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     Anti-Semitism, Misinformation, And The Whitewashing Of
         The Palestinian Leadership, by Francisco J. Gil-White
    

     Until last spring I held what people call a pro-Palestinian position.
     Like many intellectuals I had adopted Arafat’s cause, taking what I believed was a principled stand that blamed Israel for the conflict in the Middle East, and especially for the suffering of Palestinians. Because I come from a Catholic background, and because there is a long and violent history of Catholic anti-Semitism (though not in my family), I always made clear that I supported the right of the State of Israel to exist, and that my position had nothing to do with animosity against Jews.
     In April 2002, I noticed that media coverage of the fighting in Jenin was manifestly one-sided (against Israel). I began to look into this and also into the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This work made me realize that my sympathy for Mr. Arafat was based on false information.
     Here is what I used to believe about the Middle East (all of these beliefs are quite popular):  
     1) That the media (at least the American media) has a uniformly pro-Israel bias.
     2) That Arafat’s Fatah is a secular nationalist organization trying to combat the fundamentalist influences of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other Islamist terrorists.
     3) That Palestinian terrorism is not anti-Semitic but aims at national liberation.
     4) That the Palestinian leadership has attempted to implement the Oslo accords in good faith but the Israelis have sabotaged the process.
     5) That Israel is a state overwhelmingly made up of European and American Jews who moved into Palestine and displaced Middle Eastern natives.
     6) That historically Jews were well-treated in the Arab world, and that current Arab hostility therefore stems from the current conflict.
     Now, having spent time studying the historical record, I believe I was wrong about all six points.
     In this essay I will explain why I changed my mind and provide some of the source material I have studied. I will also look at examples of media misinformation that earlier led me to mistaken conclusions.

1. What Is The Nature Of Fatah And The PLO?

     Is Arafat’s Fatah a secular nationalist organization? Or is it Islamist? Is Palestinian terrorism primarily aimed at national liberation? Or is it fascistic and anti-Semitic?
     Most people’s understanding of the Middle East comes from mainstream media sources. Time magazine is the epitome of mainstream print media, with unparalleled impact worldwide, so let's take a look at how it portrays Arafat and Co. This is from the June 10th, 2002 issue:[1]
     “In the current environment…Arafat’s desires, whatever they may be, are not enough. His security forces were so battered by recent Israeli military incursions that they are almost completely ineffectual, according to Arafat’s senior aides. ‘Our capability is zero,’ Jibril Rajoub, head of preventive security in the West Bank, told TIME. ‘Our motivation is also zero.’ In today’s climate, Palestinian commanders are loath to be seen doing the Israelis’ bidding by arresting militants.”
     You are probably familiar with this theme, because the media has presented it quite often. The underlying view is that yes, Arafat is not the best, and terrorists (what Time calls ‘militants’) may be objectionable, but the Israelis are reaping what they sowed because Palestinian terror is a direct consequence of Israeli behavior. Arafat the ‘moderate’ has been pushed into a corner and prevented from restraining the radical terrorist groups such as Hamas for fear of being isolated.
     Does this picture make sense? Well, consider what Time asserts in the next sentence:
     “Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, part of Arafat’s Fatah organization, has claimed responsibility for three of the nine fatal terrorist attacks on Israelis since Arafat was freed [from the Israeli siege on his headquarters]. Palestinian cabinet ministers say that Arafat has no incentive to stop paying the Brigades activists because they will only turn to new paymasters in the radical Islamic group Hamas, Fatah’s rival.”
     So, Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, which launches terrorist attacks, is part of…what? Arafat’s *Fatah* organization. And not only that: Arafat pays them wages!
     What is Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades?
     According to Newsday it is “the deadliest Palestinian militia,”[2] And a (London) Guardian article gives a list of the Brigades' operations under the heading, "TRAIL OF BLOOD." The full list is quite gruesome, but consider these two landmarks:
     "Jan 27 - A female volunteer for Palestinian Red Crescent in Ramallah becomes first woman suicide bomber."
     And…
     "March 2 - Al-Aqsa suicide bomber blows himself up in a crowd of mothers and babies in Jerusalem, killing nine."[3]
     The Washington Post writes that: [4]
     “…the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades have claimed responsibility for dozens of attacks on soldiers and civilians. The attacks have been notable in their variety…
     Although secular, the Brigades are named for the al-Aqsa mosque…The Brigades are an offspring of Fatah, the main group in Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization…Many members, like Abu Wadya, once worked in the myriad security forces of Arafat’s Palestinian Authority.”
     In other words, a terrorist organization that sends suicide bombers to kill babies and other civilians, and which pioneered the use of *women* suicide bombers (launching this innovation with a Red Crescent volunteer, no less), is a *salaried* component of Mr. Arafat’s Fatah.
     Indeed, this "deadliest Palestinian militia" includes security officers from the Palestinian Authority - a creation of the Oslo 'Peace' Process - who are supposed to be preventing deadly terrorists from attacking civilians!
     Time portrays Hamas and Arafat’s Fatah as being 'rivals.' Hamas supposedly represents violence and Arafat and Co. supposedly represent moderation. But if al-Aqsa Martyrs is part of Arafat’s Fatah, and if it is “the deadliest Palestinian militia," then in fact both Fatah and Hamas are promoting terrorism.
     So if Fatah and Hamas are not rivals in that sense, are they at least *political* rivals? You wouldn’t know it from looking at Hamas’s founding Charter. Article 27 describes the PLO (which, for 3 decades has been controlled by Arafat's Fatah) as “a father, a brother, a relative, a friend.”[5]
     These are rivals? Or is their supposed rivalry a show staged for the benefit of Western audiences and hyped by the Western media?
     This image of Arafat’s PLO as a ‘moderate’ faction pushed into the corner by more radical ‘rivals’ is one that Time magazine works hard to convey. In the same issue quoted above, columnist Michael Elliott distinguishes between what he calls *political* and *millenarian* terrorism. The first, he says, is primarily motivated by political objectives. The second is driven by hatred of a people and may have religious goals that render political objectives secondary. He argues that:[6]
     “…wise nations try to keep the first [political terrorism] from transmuting into the second [millenarian terrorism]. Arguably, Israel has allowed that evolution to occur. In the 1970s, the [Arafat-led] Palestine Liberation Organization, murderous though it was, was rigorously secular and advanced a conventional agenda for national liberation.”
     So, according to Elliott, Israel's lack of 'wisdom' forced Arafat’s PLO to abandon its “rigorously secular… [and] conventional agenda for national liberation.”
     I used to think precisely this when I relied on media such as Time magazine for my understanding of the Middle East. Elliot’s accusation that Israel’s policies have radicalized the Palestinian Liberation Organization cannot be fair unless he is right that, prior to the current troubles, the PLO (1) was secular and (2) espoused a “conventional agenda for national liberation.”
     What are the facts?
     When it was first formed, “The PLO’s… charter (the Palestine National Charter, or Covenant) set out the goals of the organization, which included the complete elimination of Israeli sovereignty in Palestine and the destruction of the State of Israel.”[7]
     Think about that: the *destruction* of the State of Israel…
     It is worth looking at the actual language used in the PLO Charter or Covenant:[8]
     “Article 9…said that ‘armed struggle is the *only* way to liberate Palestine.’ Article 15 said it is ‘a national duty to repulse the Zionist imperialist invasion from the great Arab homeland and to *purge* the Zionist presence from Palestine.’ Article 22 declared that ‘the liberation of Palestine will *liquidate* the Zionist and imperialist presence and bring about the stabilization of peace in the Middle East.’”
     The talk of ‘purging’ and ‘liquidating’ a ‘presence,’ and the insistence on violence as the "*only* way to liberate Palestine” (!) certainly sounds like the PLO’s founding goal was genocide.
     Is this what Michael Elliot means by “a conventional agenda for national liberation”?
     And consider this: “The PLO was created at an Arab summit meeting in 1964.”[9] The date is quite significant. In 1964, Israel did *not* control the disputed Judea-Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza territories. Not a single Jewish settlement existed in those areas, because those territories did not come under Israeli control until after the 1967 war.
     In other words, the ‘Palestine’ that the PLO meant to ‘liberate’ in such a radical, millenarian fashion did not include the ‘occupied territories’ from which the PLO has gotten so much rhetorical mileage since.
     Or look at it another way. According to conventional wisdom, a Palestinian state must be created out of the West bank and Gaza. Such a state, formed from precisely these areas, is presented as a response to long-established Palestinian demands.
     But is that true? The West Bank and Gaza were part of Jordan and Egypt respectively from 1948 to 1967. This includes the first three years of the PLO's existence (it was formed in 1964). Why didn't Palestinian leaders, before 1967, demand that Egypt and Jordan set up a Palestinian state in these lands? Why did they, even then, use the Judea-Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza areas, as well as Syrian territory, to launch terrorist attacks on Israel?
     It was only *after* the 1967 war, when Israel seized Judea-Samaria and Gaza, that Palestinian leaders decided they wanted a Palestinian state in precisely those areas conquered by Israel. It is clear from my reading that the 1967 war was provoked by Egypt, Iraq, Syria, etc. If they hadn't provoked a war, Israel would not now control Gaza and Judea-Samaria. Moreover, Israel tried to give this land back, in 1967, in exchange for peace, but the Arab instigators of the war refused to talk…[62]
     So why did the demand for a West Bank/Gaza state arise *after* the 1967 Arab defeat, and why on lands that the Arabs would not take back in exchange for a mere promise of peace? Could it be that the PLO, which was "created at an Arab summit meeting in 1964,”[9] and which is entirely dependent on money from Saudi Arabia and other rich Arab states (most of them closely allied with the NATO countries!), is really a tool of Arab policy? A policy which has as its central focus "the destruction of the State of Israel"?
     Is that why, when you go to the Palestinian Authority's official Website (the PA is an offspring of the PLO), you see a map of the Levant in which Israel simply does not exist? That is, a map in which the area of Israel, plus Gaza and the West Bank are simply and jointly labeled ‘Palestine’?

