Crazy Like a Fox
What Netanyahu's "gaffe" about the Mufti and the Holocaust accomplished.
Originally published by the Jerusalem Post.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is crazy like a fox.
Netanyahu’s assertion on Tuesday before the World Zionist Congress that the founder of the Palestinian people, Haj Amin al-Husseini, convinced Adolf Hitler to eradicate rather than expel the Jews of Europe was an overstatement of Husseini’s role.
No, the Holocaust was not Husseini’s idea.
But he was a partner in perpetrating and promoting it. He also made it inevitable.
As I detailed in my book The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, during the course of Husseini’s meeting with Hitler in Berlin in November 1941, Hitler told the Arab leader of his plan to eradicate European Jewry.
Husseini told Hitler that he would support the Nazis, and rally the Arab world to their side, if Hitler agreed to two conditions: that Hitler support his bid to rule over a postwar Arab state comprised of present-day Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Israel; and that Hitler support the genocide of Middle Eastern Jewry.
As both the official Nazi record and Husseini’s summary of the meeting in his diary report, Hitler accepted Husseini’s demands.
And it makes sense that he did.
Husseini proved his loyalty to the Nazis long before he arrived in Berlin. His romance with them began with Hitler’s election victory in 1933. From then on, Husseini’s followers in Mandatory Palestine greeted one another with the Nazi salute. Swastikas festooned their towns. The Nazis began directly funding Husseini’s terror war against the Jews of Israel and British Mandatory officials in 1937.
In 1937, the British forced Husseini to flee the country. In 1941, he organized and incited a pro-Nazi military coup in Iraq. The British were forced to invade Iraq in response to the coup.
Husseini then fled to Rome where he met with Mussolini and went on the Berlin, where he remained for the duration of the war.
As the grand mufti of Jerusalem, Husseini invented and shaped the Palestinian national ethos in a manner that aligned with his pathological hatred of the Jews. Rather than providing the Palestinian Arabs with a positive vision of a future state that would safeguard and cultivate them as a distinct Arab nation, he shaped Palestinian society as a wholly negative phenomenon. It was seeded in a hybrid hatred of Jews that fused Koranic hostility to Jews with racism-based annihilationist European anti-Semitism rooted in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which Husseini translated and published in Arabic.
The goal of Husseini’s nationalist drive was not to form a Palestinian Arab state, but to prevent the establishment of a Jewish state and to annihilate all aspects of the Jewish national liberation movement through a campaign a terror and political warfare.
Husseini’s goal of leading an Arab state that encompassed Iraq and the entire Levant shows that the founding father of the Palestinian national project did not view “Palestine” as a distinct territorial entity.
After Hitler agreed to both of Husseini’s conditions, Husseini began his active collaboration in the Nazi war effort. He participated in the Holocaust directly. In 1943, he formed the SS Handschar Division comprised of Bosnian Muslims. His troops exterminated 90 percent of Bosnia’s 14,000-member Jewish community.
Husseini used his position as well to scuttle British attempts to trade German prisoners of war for Jews. In one such documented episode, in 1943 Husseini appealed to SS commander Heinrich Himmler to cancel a deal to exchange 4,500 Jewish children and 500 Jewish adults from Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria to cancel the deal and send the Jews to Auschwitz.
Himmler bowed to his appeal. The Jews were sent to the gas chambers.
Husseini contributed to the Holocaust indirectly.
Beginning shortly after his meeting with Hitler and extending through the end of the war, Husseini broadcast regular programs to the Arab world on Nazi short wave radio in Arabic. In those broadcasts he engendered support for the Nazis and the extermination of world Jewry. Using the mix of Islamic Jew-hatred and European annihilationist anti-Semitism he had developed in Jerusalem, Husseini cultivated a culture of support for the annihilation of Jews and the destruction of the Jewish (then nascent) state in the Land of Israel. That culture, bred through those broadcasts heard regularly by millions throughout the entire Arab world, still holds today.
Husseini was indicted as a war criminal in Nuremberg. Rather than try him, the allies allowed him to flee to Egypt in 1946. There he was greeted as a war hero by King Farouk.
It is true that Hitler didn’t need Husseini to convince him to annihilate European Jewry. By the time Husseini arrived in Germany, the Nazis had already murdered a million Jews.
But Netanyahu’s claim that Husseini made it impossible for Hitler to suffice with expelling the Jews from Europe is true. The only place that wanted the Jews of Europe was the nascent Jewish state in the Land of Israel.
Through his terror war against the Jews and the British Mandatory authorities, and through his incitement of pro-Nazi sentiment in Egypt, Iraq and the Levant, Husseini convinced the British to betray their legal obligation to allow free Jewish immigration to the Land of Israel and so closed off the Jews’ last avenue of escape from Nazi-dominated Europe.
