; today, it is housed within the city’s Human Relations Commission. Rabbi Sarah Bassin (born 1982) is the executive director of the organization.

Traditional Jews have often found it easier to relate to Islam than to Christianity. One reason is historical – Jewish communities have suffered more in Christian settings than in Muslim ones. Islam and Judaism are close not only theologically but also structurally. Both religious cultures emphasise a legal system for the regulation of everyday life. That system, called in Judaism Halakha (from the root “to walk”) is like a path which Jews are summoned to walk on a daily basis, the Muslim equivalent being Shari’ah. The laws govern everything from eating to marital relations to business or medical ethics, so that theological and Prophetic ideals are concretised through incremental steps on a day-to-day basis.

Moreover, many Jewish religious scholars don’t accept Christianity as a monotheist faith. For example, in 2011, Israeli Rabbi Baruch Efrati told a questioner that jews are permitted to pray in mosque but not in a church as the later houses idols.

A 2011 study by the Center for American Progress (CAP) has revealed that seven US charitable organization have spent $42.6 million during 2001-2009 to spread hatred toward Islam and Muslims. And who lead this Crusade against Muslims? By far too many Israel-Firster Zionist Jews! For example, Daniel Pipes of Middle East Forum, David Horowitz of FrontPage magazine, Yerushalmi of Anti-Sharia compaign, Pamela Geller, a blogger and Steven Emerson of the Investigative Project on Terrorism who claims that Bush, Obama and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie are too soft on Muslims.

On October 3, 2009 – Israeli-born blogger and author, Gilad Atzmon, explained that the Jewish greeting Shalom doesn’t mean ‘Salam (peace) - but what’s good for the Jews.

Watch a video below in which a Rabbi and a Sudanese female Muslim singer talk about the common bonds between their religions dating back to prophet Suleyman (Solomon) and the Queen of Saba, Bilqis (Sheba) – over 3,000 years ago.

LA’s NewGround Project: ‘Salam + Shalom’ | Rehmat's World