2. The Ancestry Of Fatah
 
     As we have seen, the PLO was a radical, millenarian, terrorist organization from the day it was formed. However, it was not initially led by Yasser Arafat and it was not then the most radical Palestinian group. That title went to Fatah, which *was* led by Arafat. Here is historian Howard Sachar:[10]
     “…in February 1967 the PLO leader [Ahmed Shukeiry] was wounded in an assassination attempt. For the while, as a result, the organization was at least partially immobilized by factional intrigues.
     Not so a rival, *and even more radical* Palestinian group in Syria, the Fatah (Arab Liberation Movement), organized several years earlier by veterans of the Mufti’s former Arab Higher Committee [and led by Yasar Arafat].”
     So Fatah, even more radical than the original PLO, was organized by veterans of the Mufti's Arab Higher Committee. To understand the ideological basis of Fatah, then, it makes sense to examine the beliefs and actions of the founder and supreme leader of the Arab Higher Committee, Hajj Amin al Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem, who dominated the Palestinian movement starting in 1920, when he first organized coordinated terrorist attacks on Jews in Palestine, until his death in 1974.
    Time’s Michael Elliot tells us that Arafat's Fatah had "a conventional agenda for national liberation.” But was the Mufti, whose Arab Higher Committee begat Fatah, a ‘conventional national liberator’?
     Only if seeking the complete extermination of another people is ‘conventional.’
     The Mufti was a tireless anti-Semitic agitator in the British mandate area covering what is now Jordan and Israel throughout the 1920s and 1930s. He organized murderous attacks on Jewish and Arab civilians, culminating in the terrorist mayhem of 1936 known as the ‘Arab Revolt.’ This organized terrorist campaign was armed by Hitler's Axis and led by the Arab Higher Committee, which the Mufti had formed that same year of 1936.[11] By that time a Nazi secret agent, and hunted by the British…[12]
     “...The ex-Mufti escaped from Jerusalem and Palestine in the garb of a woman. In Syria he was on Mussolini’s payroll. When, with the beginning of the war, his position in Syria, a French mandate, became ‘insecure,’ he escaped to Iraq. There he worked hard and succeeded in [organizing a coup,] bringing Iraq into the war against the Allies, the declaration of war having been made on May 2, 1941. At that time the Nazis’ entered Greece and Egypt.
     When the revolt was crushed (mainly by the Jewish volunteers from Palestine), the ex-Mufti escaped to Iran and hid himself in the Japanese Embassy there. From Teheran he escaped to Italy, where his arrival was announced by the Fascist radio as a “great and happy event;” in November, 1941, he arrived in Berlin and was received by Hitler. In 1942 the ex-Mufti organized the Arab Legion that fought the American invasion in Africa…” [ Excerpt from New York Post, 23 Feb, 1948]
     So, Hajj Amin was received by Hitler. What did they discuss at this 1941 meeting? The following excerpt is taken verbatim from a ‘Memorandum By An Official of the Foreign Minister’s Secretariat,’ a Nazi document summarizing the Mufti’s meeting with Hitler:[13]
     “The Führer then made the following statement to the Mufti, enjoining him to lock it in the uttermost depths of his heart
     1. He (the Führer) would carry on the battle to the total destruction of the Judeo-Communist empire in Europe.
     2. At some moment which was impossible to set exactly today but which in any event was not distant, the German armies would in the course of this struggle reach the southern exit from Caucasia.
     3. As soon as this had happened, the Führer would on his own give the Arab world the assurance that its hour of liberation had arrived. *Germany’s objective would then be solely the destruction of the Jewish element residing in the Arab sphere under the protection of British power* [my emphasis]. In that hour the Mufti would be the most authoritative spokesman for the Arab world. It would then be his task to set off the Arab operations which he had secretly prepared. When that time had come, Germany could also be indifferent to French reaction to such a declaration.”
     The same document states that the Mufti, “was fully reassured and satisfied by the words which he had heard from the Chief of the German State.”
     That is, he was “fully reassured and satisfied” that Hitler would (1) help him carry out *the destruction of all Jews* living in the Arab sphere and, (2) based on that Final Solution, make him "the most authoritative spokesman in the Arab world."
     To call the Mufti a ‘millenarian terrorist’ doesn't quite do him justice.[14a]
     “…[The Mufti Hajj Amin al] Husseini made his contribution to the axis war effort in his capacity as a Muslim, rather than as an Arab leader, by recruiting and organizing *in record time*, during the spring of 1943, Bosnian Muslim battalions in Croatia comprising some twenty thousand men. These Muslim volunteer units, called Hanjar (sword),[14b] were put in Waffen-SS units, fought Yugoslav partisans in Bosnia, and carried out police and security duties in Hungary. *They participated in the massacre of civilians in Bosnia and volunteered to join in the hunt for Jews in Croatia...*  The Germans made a point of publicizing the fact that Husseini had flown from Berlin to Sarajevo for the sole purpose of giving his blessing to the Muslim army and inspecting its arms and training exercises.” [Encyclopedia Of The Holocaust]
     In other words, the Mufti enthusiastically participated in the Final Solution. The civilians whom his Waffen SS troops hunted included thousands of Serbian and Roma ('Gypsies') who were killed with a brutality that shocked the German Nazis.
     After the war, the Yugoslav government issued a warrant for the Mufti’s arrest for war crimes. . .
     The Western allies captured him in Germany. They should have tried him for war crimes at Nuremberg or turned him over to Yugoslavia. Instead, he mysteriously escaped to Cairo.[60]
     "In August 1945, Yugoslavia asked that the ex-Mufti be placed on the official list of war criminals. What is the reason for the failure to bring him to trial in Germany, where he was captured when Germany collapsed?
     "…according to the Charter of the International Tribunal at Nuremberg, the ex-Mufti is a criminal on all three counts, for crimes against peace, war crimes, and crimes against humanity."
[excerpt from New York Post, 23 Feb, 1948]
     Was the Mufti discreetly allowed to escape? Did the Mufti's World War II enemies find new uses for him in the Middle East now that a new era had begun? If they did, this would be consistent with how Britain used the Mufti *before* the war, for in fact it was the British colonial government that elevated Hajj Amin al Husseini to the status of "Mufti."
     Revisionists like to portray al Husseini as an anti-colonial fighter, but it was in fact the British colonial government that anointed him with the title 'Mufti.' The history of Jewish-Arab relations in Palestine might have been very different were it not for the dramatic support that the British gave to this violent anti-Semite.
     “In 1921, [first High Commissioner of Palestine Sir Herbert] Samuels appointed Hajj Amin al Husayni, an ardent anti-Zionist and a major figure behind the April 1920 riots, as mufti (chief Muslim religious jurist) of Jerusalem. In 1922 he augmented Hajj Amin’s power by appointing him president of the newly constituted Supreme Muslim Council (SMC), which was given wide powers over the disbursement of funds from religious endowments, fees, and the like.”[Library of Congress Country Study][15]
     Thus the British rewarded the man responsible for organizing the 1920 terrorist attacks on innocent Jewish civilians by giving him official status and financial power.
     The Library of Congress study fails to note that *after* being appointed Mufti in 1921, Hajj Amin al Husseini *again* organized terror attacks against Jewish civilians.[16] The British response? As shown above, they expanded the Mufti's political and financial powers the next year, in 1922. In this way, Britain sent a clear message: the way for a Palestinian Arab to get ahead as a politician was to organize terrorist attacks on Jewish civilians.
     The Mufti heard this message loud and clear. He used his British-granted powers to displace competitors and push Arab politics to anti-Semitic extremes:
     “By heading the SMC, Hajj Amin controlled a vast patronage network, giving him power over a large constituency. This new patronage system competed with and threatened the traditional family-clan and Islamic ties that existed under the Ottoman Empire. Traditional Arab elites hailing from other locales, such as Hebron and Haifa, resented the monopoly of power of the British-supported Jerusalem-based elite…" [Library of Congress Country Study][17]
     Tension between members of Arab elites was exacerbated because Hajj Amin, who was not an elected official, increasingly attempted to dictate Palestinian politics. The competition between the major families and the increased use of the Zionist threat as a political tool in inter-elite struggles placed a premium on extremism. Hajj Amin frequently incited his followers against the Nashashibis [a competing clan] by referring to the latter as Zionist collaborators.”
     In 1929, and most spectacularly in 1936, Hajj Amin al-Husseini *again* incited terror against Jewish civilians.[18]
     The Mufti has been portrayed as leading an 'anti-colonialist' movement. But it is clear that the Mufti was a creation of the British colonial government, and presided over "the British-supported Jerusalem elite." It is because of this British support that the Mufti became, and remained until his death, the most important leader of Arabs in the disputed territories. For many years his Arab Higher Committee was the official representative of Palestinians.[19]
     After Al Husseini's death in 1974, the relatives of this anti-Semite and fascist continued to wield decisive influence in Palestinian organizations. Case in point: Yasar Arafat. As Howard Sachar explains :[20]
     “The Fatah leader’s actual name was Abd al-Rahman abd al-Rauf Arafat al-Qud *al-Husseini*. He shortened it to obscure his kinship with the discredited ex-Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Muhammad Amin al-Husseini.”
     It is of course true that nobody is responsible for the politics of their relatives. So in principle Arafat could be a tolerant man dedicated to peace with the Jews, even though his clan relative, the Mufti, was a top Nazi.
     But the issue isn't merely blood ties. Arafat's Fatah, an organization even more radical than the millenarian terrorists in the original PLO, was founded by veterans of the Arab Higher Committee.
     The Committee was the instrument of this violent genocidal terrorist, Hajj Amin al-Husseini, who played a leading role in the Holocaust.
     And Arafat is proud that he cut his teeth serving the Mufti.
     "I Was One of His Troops," boasts Arafat
     In today's world of media-hype politics, labels are all-important. The media defines Arafat and other Palestinian terrorists as being corrupt, yes, and opportunists too, but secular, relatively moderate, and the best alternative to the really terrible Islamist terrorists. This creates a mental image that allows people who would never support a Nazi to support Arafat’s faction. To help cultivate this image, Arafat and other Palestinian terrorist leaders avoid the messy subject of the Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the Nazi, when speaking to non-Arabs. But apparently Arafat has no such inhibition when addressing Arabs.
     Here is what Arafat told an interviewer from the pro-PLO London Arabic-language newspaper, Al Sharq al Awsat. His comments were picked up by a leading Palestinian daily:[21]
     “Interviewer: ‘I have heard voices from within the [Palestinian] Authority in the past few weeks, saying that the reforms are coordinated according to American whims…’
     Arafat: “We are not Afghanistan…We are the Mighty People. Were they able to replace our hero Hajj Amin al-Husseini? ... There were a number of attempts to get rid of Hajj Amin, whom they considered an ally of the Nazis. But even so, he lived in Cairo, and participated in the 1948 war, and I was one of his troops.”
     So Arafat got his start as the Mufti’s lieutenant. Later, following the path blazed by the Mufti, Arafat’s Fatah displaced its rivals and asserted its power by violently attacking Palestinian civilians and other Arabs who challenged it.[22] And according to Sachar, Fatah was also *Islamic fundamentalist* from the beginning [23]
     “From the outset…the Fatah’s reputation depended largely upon the success of its *Moslem traditionalist approach of jihad against Israel*, and upon conventional infiltration methods.”
     A Jihad or holy war is conducted against ‘infidels’ not because of anything they do, but because of what they are: *infidels*.
     Given all this, how should we view the statement made by Time’s Michael Elliott that, “In the 1970s, the Palestine Liberation Organization, murderous though it was, was rigorously secular…”?
     Well, we can view it as a statement made in surprising ignorance of the facts. Or else we can view it as a lie, because it is no secret that from 1970 onwards, Fatah, which had a “Moslem traditionalist approach of jihad,” had taken over the PLO!
     “By [1970]…the splinterization of the guerilla ranks largely dictated the altered nature of their offensive against Israel. Nominally, most of them belonged to an umbrella coordinating federation, the Palestine Liberation Organization. Yet this prewar, Egyptian-dominated group had been seriously crippled by the June debacle, and its leader, Ahmed Shukeiry, had been forced into retirement. Since then, the PLO had experienced less a revival than a *total reincarnation* of membership and purpose under the leadership of Yasser Arafat. Consisting ostensibly of representatives of all guerilla organizations, the PLO in its resurrected form was *almost entirely* Fatah-dominated, and Arafat himself served as president of its executive. In this capacity he was invited to attend meetings of the Arab League, and won extensive subsidies from the oil-rich governments of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the sheikhdoms of the Persian Gulf.”[Sachar] [24]
     Thus, while it is a common view that Arafat’s PLO is a secular and even leftist counter-balance to the Islamist Palestinian groups, and to the ultra-conservative Islamist oil states, the truth is quite different. It was the Islamist oil states that financed the PLO’s “total reincarnation of membership and purpose under the leadership of Yasser Arafat.” They did this in such a way that the PLO became “almost entirely Fatah-dominated.” And this is the same Fatah whose “reputation depended largely upon the success of its Moslem traditionalist approach of jihad against Israel.”

