Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Mufti of Berlin.

by Daniel Schwamenthal


Arab-Nazi collaboration is a taboo topic in the West.


One widespread myth about the Mideast conflict is that the Arabs are paying the price for Germany's sins. The notion that the Palestinians are the "second victims" of the Holocaust contains two falsehoods: It suggests that without Auschwitz, there would be no justification for Israel, ignoring 3,000 years of Jewish history in the land. It also suggests Arab innocence in German crimes, ignoring especially the fascist past of Palestinian leader Haj Amin al Husseini, who was not only Grand Mufti of Jerusalem but also Waffen SS recruiter and Nazi propagandist in Berlin. When a German journalist recently tried to shed some light on this history, he encountered the wrath of the Arab collaborators' German apologists.


Karl Rössel's exhibition "The Third World in the Second World War" was supposed to premier on Sept. 1 in the "Werkstatt der Kulturen," a publicly funded multicultural center in Berlin's heavily Turkish and Arab neighborhood of Neukölln. Outraged by the exhibition's small section on Arab complicity in Nazi crimes, Philippa Ebéné, who runs the center, cancelled the event. Among the facts Ms. Ebéné didn't want the visitors of her center to learn is that the Palestinian wartime leader "was one of the worst and fanatical fascists and anti-Semites," as Mr. Rössel put it to me.

The mufti orchestrated the 1920/1921 anti-Jewish riots in Palestine and the 1929 Arab pogroms that destroyed the ancient Jewish community of Hebron. An early admirer of Hitler, Husseini received Nazi funding—as did Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood—for his 1936-1939 Palestinian revolt, during which his thugs killed hundreds of British soldiers, Jews and also Arabs who rejected his Islamo-Nazi agenda. After participating in a failed fascist coup in Iraq, he fled to Berlin in 1941 as Hitler's personal guest. In the service of the Third Reich, the mufti recruited thousands of Muslims to the Waffen SS. He intervened with the Nazis to prevent the escape to Palestine of thousands of European Jews, who were sent instead to the death camps. He also conspired with the Nazis to bring the Holocaust to Palestine. Rommel's defeat in El Alamein spoiled these plans.


After canceling the exhibition, Ms. Ebéné clumsily tried to counter the impression that she had pre-emptively caved to Arab pressure. As a "non-white" person (her father is Cameroonian), she said, she didn't have to fear Arabs, an explanation that indirectly suggested that ordinary, "white," Germans might have reason to feel less safe speaking truth to Arabs.

Berlin's integration commissioner, Günter Piening, initially seemed to defend her. "We need, in a community like Neukölln, a differentiated presentation of the involvement of the Arabic world in the Second World War," Der Tagesspiegel quoted him as saying. He later said he was misquoted and following media criticism allowed a smaller version of the exhibit to be shown.


Mr. Rössel says this episode is typical of how German historians, Arabists and Islam scholars deny or downplay Arab-Nazi collaboration. What Mr. Rössel says about Germany applies to most of the Western world, where it is often claimed that the mufti's Hitler alliance later discredited him in the region. Nothing could be further from the truth. In the Mideast, Nazis were not only popular during but also after the war—scores of them found refuge in the Arab world, including Eichman's deputy, Alois Brunner, who escaped to Damascus. The German war criminals became trusted military and security advisers in the region, particularly of Nazi sympathizer Gamal Nasser, then Egypt's president. The mufti himself escaped to Egypt in 1946. Far from being shunned for his Nazi past, he was elected president of the National Palestinian Council. The mufti was at the forefront of pushing the Arabs to reject the 1948 United Nations partition plan and to wage a "war of destruction" against the fledgling Jewish state. His great admirer, Yasser Arafat, would later succeed him as Palestinian leader.

The other line of defense is that Arab collaboration with the Nazis supposedly wasn't ideological but pragmatic, following the old dictum that "the enemy of my enemy is my friend." This "excuse" not only fails to consider what would have happened to the Jews and British in the Mideast had the Arabs' German friends won. It also overlooks the mufti's and his followers' virulent anti-Semitism, which continues to poison the minds of many Muslims even today.

The mufti "invented a new form of Jew-hatred by recasting it in an Islamic mold," according to German scholar Matthias Küntzel. The mufti's fusion of European anti-Semtism—particularly the genocidal variety—with Koranic views of Jewish wickedness has become the hallmark of Islamists world-wide, from al Qaeda to Hamas and Hezbollah. During his time in Berlin, the mufti ran the Nazis' Arab-language propaganda radio program, which incited Muslims in the Mideast to "kill the Jews wherever you find them. This pleases God, history and religion." Among the many listeners was also the man later known as Ayatollah Khomeini, who used to tune in to Radio Berlin every evening, according to Amir Taheri's biography of the Iranian leader. Khomeini's disciple Mahmoud Ahmadinejad still spews the same venom pioneered by the mufti as do Islamic hate preachers around the world.

