There is a campaign to compare him to Muhammed.
Consider this from a recent book review of JEWS, CHRISTIANS, AND THE ABODE OF ISLAM: MODERN SCHOLARSHIP,MEDIEVAL REALITIES by Jacob Lassner, The University of Chicago Press, 336 pp.
...Lassner is extremely reluctant, for example, to arrive at firm conclusions with regard to what actually happened during Muhammad's hostile—and in one famous instance bloody—encounters with the Jews of Arabia. The traditional Muslim accounts of these events were set down in writing at least a century after they occurred and, for reasons that Lassner skillfully elucidates, cannot be taken at face value...
...He mentions, for instance, the story of the Jewish woman from the oasis of Khaybar who gave Muhammed poisoned donkey meat after his slaughter of the Jewish forces there. One could readily understand, given tribal sensibilities, why she would have chosen to avenge her murdered kinfolk. However, in this case, the meat would appear more seasoned with irony than any deadly substance. So delicate was the poison applied, the Prophet only succumbed to the tainted meat some four years later.
Unfortunately, this tale and other less laughable reports laid the lasting foundations for popular and scholarly perceptions of Jews that were generally more negative than those that Muslims held of Christians.
Or was it three years later?
In any case, "proving Arafat was poisoned by Israel" fits into the Islamic cognitive mind-set.
That's why they are pushing it. That's they way Muslims think, having been taught that story.
And this from PMW:
- When Yasser Arafat became sick and died in November 2004, the PA spread the libel that Israel had poisoned him. It is possible that this particular fabrication was designed to connect Arafat with the Islamic tradition that Jews poisoned Muhammad, Islam’s prophet:
- “Aisha [wife of Muhammad] narrated: The Prophet in his ailment in which he died, used to say, "O 'Aisha! I still feel the pain caused by the food I ate at Khaibar [Jewish tribe], and at this time, I feel as if my aorta is being cut from that poison." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 5, Book 59, Number 713)
^Dr. Ely Karmon, of the Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center's Institute for Counter-Terrorism, is a specialist in chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear terrorism.
Responding to an Al Jazeera report publishedWednesday, which said that specialists at the Institut de Radiophysique in Lausanne, Switzerland, discovered abnormally high levels of polonium on Arafat's belongings, Karmon said that the half life of the substance would make it impossible for polonium to have been discovered at such high levels if it had been used to kill Arafat eight years ago.
According to the Al-Jazeera report, polonium has a half-life of 138 days, "meaning that half of the substance decays roughly every four-and-a-half months."
And yet, eight years after Arafat's death, the Swiss scientists reported finding polonium levels of 54mBq and 180mBq on his belonging, considered to be high levels.
"If it had been used to for poisoning, minimal levels should be seen now. Yet much higher levels were found. Someone planted the polonium much later," Karmon said.
"Because of the half life of the substance, the conclusion is that the polonium is much more fresh," he added.
Karmon added that the Al-Jazeera report raised additional unanswered questions. Referring to the fact that Arafat'swidow, Suha, provided the researchers with Arafat's belongings, Karmon asked, "If Suha Arafat safeguarded these contaminated materials, why, after seven years, was she not poisoned too? She touched these things and Arafat in hospital," he added.