3. But What About Today? Have The Palestinian Leaders Changed Their Stripes?

     Recently, as a result of the Oslo ‘Peace’ Process, there has been yet another organizational reincarnation.
     Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin sent Yasser Arafat a letter dated September 9, 1993 in which he stated that, as a result of the Oslo negotiations, “the Government of Israel has decided to recognize the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people.”[25] It was therefore the PLO (essentially Fatah) that went on to form the Palestinian Authority (PA).
     The argument one hears in the media is that the Oslo ‘Peace’ Process turned the PLO into doves, but that Israeli crackdowns have led them to support terrorism again.
     However, at least when they speak in Arabic to Arab audiences, leaders of the PLO and the PA will have nothing to do with this official story. On such occasions they describe the Oslo accords as a ploy, a “Trojan Horse” to destroy Israel in stages.[26] For example, as reported in the Baltimore Sun:[27]
     “…Faisal Husseini, the top PLO official in Jerusalem…[was] quoted as likening the Oslo accords to a ‘Trojan horse.’…the weekly Al-Arabi,[28] quotes Husseini as calling the Oslo accords ‘just a temporary procedure, or just a step towards something bigger…the liberation of all historical Palestine from the (Jordan) river to the (Mediterranean) sea, even if this means that the conflict will last for another thousand years or for many generations.’
     Sharif Husseini, director of international relations at Orient House, Faisal Husseini’s base in Jerusalem, says his relative was quoted out of context.”
     Notice that Sharif Husseini is not denying that Faisal Husseini said these things. Instead he is saying that he was quoted out of context.
     I cannot imagine a context in which Faisal Husseini’s words would mean something other than what they literally say, and they are entirely in keeping with who Faisal Husseini *really* is.[29] Perhaps Sharif Husseini actually meant to say that what a Palestinian official says in Arabic to fellow Arabs is the wrong context for members of a Western audience - for them, an entirely different set of statements must be prepared.[30]
     As the Courier Mail points out, “Observers have long criticised Mr Arafat over the gulf between his pronouncements in English to the Western media and what he says in Arabic to his own people…In his speech in Ramallah before a delegation from Hebron in January [2002] (Al Hayat, Al Jadeeda) Mr Arafat again urged the crowd on to ‘Jihad.’”[31]
     Calls for jihad are not a recent move for Arafat. Here is the Evening Standard (London) reporting on Yasser Arafat in 1994, only *one year* after the Oslo ‘Peace’ Process got under way:[32]
     “A tape-recording has surfaced of PLO leader Yasser Arafat speaking to Moslem followers in a Johannesburg mosque…Mr Arafat was exhorting his followers to prosecute a ‘jihad ... to liberate Jerusalem’. Mr Arafat does not deny the tape’s authenticity, but now says he meant ‘jihad’ in a metaphorical sense. A verbal jihad. A jihad of ideas. Nothing to do with violence. Mr Arafat’s effrontery adds insult to injury. In 1980, King Fahd of Saudi Arabia gave a clear definition: ‘What is meant by jihad is a united, comprehensive, integrated Arab-Islamic confrontation in which we place all our resources and our spiritual, cultural, political, material and military potential in a long and untiring ‘Holy War’ against Israel, of course, who else?’ So even if Mr Arafat really did mean ‘jihad’ in this novel, non-violent sense, his legions of followers would not have picked up the sophisticated nuance. They would have taken it to mean that the peace process was just a stratagem: a Trojan Horse which should now be exploited with maximum violence. At best, Mr Arafat was irresponsible. At worst, deeply dishonest.”
     Arafat, too, seems to have thought of the Oslo ‘Peace’ Process, from the start, as a “Trojan Horse.” This is in keeping not only with what his own officials say, but also with the whole pattern of Oslo (that is, Norwegian) diplomacy on behalf of NATO powers around the world.[33]
     And notice how in tune the ruler of Saudia Arabia was with the goals of jihad against Israel. Small wonder, given that Saudi Arabia is the main sponsor of Palestinian terrorism, a policy that gets enthusiastic support from the Muslim clerics at Saudi Arabian mosques.
     For example, the Associated Press reported in October 2000 that “a Saudi cleric at one of Riyadh's largest mosques called for jihad holy war against Israel and its supporters, spelling out American embassies, companies and individuals as legitimate targets.”[34] This is the tip of the iceberg.
     For good measure, consider the recent statements of the Communications Minister of the Palestinian Authority (again, made to an Arab audience, in Arabic):
     “A Palestinian Cabinet minister…Communications Minister Imad Falouji said during a PLO rally that it is a mistake to think that the intifada, or uprising, in which more than 400 people have been killed, was sparked by Israeli Prime Minister-elect Ariel Sharon’s controversial visit to Al-Aqsa mosque compound in late September.
     ‘It had been planned since Chairman Arafat’s return from Camp David, when he turned the tables in the face of the former U.S. president (Bill Clinton) and rejected the American conditions,’ Falouji said.
     Israel long has contended the intifada was planned.
     Falouji, in Lebanon for an Arab telecommunications conference, was addressing a Palestine Liberation Organization rally at the Ein el-Hilweh refugee camp on the southern edge of this port city, 45 kilometers (28 miles), south of Beirut. He also said the PLO is reviving its ‘‘military action’’ groups to escalate the fighting against Israel.
     ‘The PLO is going back to the 60s, 70s and 80s. The Fatah Hawks, the Kassam Brigades, the Red Eagle and all the military action groups are returning to work,’ he told a cheering crowd of nearly 2,500 people, including local Palestinian faction leaders.
     The PLO organized the rally to show support for the uprising.”[Associated Press][35]
     When speaking to fellow Arabs, this cabinet minister of the Palestinian Authority proudly denied - at a PLO-sponsored event - that the Al Aqsa Intifada was a spontaneous outburst and explained that it had all been planned. We also learn that the PLO was activating its various military wings. It hardly seems as if Palestinian ‘extremists’ *dragged* the ‘moderate’ PLO into anything. Indeed, given that “Falouji [is] a former Islamic resistance movement Hamas leader,”[36] and that even before the al-Aqsa Intifada - when he was already a Palestinian Authority minister - Falouji “called for the kidnapping of Israelis who could then be exchanged in return for the release of Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails,”[37] it really is hard to see what distinctions one would make between the various Palestinian organizations. They are cut from the same cloth and appear highly coordinated.
     And there is quite a proliferation of organizations and sub-organizations. Apart from the Al-Aqsa Brigades, Fatah has also produced the Tanzim, and the Tanzim played a central role in getting the al-Aqsa Intifada going:
     “The Tanzim is the armed wing of the Fatah, …[it] serves as an informal, unofficial ‘Palestinian army’ which can engage Israeli security forces *and Jewish civilians* without officially breaking signed agreements with Israel.
     Tanzim militants have played a significant military role in demonstrations and clashes with Israeli security forces. *The organization has been at the forefront of the violent demonstrations which erupted in October 2000*, when peace talks with Israel over a final settlement reached a dead end.
     The Tanzim have played a *leading role* in the activities of the ‘al-Aqsa Intifada,’ including carrying out *ambushes of civilian vehicles and bombings of buses in Israeli cities*.”[International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism][38]
     The Tanzim is one of the armed wings of Fatah, and the Tanzim played a leading role in getting the al-Aqsa Intifada started, including attacks on Israeli civilians. So then it is perfectly clear that when PA Communications Minister Falouji tells his Arab audience that the Intifada was planned in advance, he is just saying what we would all know if the Western media did its job.
     Indeed, one might well ask, why does the mainstream press so thoroughly *not* do its job? Consider this from Newsday, only recently:[39]
     “The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades was born less than two years ago, when the current intifada, or Palestinian uprising, was already under way. One night in October, seven friends from Yasser Arafat's Fatah faction met in a Balata alleyway. *Frustrated that Fatah had no organized militia*, they decided to build one.”
     “No organized militia”?! Who is supposed to believe that?
     Probably those who don’t know that the Tanzim, Fatah’s "informal, unofficial ‘Palestinian army’" helped start the Al-Aqsa Intifada in the first place.
     Newsday is talking nonsense and pulling wool over our eyes. (This is nothing new, given that Newsday fabricated the story that the Bosnian Serbs were running death camps…).[40]
     And given that the Tanzim, the armed wing of Arafat’s Fatah, like the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, also part of Fatah, carries out terrorist attacks against civilians, it is clear that Arafat does not preside over a conventional nationalist organization.
     But rather than dwelling on - or even reporting - the facts I have reviewed here, newspapers like the Baltimore Sun call upon nameless yet “Prominent Palestinian analysts [who] insist that *Palestinian leaders* and the *vast majority* of their people still want a ‘two-state solution.’”[41]
     They then bemoan the stubborn Israeli perception that “Palestinians…wish to bring an end to the state of Israel,” concluding that “the Israeli perception…casts a shadow over the continuing guerrilla war, now hovering between a doomed cease-fire and possibly greater violence.”[42]
     Thus, for the Sun, the problem is self-evidently one of Israeli misperceptions.
     And I can see their point.
     Why should Israelis conclude that Palestinian leaders wish to destroy the state of Israel just because Palestinian leaders - and the founding charters of all their dominant organizations - say they wish to destroy the State of Israel?
     Why should Israelis worry about having, south and east of their diminutive 85-mile wide country, a state led by organizations descended from violent anti-Semites who helped Hitler conduct his campaign to exterminate every last living Jew (only begging him to please, try harder)?
     And why should Israelis be nervous about negotiations with Palestinian leaders who tell Arab audiences that this Oslo ‘Peace’ Process is just a “Trojan Horse” to destroy Israel in stages?
     Go figure…

