This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Reading The Historical Facts

"It is a historical fact that the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem al-Hajj Amin al-Husaini was an accomplice whose collaboration with Adolf Hitler played an important role in the Holocaust. He was the foremost extra-European adviser in the process to destroy the Jews of Europe."
Middle East Forum scholar, historian, and author Wolfgang G. Schwanitz

"At their meeting [on November 28, 1941, Hitler and al-Husaini] concluded the pact of Jewish genocide in Europe and the Middle East, and immediately afterward, Hitler gave the order to prepare for the Holocaust. The next day invitations went out to thirteen Nazis for the Wannsee Conference to begin organizing the logistics of this mass murder."
"And since any European Jews let out of Europe might later go to Palestine, al-Husaini made it clear that if Hitler wanted Muslims and Arabs as allies he must close Europe's exits to Jews. At the same time, al-Husaini and Arab rulers also told Britain that if it wanted to keep Arabs and Muslims from being enemies, it must close entrance to Palestine to all Jews. By succeeding on both fronts, al-Husaini contributed to the Holocaust doubly, directly, and from the start."
 Nazis, Islamists, and the Making of the Modern Middle East, Yale University Press, W.G. Schwanitz and Barry Rubin

"My intention was not to absolve Hitler of his responsibility. But rather to show that the forefathers of the Palestinian nation, without a country and without the so-called occupation, without land and without settlements, even then aspired to systematic incitement to exterminate the Jews."
"Hitler was responsible for the Final Solution to exterminate six million Jews; he made the decision. It is equally absurd to ignore the role played by the mufti, Haj Amin al-Husseini, a war criminal, for encouraging and urging Hitler."
Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu
Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini meeting with Adolf Hitler in Dec. 1941. Photo by Bild Bundesarchiv

"The mufti was one of the initiators of the systematic extermination of European Jewry and had been a collaborator and adviser [in the] execution of this plan", explained the prime minister's spokesman, Mark Regev, referring to a book painstakingly researched and written by Mr. Netanyahu in 1993, where Dieter Wisliceny, deputy to Adolf Eichmann testified: "He was one of Eichmann's best friends and had occasionally incited him to accelerate the extermination measures." 

Haj Amin al-Husseini was associated with Hassan al-Banna from whose mind sprang the Muslim Brotherhood. A person more familiar to the public, Yasser Arafat, was also a relative of the Grand Mufti who himself incited riots against Jews who were at that time the only 'Palestinians'; targeted by deadly riots in 1920 through 1920. He was also instrumental in the bloody Arab Uprising against the Jewish community between 1936-39 in the holy land. Historian Robert Wistrich wrote in his Hitler and the Holocaust that after the outbreak of the Second World War the Mufti fled to Berlin.

In 1941, he met with Hitler, who pledged to him that he "would carry on the battle to the total destruction of the Judeo-Communist Empire in Europe". A year later, the Mufti's visit with the Nazi elite at "the concentration camp Oranienburg" was noted. "The visit lasted about two hours with very satisfying results ... the Jews aroused particular interest among the Arabs. It [the visit] made a very favourable impression on the Arabs", wrote Fred Grobba, according to the Simon Wiesenthal Centre archives.

A year after that, the Mufti solidified warmer relations with the German Foreign Office with Gottlob Berger arranging a meeting between him and SS chief Heinrich Himmler. Al-Husayni expressed the wish that "the coming year would make our cooperation even closer and bring us closer to our common goals". With an eye to ensuring he was doing his part in executing the common goals, the Grand Mufti assisted in the organization of a Muslin Waffen SS Battalion, the Hanjars, which was involved in slaughtering 90 percent of the Jews in Bosnia, then went on to Croatia and Hungary.

Urging Arabs and Muslims to honour Allah through implementing their own Final Solution, the Mufti further distinguished his cause by making broadcasts throughout the Middle Age, inciting further bloodshed. On war's end, Great Britain, the U.S. and Yugoslavia had the Mufti indicted as a war criminal, but legal proceedings were set aside with the thought uppermost that the Arab world should not be upset, through Yugoslavia deciding to drop its request to France for extradition. That near call did not stop Al-Husseini who then continued his calls for genocide.

Insisting that the Jewish presence must be erased from 'Palestine', his exhortations to Arabs to continue their violent persecution against Jews in the Middle East simply continued unabated. His urgings certainly gave impetus to the five Arab states who together attacked Israel in its first war in 1948. His death in 1974 was a great blow to the cause of Jewish extermination but his relative Yasser Arafat was pleased to carry on the tradition. Both men, the Mufti and the PLO leader, distinguished themselves by their searing hatred of Jews.

Historians align themselves on both sides of the issue of how great an influence the Mufti was on the Third Reich, and on furthering Hitler's campaign to destroy the Jews of Europe. It can be argued that Adolf Hitler needed no incitement from any source to convince him that his plan would be accepted by the outside world among those who viewed the presence of Jews as an abomination that he, personally, meant to correct, ridding the world of a pestilence.

In the context of the Middle East, however, aside from Europe, the helpfulness of the Grand Mufti in spreading and implementing a Final Solution to an irritating problem, cannot be emphasized sufficiently. The very same endemic pathology of hatred and the adoption of an official stance of encouraging mass murder existed between the two collaborators. Hitler had many issues to tend to of a pressing nature; the extermination of Europe's Jews among them.

For the Mufti; that mission may have represented the only issue that loomed on his horizon of vital tasks to be performed in the name of Islam. And he did his very best to accommodate that mission with full vigour and his firm intention to succeed. There is no controversy about that singular issue, whatever. And the Israeli President's statement eliciting great surprise and rejection among some Holocaust historians and Palestinians alike is largely irrelevant to the matter.

His statements may have veered somewhat from his intention to point out to the world Zionist gathering that there is nothing new in the world of Arab/Israeli rejectionism through an excess of verbal zeal, but he did speak the truth, one that some within the Palestinian community wear with discomfort lest the world community peer too closely at the lies promulgated by the Palestinian Authority and their supporters.

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