As Netanyahu said, Husseini is revered and glorified by the Palestinians. Yasser Arafat claimed that he was Husseini’s political heir and blood relative as a means of legitimizing his claim to leadership over the Palestinians.
Hamas as well has invoked Husseini as its ideological founding father.
History in hand, it is time to return to Netanyahu, and his overstatement of Husseini’s role in the Holocaust.
From the time of Husseini till today, propaganda and terror have been the Palestinians’ weapons of choice in their war against the Jews. Internally lies are spread of nonexistent Jewish plots and imaginary acts of aggression, to incite and solicit the murder of Jews. Propaganda and lies are then used to glorify the murderers as heroes and martyrs.
Externally, the Palestinians spread lies about Palestinian victimhood at the hands of bloodthirsty Jewish settlers and security forces who seek to drive the Arabs from their homes. By casting themselves as victims to the outside world, the Palestinians ensure that Israeli responses to their acts of aggression are perceived as acts of aggression, which they are fully justified in attempting to defy through murderous rampages against Jews.
The Palestinians recognize that for their terror to be acceptable to the West, they must portray themselves as guileless victims. Hence, they repeatedly insist the absurd claim that terrorists who deliberately kill Jews by running them over, are really merely victims involved in traffic accidents. The Palestinian teenage girl who this week sought to infiltrate the community of Yitzhar with a carving knife, suffers from “sleepwalking.”
These ridiculous lies are only credible in a world devoid of any historical knowledge of the Palestinians’ 95-year history of aggression against the Jews. And so the Palestinians have invented a false history of their war against Israel in which thousands of years of Jewish history is blotted out, and thousands of years of Palestinian history have been invented out of whole cloth.
In this revised version of events, Husseini has been erased from history. His role in the Holocaust has been deleted. The fact that the goal of the Palestinian national movement from its inception has been to annihilate the Jewish state and that the annihilation of Israel remains its goal still today has similarly been washed out of the history books and the news pages.
To maintain this fictional account of current and historical events, the Palestinians depend on the collaboration of the Western media.
And with each passing year, that collaboration has grown more open, expansive and shameless.
Western reporting on the events of the day now are almost entirely devoid of any relationship to reality.
Consider just a few recent examples. CNN’s report of the Palestinian arson assault on Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus on October 16 contained no mention of the fact that the fire at the holy Jewish site was set by Palestinians. In the same report, the network stated, “In the past month, eight Israelis died in 30 attacks involving knives and other weapons.”
As if fires set themselves and angry knives wander the streets.
MSNBC’s reporter Ayman Mohyeldin was caught lying two weeks ago as he claimed that the knife-wielding Palestinian terrorist in the Old City of Jerusalem who was lunging toward security personnel as they killed him, was an unarmed, innocent bystander. As Mohyeldin spewed his lies, the video of the assault that clearly showed the terrorist wielding a knife was being broadcast to his viewers.
That embarrassment didn’t stop MSNBC from maintaining the myth of Israeli aggression, however.
The next week, the network posted a graphic of British Mandatory Palestine from 1946 which it claimed was the State of Palestine in 1946. The graphic them purported to show how the Jews stole ever more Palestinian land in the years that followed. Although the network was forced to broadcast a retraction, the lie that Palestine once existed had already been told.
Then of course there was The New York Times with its stunning “background” piece purporting to provide its readers with historical context regarding the competing Israeli and Palestinian claims regarding the Temple Mount. The Times reported as fact the false claim that there is a debate among respected academics regarding whether the Jewish temples were actually located on the Temple Mount.
In other words, the Times unabashedly participated in the Palestinian project of rewriting history in a manner that erases Jewish history from the Jewish homeland.
Netanyahu recognizes that the media have sided with the Palestinians in their war to destroy Israel through a mix of terror and propaganda.
He knows that the only stories they will report on are stories with an anti-Israel angle. It is reasonable then to assume that he decided to use their embrace of every possible angle of attack as a means to get the truth out about the nature of the war.
By exaggerating Husseini’s importance in the Holocaust, Netanyahu gave the media a means of attacking him. But by doing so, he forced the Times to report on the Palestinians’ founding father’s role in destroying European Jewry and his desire to carry out the Final Solution in the Middle East. They would have ignored the issue if Netanyahu had not exaggerated his actual role.
Due to his “gaffe,” every Western media outlet reported on Husseini’s actions. Some even mentioned that in his PhD dissertation, current Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said the Holocaust was both a myth and a joint Zionist-Nazi project. For most Westerners, this is the first they’ve heard of the fact that the Palestinian’s George Washington was a Nazi war criminal.
Like I said, crazy as a fox.