4. The Refugee Question

     Critics of Israel from the moderate (my former position) to the most extreme portray it as an example of Colonialism: European settlers push out the native population turning them into homeless refugees. And sure, they say, those Europeans were themselves victims of genocide, but do two wrongs make a right?
     There are two problems with this view. First, it incorrectly portrays the makeup of the people who constitute most of the Jewish population in Israel. And second, it incorrectly describes the causes and nature of the Palestinian refugee problem.
     We will deal with these points in the following two sections.
     Is Israel a European “Settler State”?
     That is the commonly held view, but the truth is quite different.
     In fact, “following the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948, practically all the Yemenite, Iraqi, and Libyan Jews and major parts of the other Oriental Jewish communities migrated to Israel.”[43] These are the Mizrahim, or ‘Oriental Jews’ who used to live in North Africa and the Middle East, from Morocco to Iraq. As I document below, these Jews became more than half of all Jews in Israel.
     Why did the Mizrachim end up in Israel?
     The Mizrachim didn’t simply ‘migrate’ to Israel. Here is an excerpt from historian Howard Sachar that paints a picture of the environment in which these ‘Oriental Jews’ lived in the two decades leading up to the exodus of 1947-49:[44]
     “One particularly successful Axis technique of winning favor among the Arabs had its basis in ideology…the Arabs were reminded of the enemies they shared in common with the Nazis…Nazi German diplomats evinced no hesitation whatever in publicizing the Nazi anti-Jewish campaign. Hardly a German Arabic-Language newspaper or magazine appeared in the Middle East without a sharp thrust against the Jews. Reprints of these strictures were widely distributed by the [Jerusalem] Mufti’s Arab Higher Committee. Upon introducing the Nuremberg racial laws in 1935, therefore, Hitler received telegrams of congratulation and praise from all corners of the Arab world….Throughout the Arab Middle East, a spate of ultra-right-wing political groupings and parties developed in conscious imitation of Nazism and Italian fascism.”
     Why was there so much ideological affinity between the Muslims in North Africa and the Middle-East, and Hitler’s Nazi Germany?
     The usual explanation is that the Muslims were following the dictate, ‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend.’ France and Britain had colonized the Middle East. Hitler was opposed to France and Britain. And so, the argument goes, Muslim leaders allied with Hitler in a marriage of convenience.
     But a strategic marriage of convenience does not explain the enthusiasm with which the Nazi hatred of Jews was greeted by Arab Muslims. The historical status of Jews in Muslim lands, however, does help explain this enthusiasm.
     Many claim that the status of Jews in the Arab world was not like that of Jews in Europe (i.e. it was supposedly *better*), and therefore Arabs did not have anti-Semitic attitudes until Zionists came to Palestine. In truth, Jewish life in the Arab world was characterized by institutionalized racism.[63]
     In the Muslim lands, over the centuries, Christians and Jews lived as ‘dhimmi’ people. One often hears that dhimmi status ‘protected’ Christians and Jews because they were ‘people of the book’ - that is, the Bible. But the question is: protected from what?
     As it turns out, from complete extermination at the hands of the same Muslims.
     Muslims took control of the middle east through jihad - religious wars of conquest. In general, local people who refused to convert to Islam were commonly slaughtered. But Christianity and Judaism were perceived as religions of which Islam was the culmination. If the leaders of conquered Christians and Jews signed a dhimma (agreement) their people could be spared. The alternative to signing was death. So the dhimma was a *forced* agreement, a ‘contract’ of surrender. Jews and Christians were protected from jihad, at least in theory, as long as they adhered to the terms of this ‘agreement.’
     Since dhimmis were by definition people who refused to convert to Islam, their existence had to be a living expression of the inferiority of Judaism and Christianity. This inferiority was codified in the rules of the dhimma, such as:
     * dhimmi people had to cede the center of the road to Muslims;
     * the only animal they could ride was a donkey;
     * they could not testify against a Muslim in court;
     * they could not build houses taller than those of Muslims;
     * they could not build new places of worship;
     * they had to pray quietly so as not to offend the ears of passing Muslims;
     * a dhimmi man could not so much as touch a Muslim woman but a Muslim man could take Jewish or Christian women as wives;
     * a dhimmi could not defend himself if physically assaulted by a Muslim;
     * dhimmis could not bear arms;
     * dhimmis had to pay a special tax every year and were treated in humiliating fashion when paying it;
     * in public, dhimmis had to wear distinctive clothing, intentionally designed to be humiliating;
     * at least in the 9th century, dhimmis had to nail wooden images of devils to their doors;
     * Etcetera…
     Beyond institutionalized inequality and constant humiliation, the dhimma also meant unrelieved insecurity. Why? Because the dhimma was a treaty of surrender by a people conquered in jihad (holy fighting) and its maintenance was conditional. A Jew or Christian perceived by Muslims as violating the dhimma could be severely punished. Moreover, the dhimma itself could be cancelled at any time, subjecting the entire community to a renewal of jihad.
     Consider this example. If a Jew or Christian prospered, an envious Muslim might use force or legal maneuvers to seize his wealth. Resistance could be treated as a violation of the dhimma, placing the entire dhimmi community in mortal danger. A Muslim official could rule that the dhimma was void or religious fanatics could rouse a Muslim mob, and the Jews or Christians could be slaughtered en masse.
     Ordinary Muslims were brought up to believe in the justice of dhimmitude and therefore the poorest Muslim could feel superior to the richest Christian or Jew. This scorn for the 'lowly' dhimmi people strengthened the ties between Muslim ruling classes and the Muslim poor.
     Why did Zionism, the movement for a Jewish state in Palestine, elicit fury in many Arabs from its very beginnings? To understand this, one must look at the world from a traditionalist Arab/Islamic point of view.
     The Arab upper classes saw dhimmitude as the cement of the social fabric, helping guarantee the loyalty of ‘the street.’ Many ordinary Arabs perceived in the lowly status of Jews - that is, in dhimmitude - a confirmation of their own worth. And there was special contempt for the Jews, perhaps because, unlike the Christian case, no Jewish states existed to compete with Islamic states.
     Jews had been dhimmi people in the Middle East and North Africa for *more than a thousand years.* By way of contrast, Black people were enslaved in the Americas starting ‘only’ about 400 years ago. And yet consider the ferocity with which many white Americans responded to the abolition of slavery (lynchings were common in the post-Civil War South). If one views a person as one’s *natural inferior*, then attempts at equality can be perceived as an affront and an abuse.
     Why did millions of Arabs all over North Africa and the Middle East, who never met a Zionist, hate them? There are two reasons. First, they did not act like proper dhimmis. Second, the Zionist Jews carried the dangerous contagion of modern ideas. Of course, there were differences among them. "The Jews" are not some monolithic group. But many brought to the Middle East the ideas of liberal democracy, secular education, and female equality - even socialism. These ideas not only challenged aspects of Arab culture but, if allowed to spread, could destroy the power of ruling elites throughout the Arab world (in 1900 and today as well).
     So the immigrant Jews were challenging dhimmitude, a key part of the social fabric, and also had dangerous ideas.
     This helps explain why the Mufti of Jerusalem, Nasser, Arafat, Hamas, etc. have not merely called for *defeating* Israel and/or extracting political concessions, but rather have always agitated for its total *destruction*. The existence of a Jewish State in the Middle East is seen as an offense to the natural order of Allah-proclaimed Jewish inferiority - and as a source of ideas that challenge the traditional Middle Eastern practices and power-relations. Arab leaders use both these perceived offenses to mobilize popular support from the Arab 'street.'
     This also explains some otherwise odd facts. For example, the Mufti, Hajj Amin al-Husseini, organized a murderous attack against Jewish civilians in 1920. It was directed primarily at members of the Old Yishuv. These were not recent Jewish immigrants. Their families had been in Palestine for over 2000 years.[45a] In 1929, Mufti-organized Arabs slaughtered Jews in Hebron and other towns. Although Palestinian leaders speak of the Hebron massacre as a heroic act of resistance to Zionism,[45b] in fact it was a terrorist pogrom, and directed largely at indigenous Palestinian Jews, not recent immigrants.[45c]