Muslim Judeophobia is not—as is commonly claimed—a reaction to the Mideast conflict but one of its main "root causes." It has been fueling Arab rejection of a Jewish state long before Israel's creation.

"I am not a Mideast expert," Mr. Rössel told me, but "I wonder why the people who so one-sidedly regard Israel as the region's main problem never consider how the Mideast conflict would have developed had it not been influenced by fascists, anti-Semites and people who had just returned from their Nazi exile."

Mr. Rössel may not be a "Mideast expert" but he raises much more pertinent questions about the conflict than many of those who claim that title.


Mr. Schwammenthal is an editorial writer for The Wall Street Journal Europe.

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

Israel has to stop apologizing and take the offensive.


by Isi Leibler

The non-Jewish seer Balaam is quoted in the Torah describing Jews as the "the people that dwells apart and is not reckoned amongst the nations." Recent events, climaxing with the UN Goldstone report, have certainly borne this out.

The maliciously biased report alleged that the Israelis deliberately targeted civilians and accused them of crimes against humanity. We should not have been surprised. It was a logical extension from the anti-Israeli NGO reports which have been publishing similar "findings" over the past year.

Besides, what could one expect from a committee created by the ineptly titled UN Human Rights Council, which is dominated by rogue regimes like Iran, Syria, Somalia, Libya, Cuba and Liberia? Some of the leaders of the member-states would qualify as candidates for prosecution as war criminals. The council's principal common denominator remains an obsessive hatred of Israel, which they condemn more frequently than all the other 191 member-states combined.

In fact, since its inception in 2006, 26 of the 32 resolutions condemning human rights violations passed by the council were directed against Israel. It should also be noted that this UN "human rights" body declined to investigate the monstrous brutalities inflicted on civilian populations in Chechnya, Sri Lanka and Sudan. Indeed it went so far as to bizarrely thank the Sudanese government, the perpetrators of the Darfur massacres, for its "cooperation."

Likewise, the far more numerous civilian casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan never appeared on the council's agenda. When the commission was being created, even Mary Robinson, the former head of the UN Durban hate fest, declined an invitation to head the inquiry because it was too "one-sided."

The UN Human Rights Council machers then recruited Richard Goldstone, a vain South African Jewish judge, who despite being aware from the outset of the biased composition of the panel, permitted himself to be used as a fig leaf to provide credibility to the Israel-bashers. He did not even have second thoughts after one of his panelists, Christine Chinkin, refused to disqualify herself after having previously denied that Hamas rockets provided Israel justification for invading Gaza and condemned Israel for "prima facie war crimes."

The depths to which Goldstone, who purports to be a long-standing "Zionist," totally identified himself with this crude anti-Israeli exercise, was exemplified in his recentNew York Times op-ed, in which he had the gall to compare Israel's defense against Hamas to the atrocities committed in Darfur, where millions were displaced and over 200,000 civilians were raped and butchered.

The report could have been drafted by Hamas operatives. It represents a lengthy compendium of lies primarily appropriated from Hamas-orchestrated Arab testimony and anti-Israeli NGOs. On the basis of "evidence" from these rabidly hostile sources, the tribunal defamed as war criminals the nation which undoubtedly displays greater concern over civilian casualties than any other country in the world.

Prime Minister Netanyahu is now urging the United States and other democratic countries to speak up and condemn the abominable report, which effectively challenges the right of nations to defend their civilian population centers from global terrorist onslaughts.

The response will be a litmus test for the Obama administration, which so far has been disappointingly tepid in its reaction. We should certainly not be holding our breath over the European response. Their track record of appeasing Arab extremists is appalling. One can also predict an escalation in anti-Israeli libels at forthcoming sessions of the UN General Assembly, which will now be presided over by a new president, Ali Treki, the former foreign minister of that bastion of human rights, Libya.

It is thus essential that we now get our act together. We must pay more attention to the threat from within. Today, self-loathing Jews (including Israelis) are at the forefront of almost every campaign to denigrate and defame Israel and the Jewish people. Such "Jews" are not a new phenomenon. They maintain the tradition of their predecessors during the Middle Ages who allowed themselves to be used as instruments of the most venomous Christian anti-Semitic campaigns, and more recently of the Jewish communists who applauded the murderous policies of Stalin and justified Soviet state-sponsored anti-Semitism.

There is no doubt that the vile rumors concerning supposed IDF atrocities initiated some months ago by Israelis which were subsequently proven to be utterly false, published by the daily Ha'aretz and emblazoned on the front pages of the world media, added fuel to the climate of hostility against Israel that gave birth to the Goldstone report.