     The context of dhimmitude explains why so much terrorist violence was directed against non-immigrant Jews in Palestine. By presenting themselves as equal to Muslims, the Zionists had cancelled the dhimma; therefore jihad could resume. Since the dhimma was an agreement that applied to the entire community, *all* Jews were now subject to jihad slaughter.
     Thus, what was misperceived by Westerners as an irrational outbreak of communal hatred was in fact a continuation - albeit in modern dress - of an ancient cultural interaction: the lynching of dhimmis, much like the lynching of uppity Black people in the post-Civil War U.S. South.
     This explains why many North African and Middle-Eastern Muslims welcomed Nazi anti-Semitism. The German Nazi ideology coincided with their view of what should be done to ‘uppity Jews.’
     "Murder the Jews! Murder them all!"
     Bad as the situation became for Jews in Muslim countries with the approach and explosion of World War II, the 1948 war in Palestine (the Israeli War of Independence) made things infinitely worse. The Arab-dominated states where the Mizrachim (‘Oriental Jews’) lived in 1948, declared war - en masse - against the tiny strip of land that proclaimed itself the new State of Israel.[46]
     The Egyptian, Syrian, Lebanese, Jordanian and Saudi armies and Iraqi and Palestinian irregulars did not invade Israel because it had attacked or threatened those countries, but because Israel had chosen to *exist*. By doing so it had cancelled the dhimma on a grand scale.
     When the dhimma is cancelled, jihad resumes. Thus in 1947 the Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Amin al-Husseini issued a fatwa: "I declare a holy war, my Moslem brothers! Murder the Jews! Murder them all!"[47]
     Azzam Pasha, the Secretary General of the Arab League, promised: "This will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacres and the Crusades.”[48]
     Arab leaders didn't bother to deny they had started the fighting. addressing the UN Security Council in April 1948, Jamal Husseini, Spokesperson for the Mufti's Arab Higher Committee, said: "The representative of the Jewish Agency told us yesterday that they were not the attackers, that the Arabs had begun the fighting. We did not deny this. We told the whole world that we were going to fight."[49]
     The war was unprovoked except by the fact that Israel declared itself in existence. But that was hardly a provocation and therefore this was a war of aggression. To launch it was a crime and, moreover, civilians were - again - the target.
     The return to a state of jihad made the situation of Jews living in Arab countries extremely dangerous even if they had nothing to do with the Zionist movement, which was European in origin.
     As sociologist Shlomo Swirski writes in “Israel: The Oriental Majority”:[50]
     “…the military confrontation between the Jews in Palestine and the Palestinian Arabs and the armies of the Arab states in 1947-49 created an impossible climate for the Jews living throughout the Middle East and North Africa. Within a short period of time, they evacuated en masse to the new state of Israel. Whole communities were transplanted - most of the 130,000 Jews of Iraq, the 45,000 Jews of Yemen, and the 35,000 of Libya - as well as substantial parts of other communities, from Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia in the west to Iran in the east. From 1948 to 1956, a total of some 450,000 Jews arrived in Israel from Asia and Africa, compared to 360,000 Jews from Europe and America.”
     So the Oriental Jews didn’t simply migrate to Israel; they *fled* the countries where their ancestors had lived for a hundred generations or more.[51] They lost virtually everything they owned.
     The numbers cited above are staggering. As hundreds of thousands of Oriental Jews fled, countries which once had large Jewish communities became virtually Judenfrei. And according to a Library of Congress study, “By the early 1970s, the number of Israelis of African-Asian origin outnumbered European or American Jews.”[52]
     In 1985, the Oriental Jews were “the majority of the Israeli Jewish population - 43.3% - of first and second-generation Israelis…[including non-Jews]”[53] In fact, “until the recent Russian immigration, the majority in Israel was the 900,000 Jewish refugees from Arab countries, and their millions of children… Mizrachim are still today 50% of the Jewish population.”[54]
     Thus, the general perception that Arabs are the only refugees produced by the Arab-Jewish conflicts since 1947 is simply wrong. The difference is that Jewish refugees who fled to Israel - and who had everything taken from them in the process - became Israeli citizens (or citizens of other countries). By way of contrast, Palestinian refugees were refused citizenship by every Arab state except Jordan.
     And this means that the Arab states, not Israel, are responsible for the Palestinian refugee problem.
     Why didn't the Arab states let these Palestinians be citizens? To what end?
     Answer: to keep the refugees as a festering political sore that could - and still can - be used against the State of Israel. Whether the policy towards these refugees is cruel or benign, the attitude is the same: they are denied citizenship so they can be maintained as a political issue, to put Israel on the defensive.
     Consider the examples of Lebanon and Syria. The following quotes are from the Washington Report On Middle East Affairs, which is strongly biased in favor of Arab leaders’ view of the Palestinian conflict.[61] That bias makes their words especially credible on this point:[55]
     “Many Palestinian refugees in Lebanon still live in squalid camps…After more than half a century in exile, their situation remains precarious. Without citizenship, or even the same options as guestworkers from Egypt or Sri Lanka, the Palestinians cannot work in many occupations. Nor do they receive assistance from the cash-strapped Lebanese government. In some cases, residents are unable even to repair damaged houses because they cannot ‘import’ building materials into the camps.
     Because Beirut refuses to accept the de facto resettlement of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, the refugees have never been granted citizenship or residency rights by the Lebanese government, which wants to keep the pressure on Israel to permit the refugees’ return. This policy, however, has caused hardship for many Palestinians.”
     So Lebanon plays politics with the unfortunate lives of these Palestinians. According to Washington Report, the Syrian government’s policy is more benign, but it has the same political objective:
     “Circumstances for Palestinians just across the border in Syria are remarkably different. According to Angela Williams, director of UNRWA in Syria, the key reason is the Syrian government's official policy of hospitality toward the refugees. "They are not faced with the kind of restrictions they have in Lebanon," Williams explained. "Palestinians have the same access as Syrians to government services, education, government hospitals and employment. Here they can even purchase one parcel of domestic property for their own use."
     The extension of rights to Palestinian refugees in Syria stems from the government's philosophy that, rather than standing in the way of political aspirations, improved living conditions help to build up Palestinians’ ability to achieve a final settlement and return home when they are able. Although *they don’t have citizenship, cannot vote and cannot purchase farmland, Palestinians are fully integrated into Syrian society.”
     How can one be “fully integrated” into a society in which one cannot vote, be a citizen, or, if one is a farmer, start a farm? The answer is that one cannot, and that makes sense, because the Syrians want the Palestinians to “achieve a final settlement and return home.” Syria’s somewhat more benign policy follows their philosophy that a healthy and well-educated (but all the same politically-in-limbo and second-class) Palestinian is a sharper geopolitical weapon.
     We may contrast these attitudes with those of the Israeli government. Israel’s 1948 Declaration of Independence includes the following: “WE APPEAL - in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months - to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.”[56]
     UN Resolution 194, which was acceptable to the Israelis, stated in point 11 that, “…that refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property…” This resolution was *unanimously rejected* by the Arabs.[57]
     The perception, common in some circles, that the Israelis are to blame for the Palestinian refugee crisis will therefore not withstand historical scrutiny. I summarize the relevant facts:
     1) The post-World War II military confrontations between Jews and Arabs began when the 1947 UN partition plan “was immediately opposed by the [Palestinian] Arabs who...attacked Jews throughout Palestine as the British withdrew.”[58]
     2) The surrounding Arab states followed through with an unprovoked and simultaneous declaration of war on Israel in 1948.
     3) The anti-Semitism of the Arab states, heightened by the war against Israel, is what made the living conditions of the Mizrachim Diaspora so dangerous that they fled en masse to Israel. Thus, the Arab states *caused* a Jewish refugee crisis that the Israeli state then proceeded to absorb.
     4) The Arabs lost the 1948 war with Israel. The resulting Palestinian refugees were not given citizenship by the Arab countries that had created the refugee crisis by attacking Israel. (The exception is Jordan).
     The above list speaks for itself. One has to argue against it in order to lay the blame for the Palestinian refugee crisis on the Israelis.

5. Let Us Reassess

     If Hajj Amin al Husseini, the Nazi Mufti of Jerusalem, organized the Arab Higher Committee as his instrument of anti-Semitic violence; If the Mufti was an enthusiastic leader of Hitler's Final Solution; If veterans of the Mufti's Arab Higher Committee founded Fatah; If Arafat, the supreme leader of Fatah, boasts that he was Hajj Amin's foot soldier; If Arafat's Fatah, more radical even than the PLO, took over the PLO, which organization already called for the utter destruction of Israel; If the Oslo 'Peace' Process created the Palestinian Authority out of Arafat's PLO; If Yasser Arafat, right after signing the Oslo 'Peace' Process, said it was a covert strategy of jihad against Israel; If other prominent Palestinian leaders have echoed this statement, even calling the 'Peace' Process a Trojan Horse; If the terrorists in the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades are “the deadliest Palestinian militia”; and if they are part of Fatah, getting their salaries from Arafat; If the Tanzim, Fatah’s main militia, carries out attacks against Israeli civilians; and if it got the Al-Aqsa Intifada started; If the Al-Aqsa Intifada was planned well in advance, as the Palestinian Authority Communications Minister himself boasted...then, what follows?
     That the murderous racism of Palestinian leaders is not a recent aberration, nor does it result from Israeli provocations.
     Arafat's Fatah has been a millenarian Islamist and terrorist organization from the beginning. Any contrary appearance is the product of propaganda by the likes of Michael Elliot and Time magazine and the rest of the mainstream media.
     We are witnessing the rewriting of history in real time. My own recent naiveté stands in evidence: the bolder the lies involved in the rewrite, the less people notice. This is a principle Goebbels, Hitler’s minister of propaganda, and Hitler himself, understood well.
     Of course, one could say that the facts presented here - though they complete the picture - do not erase *other* facts, namely, that Israel has responded militarily by sending troops into the occupied territories. This is true: such facts remain. What *may* change, however, is the *interpretation* we give to them if the documentation presented here changes our view of the forces which the Israelis are and have been fighting.
     Terrible things happen in war. That is why launching a war of aggression is itself considered a crime. And of course, the worst wars are those intended not simply to conquer but to *eradicate* another people: for example, as in the mission to *liquidate* Israel and *purge* the Jews.
     This hatred and drive to exterminate another people is a recurrent theme in Arab hostility towards Jews in Israel and elsewhere, and constantly finds expression in revealing turns of phrase that betray the legacy of dhimmitude. The "lowly Jews," is how a high Iraqi official refers to them.[59] Or, as the Arab killers cried as they slaughtered Jewish men, women, and children in Hebron in 1929: "Palestine is ours and the Jews our dogs."
     "The [1929] riots [in Palestine] were accompanied by militant Arab slogans such as... 'Palestine is our land and the Jews our dogs...' [and] brutal acts by Arabs...such as the killings in Hebron, where small children were tortured by their murderers before being murdered. ...the Jewish community in Palestine found itself caught up in a wave of violent disturbances that swept with a fury through Jewish settlements and neighborhoods throughout the length and breadth of the country. The danger now appeared to threaten the very survival of the entire Jewish community." --Shapira, A. 1992. Land and power. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press, (p.174)
     Even anti-Zionists, such as Nathan Weinstock, recognize that this has been the tenor of the Palestinian movement:
     "...the Palestinian anti-colonialist movement was deformed by racism. The distorted national struggle expressed itself in anti-Jewish slogans ('Palestine is our country and the Jews are our dogs'), followed up by attacks upon Jewish passers-by and store-owners, and eventually in mob violence akin to the all-too familiar pogrom." --Nathan Weinstock, Zionism: False Messiah, London 1979.
     This jihad - this holy war - against the Jews, which has been waged non-stop by Arab leaders since the founders of the Zionist movement dared to challenge the dhimmi status of Jews in the Middle East, is not the responsibility of the Zionists or the state they founded. Israel has a right to exist and flourish.
     The honor of ending this war - this jihad - which causes so much suffering on both sides, rests primarily with Arabs, who are in the best position to do something. The first step would be to reject the leadership of the ideological descendants of Hajj Amin Al Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem, who even in death dominates his people’s political life and distorts their aspirations, leading them down a path of intolerance and war. The peoples of the Middle East deserve better. They deserve peace.
     I consider my current position now to be *truly* pro-Palestinian, because I am completely opposed to Yasser Arafat and his politics of murder and hate, which have brought so much suffering to the Palestinians, the people whose interests he claims to look after. And because I see a future of hope for the unfortunate Palestinians. Should Palestinians call forth a different kind of leader, different from Arafat and the Mufti of Jerusalem past, they would give to the Middle East the future that they, the Arab people, and the Jewish people, deserve.
     “El respeto al derecho ajeno, es la paz”
     [To respect the right of another, that is peace.]
     -- Benito Juarez (Oaxacan Indian, and former President of Mexico)