That was followed by blood libels and the greatest global manifestations of anti-Semitism seen since the Nazi era, with Israel assuming the traditional role of Jews, once again accused of representing the source of all the woes and plagues of mankind.

It is thus surely time to stop ignoring the self-loathing Jews and Israelis who now occupy key roles in the campaigns to delegitimize and demonize our people. Freedom of expression enables them to continue articulating their vile attacks on their own people, but it is high time that they be exposed and marginalized from mainstream Jewish life. It is an absolute scandal that some of the worst culprits, including those calling for boycotts of their own country, retain tenure in Israeli universities funded by Israeli taxpayers and Diaspora Zionist philanthropists.

We must also provide our children, both in Israel and in the Diaspora, with greater awareness of the hypocrisy, double standards and extreme bias which are being applied against their people. We must ensure that despite the global campaign to defame and demonize Israel and the Jewish people, our youth retain pride and dignity and are conscious that when it comes to respecting the sanctity of life and upholding human rights, the Jewish state, despite all its faults and weaknesses, remains a role model in this area.

They must understand that the tiny State of Israel is being demonized because it will not stand by with folded arms and enable the barbarians at their gates to spill innocent Jewish blood. We must stop continuously explaining or apologizing, and take the offensive.

These past few months we should have been concentrating on exposing the evil nature and crude bias of the Human Rights Council before it released its "findings." We should have more vigorously exposed the prejudice and double standards of the despicable NGO human rights bodies that have adopted Israel-bashing as a vocation. At the cost of being unkind, I would also strongly recommend our government replace our current UN ambassador with a more charismatic personality along the lines of our previous envoy, Dan Gillerman.

The government should also immediately create an international task force of the best Israeli and Diaspora jurists to confront this new effort to undermine our legitimacy.


Isi Leibler
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.


The History Behind Netanyahu's History.

by Rick Richman

Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to the United Nations was steeped in history–history denied by some members of the UN, and lessons of history ignored by others. He ended by stating that peace would ultimately depend on whether the international community confronted, or accommodated, the forces led by Iran. His concluding paragraphs offered a quotation from Churchill:

Over seventy years ago, Winston Churchill lamented what he called the “confirmed unteachability of mankind,” the unfortunate habit of civilized societies to sleep until danger nearly overtakes them.

Churchill bemoaned what he called the “want of foresight, the unwillingness to act when action will be simple and effective, the lack of clear thinking, the confusion of counsel until emergency comes, until self-preservation strikes its jarring gong.”

I speak here today in the hope that Churchill’s assessment of the “unteachability of mankind” is for once proven wrong.

There is a history behind the Churchill quotation, unspoken by Netanyahu, that is necessary to recount in order to appreciate its full import.

The quotation came from Churchill’s speech to the House of Commons on May 2, 1935, on German rearmament, which had proceeded much more rapidly than the government’s intelligence had indicated and had already reached a stage that was beyond the power of “engagement” to reverse. It caused Churchill to ask why steps had not been taken two or three years before, when “alarm bells [had been] set ringing, and even jangling:”

It is possible that the dangers into which we are steadily advancing would never have arisen. . . . [But] when the situation was manageable it was neglected, and now that it is thoroughly out of hand we apply too late the remedies which then might have effected a cure.

Then Churchill provided his own answer to why England had allowed the situation to reach the point where the Germans, through rearmament, would shortly be able “if they chose — and why should they not choose? — to reverse the results of the Great War:”

There is nothing new to the story. It is as old as [Rome]. It falls into that long, dismal catalogue of the fruitlessness of experience and the confirmed unteachability of mankind. Want of foresight, unwillingness to act when action would be simple and effective, lack of clear thinking, confusion of counsel until the emergency comes, until self-preservation strikes its jarring gong — these are the features which constitute the endless repetition of history.

Netanyahu left out Churchill’s references to “the fruitlessness of experience” and the “endless repetition of history.” The omission was undoubtedly intentional, reflecting Netanyahu’s concluding hope that the history he had recounted would be a teachable moment, not another instance of the “unteachability of mankind,” and that the world would not be condemned to repeat that history.

His history lesson was reinforced by the speech from the same podium by the president of Iran–who has repeatedly expressed intentions at least as clear as those Churchill discerned in 1935 and who presides over an armament program even clearer and more dangerous than Germany’s at that time.

But Netanyahu was also preceded by the president of the United States, who delivered an extraordinarily self-referential speech, with no sense of either history or the storm gathering before him. Obama’s speech may someday stun historians–except, perhaps, for those aware he began his term by packing up the bust of Churchill and writing on it “Return to Sender.”


Rick Richman
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.