FOOTNOTES

[1] Time Magazine, June 10, 2002, NOTEBOOK; Pg. 18, 323 words, Arafat's "Zero" Motivation, Matt Rees/Ramallah, With Jamil Hamad/Bethlehem and Aharon Klein/Jerusalem

[2] Newsday (New York, NY), September 8, 2002 Sunday, NASSAU AND SUFFOLK EDITION, Pg. A05, 1333 words, WEST BANK; Inside the Crucible; An occasional series on te Israel-Palestine conflict; Militia Goes More Quietly; Al-Aqsa changes tactics after losses, By Matthew McAllester. MIDDLE EAST CORRESPONDENT

[3] TRAIL OF BLOOD:

- Jan 14 Al-Aqsa says it shot dead an Israeli near Nablus

- Jan 17 Member of al-Aqsa kills six at a batmitzvah in Hadera, northern Israel

- Jan 22 Al-Aqsa gunman opens fire on a bus queue in Jerusalem, injuring 16 people

- Jan 27 A female volunteer for Palestinian Red Crescent in Ramallah becomes first woman suicide bomber

- Feb 19 Al-Aqsa claims joint responsibility for a raid on a West Bank checkpoint, killing six Israeli soldiers

- Feb 25 Al-Aqsa gunman injures eight Israelis at a bus stop in Jerusalem

- March 3 Ten Israelis shot dead by al-Aqsa sniper at a West Bank checkpoint

- March 2 Al-Aqsa suicide bomber blows himself up in a crowd of mothers and babies in Jerusalem, killing nine

- March 14 Al-Aqsa gunmen kill two suspected informers in Bethlehem, dragging their bodies through the streets

- March 21 Al-Aqsa suicide bomber kills three Israelis and wounds dozens more in Jewish west Jerusalem

The Guardian (London), March 23, 2002, Guardian Foreign Pages, Pg. 15, 913 words, Killers revel in kudos of a US terrorism designation: Relentless atrocities attain dubious form of distinction for al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, Suzanne Goldenberg in Balata

[4] The Washington Post, March 07, 2002, Thursday, Final Edition, A SECTION; Pg. A01, 1530 words, A Magnet for Palestinian ‘Martyrs’; Al-Aqsa Brigades Lead New Wave of Attacks on Israeli Civilians, Daniel Williams, Washington Post Foreign Service, BETHLEHEM, West Bank

[5] You may read the full text of the Hamas Charter at http://www.palestinecenter.org/cpap/documents/charter.html

[6] Time, June 10, 2002, Essay; Pg. 76, 786 words, Not All Terrorists Are Alike; Some can actually be reasoned with, and India should test that theory in Kashmir, Michael Elliott

[7] “Palestine Liberation Organization” Encyclopædia Britannica; http://www.search.eb.com/eb/article?eu=59547

[Accessed September 20, 2002].

[8] The Associated Press, December 15, 1998, Tuesday, AM cycle, International News, 1070 words, Clinton meets with Netanyahu, Arafat, appeals for progress, By TERENCE HUNT, AP White House Correspondent, EREZ CROSSING, Gaza Strip

[9] “Palestine Liberation Organization” Encyclopædia Britannica; http://www.search.eb.com/eb/article?eu=59547

[Accessed September 20, 2002].

[10] Sachar, Howard Morley - A history of Israel : from the rise of Zionism to our time / Howard M. Sachar. 1982, c1979. (p.619)

[11] To read about the terrorism of the Arab Revolt, go here:

http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/Muftihistory.htm

[12] “Ex-Mufti, Criminal Ally,” by ‘Observer’ (Immanuel Velikovsky), New York Post, Monday, February 23, 1948;

http://www.varchive.org/obs/480223.htm

[13] Author: Germany. Auswärtiges Amt [Foreign Ministry]. Title: Documents on German foreign policy, 1918-1945, from the archives of the German Foreign Ministry. Akten zur deutschen auswärtigen Politik. English Publisher: Washington, U.S. Govt. Print. Off., 1949- Description: Book v. fold. maps. 24 cm.; Series D, Vol. XIII no. 515. NOTE: You may read the entire document at http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/muftihitler.htm

[14a] Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, Edition 1990, Volume 2, Pages 706 and 707, entry Husseini, Hajj Amin Al

[14b] http://emperors-clothes.com/bosnia/svijet.htm

[15] Library Of Congress Country Study - Israel; http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/iltoc.html

(Click on the heading “The Arab Community During The Mandate”)

[16] Shapira, A. (1992). Land and power. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[17] Library Of Congress Country Study - Israel; http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/iltoc.html

(Click on the heading “The Arab Community During The Mandate”)

[18] http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/Muftihistory.htm

[19] The following quote, from the Egyptian magazine Al-Ahram, makes clear the central role the Mufti played even after he had been exiled:

“On the eve of the [1947] UN Partition Resolution, Jaffa’s Arab population numbered over 70,000. By and large they supported the traditional Palestinian leadership headed by Haj Amin Al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti, though he himself had been exiled and was then residing in Cairo. To organise resistance, two members of the Arab Higher Committee, Sheikh Hassan Abou Al-Seoud and Rafiq Al-Tamimi, were sent to Jaffa to supervise the establishment of a National Committee. The composition of the Jaffa National Committee reflected the rather conservative leanings of the majority, though it did include some younger people who stood for less conservative trends. Besides the supporters of Haj Amin, there was also a Christian representation and some elements from the City Council. The Mayor, Dr. Youssef Heikal, was excluded because he was considered to be an enemy of the traditional supporters of Haj Amin, and a supporter of king Abdullah.”

http://www.ahram.org.eg/weekly/1998/1948/lughod.htm

[20] Sachar, Howard Morley - A history of Israel : from the rise of Zionism to our time / Howard M. Sachar. 1982, c1979. (p.682)

[21] Al Quds (Palestinian daily newspaper) Aug, 2, 2002

[22] http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/fatahpalestinians.htm

[23] Sachar, Howard Morley - A history of Israel : from the rise of Zionism to our time / Howard M. Sachar. 1982, c1979. (p.698)

[24] Sachar, Howard Morley - A history of Israel : from the rise of Zionism to our time / Howard M. Sachar. 1982, c1979. (p.698)

[25] Jewish Virtual Library;

http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/Peace/recogn.html

[26] Palestinian Media Watch has compiled a list of statements by high officials in the PLO and the PA, speaking to Arab audiences in Arabic, where they make clear that their goal has always been, and remains today, destroying Israel utterly. You may read this at:

http://www.pmw.org.il/bulletins-280802.html

[27] The Baltimore Sun, July 11, 2001 Wednesday, FINAL EDITION, Pg. 1A, 1574 words, Israelis taking darker view of Palestinian intentions; Many see existence of Jewish state at risk, Mark Matthews

[28] Al-Arabi’, 24 June, 2001

[29] John Wallach

http://www.usip.org/oc/newsroom/pr20020712.html

author of a biography of Yasser Arafat, wrote a Washington Post editorial dedicated to lionizing Faisal Husseini as a moderate. Without a hint of irony, he explained that “What angers the Israelis is that [Faisal] Husseini’s well-endowed Arab Studies Society published literature that *glorified* [my emphasis] some of Israel’s most brutal enemies, including Nazi sympathizers, and circulated ‘historical’ maps that show no place for Israel in the Middle East.” [The Washington Post, January 31, 1989, Tuesday, Final Edition, EDITORIAL; PAGE A17, 778 words, A Palestinian Israel Needs, Janet Wallach, John Wallach, OPINION EDITORIAL]

I suppose Wallach thinks that the Israelis are overly sensitive?

And where do Faisal Husseini’s Nazi sympathies come from? Just possibly, they could have something to do with the fact that he was the great nephew of the Grand Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini, an enthusiastic Nazi.

“[Faisal] Husseini was born in Baghdad, the son of a military hero, Abdel Khader Husseini. He was also the great-nephew of the Grand Mufti, and head of the Supreme Muslim Council, Hajj Amin Husseini.” [The Guardian (London), June 1, 2001, Guardian Leader Pages, Pg. 26, 1317 words, Obituary: Faisal Husseini: Palestinian politician renowned for his commitment to human rights who played a key role in the quest for peace with Israel, Lawrence Joffe]

And, for good measure, there is the elementary observation that Faisal Husseini’s deathbed statements (he gave the interview mentioned in the main text shortly before expiring) basically repeat the PLO’s millenarian founding charter. Husseini was saying that the Oslo ‘peace’ process had been invented to make Westerners believe in the PLO’s conversion to moderation, duping all sorts of people into supporting terrorists.

Now that we have put Faisal Husseini’s statements in the context of who he really is, do they appear surprising? No. And they are even less surprising if we have a proper understanding of how the Norwegian diplomacy which Husseini correctly characterized as a “Trojan Horse” really works, for Norwegian diplomats are in the business of cleaning up the image of terrorist organizations like the PLO. To read about that, visit this link:

http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/OsloWarb.htm

[30] Palestinian Media Watch has a rather long compilation of statements made by important Palestinian officials to Arab audiences, all of them explicitly stating that the only objective is and has always been the destruction of Israel - negotiations are just a charade. Read their compilation here:

http://www.pmw.org.il/bulletins-280802.html

[31] Courier Mail, April 9, 2002, Tuesday, WORLD; Pg. 9, 605 words, Arafat accused of fuelling hatred and inspiring martyrdom, Yehonathan Tommer

[32] Evening Standard (London) May 19, 1994; SECTION: Pg. 9; LENGTH: 907 words; HEADLINE: A NEW KIND OF JIHAD

[33] For an analysis of what Norwegian diplomacy is really for, see: http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~fjgil/OsloWarb.htm

[34] Associated Press Online, October 9, 2000; Monday, International news, 1866 words, Palestinians Blaming U.S. for Woes, LAURA KING, RAMALLAH, West Bank

[35] Associated Press Worldstream, March 2, 2001; Friday, International news, 363 words, Palestinian Cabinet minister says Palestinian uprising was planned, SIDON, Lebanon

[36] Deutsche Presse-Agentur, May 15, 2000, Monday, International News, 105 words, Palestinian minister urges kidnapping of Israelis for prisoner swap, Gaza City

[37] Deutsche Presse-Agentur, May 15, 2000, Monday, International News, 105 words, Palestinian minister urges kidnapping of Israelis for prisoner swap, Gaza City

[38] International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism; http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.cfm?orgid=82

[39] Newsday (New York, NY), September 8, 2002 Sunday, NASSAU AND SUFFOLK EDITION, Pg. A05, 1333 words, WEST BANK; Inside the Crucible; An occasional series on te Israel-Palestine conflict; Militia Goes More Quietly; Al-Aqsa changes tactics after losses, By Matthew McAllester. MIDDLE EAST CORRESPONDENT

[40] http://emperors-clothes.com/Film/judge.htm

[41] The Baltimore Sun, July 11, 2001 Wednesday, FINAL EDITION, Pg. 1A, 1574 words, Israelis taking darker view of Palestinian intentions; Many see existence of Jewish state at risk, Mark Matthews

[42] The Baltimore Sun, July 11, 2001 Wednesday, FINAL EDITION, Pg. 1A, 1574 words, Israelis taking darker view of Palestinian intentions; Many see existence of Jewish state at risk, Mark Matthews

[43] “Oriental Jews” Encyclopædia Britannica http://www.search.eb.com/eb/article?eu=58803

[Accessed September 17, 2002]

[44] Sachar, Howard Morley - A history of Israel : from the rise of Zionism to our time / Howard M. Sachar. 1982, c1979. (pp.195-196)

[45a] "...the disturbances during the al-Nebi Musa celebrations in April 1920, were limited to Jerusalem. A large angry crowd of Arabs surged through Haffa Gate into the narrow alleyways of the Old City and attaacked Jews whom it encountered along the way. There were also attempts by ARabs to assault Jews in the newer sections of Jerusalem." -- Shapira, A. (1992). Land and power. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press, p.110.

[45b] In his statement "Palestine Between Dreams And Reality" Dr. George Habash, then General Secretary of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, states that:

"Our people did not understand the purposes of the first wave of Jewish pioneers to our country. But when the Jews set about buying up the land, our people...ignited a series of struggles, beginning with pickets and demonstrations, through the Buraq Uprising (the 1929 confrontation over Jewish attempts to seize control of part of Jerusalem adjacent to the so-called Wailing Wall), down to the strike and Revolt of 1936."

http://members.tripod.com/~freepalestine/gh2000.html

Clearly, Habash is proud of the 1929 disturbances. Indeed, he presents them as an anti-colonial struggle. Notice also that he refers only to the peaceful means of "pickets and demonstrations." Now let's see how historians describe the event:

"The [1929] riots were accompanied by militant Arab slogans such as 'The law of Muhammad is being implemented by the sword,' 'Palestine is our land and the Jews our dogs,' 'We are well armed and shall slaughter you by the sword.' There were also brutal acts by Arabs for the apparent sake of cruelty, such as the killings in Hebron, where small children were tortured by their murderers before being murdered. The dread that the Arabs were planning to annihilate the entire Jewish community - men, women, and children - in one concentrated burst of violence surfaced for the first time in the wake of the August 1929 disturbances...For the first time, the Jewish community in Palestine found itself caught up in a wave of violent disturbances that swept with a fury through Jewish settlements and neighborhoods throughout the length and breadth of the country. The danger now appeared to threaten the very survival of the entire Jewish community." --Shapira, A. 1992. Land and power. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press, (p.174)

[45c]"The 1929 troubles constituted a crossroads...The hardest hit localities had been Hebron and Safed, mixed towns were Jews had lived together with Arabs for many generations...Moreover, the communities in those two towns were of the 'old Yishuv': deeply religious, non-Zionist Jews. They did not carry weapons or know how to protect themselves; nor did they believe their neighbors would harm them. In the aftermath of the riots, the surviving remnants of the old Jewish community in Hebron left the town. The Jews who were evacuated from Gaza during the riots never returned there." -- Shapira, A. (1992). Land and power. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press, (p.176).

[46] To get an idea just how tiny, we have posted two maps. One compares Israel to the countries of the Middle East and North Africa. The other map shows that including Gaza and the West Bank, Israel is almost as big as Vancouver Island.

Compared to the Arab world:

http://www.iris.org.il/sizemaps/arabwrld.htm

Compared to Vancouver Island:

"http://www.iris.org.il/sizemaps/vancouv.htm

[47] Leonard J. Davis and M. Decter (eds.). Myths and facts 1982; a Concise Record of the Arab-Israeli Conflict (Washington DC: near east report, 1982), p. 199

[48] Howard M Sachar, A History of Israel (New York: Knopf, 1979), p. 333

[49] Security Council Official Records, S/Agenda/58, (April 16, 1948), p. 19

[50] Swirski, Shlomo. 1989. Israel: The Oriental Majority. London & New Jersey: Zed Books Ltd. (pp. 3-4)

[51] For a more personal account of the plight of the Mizrahim, go to http://www.loolwa.com/crisis.html

[52] “ISRAEL A Country Study,” Federal Research Division Library of Congress. Edited by Helen Chapin Metz. Research Completed December 1988 http://memory.loc.gov/frd/cs/iltoc.html

(Consult the chapter titled “POPULATION.”)

[53] Swirski, Shlomo. 1989. Israel: The Oriental Majority. London & New Jersey: Zed Books Ltd. (p.3)

[54] A MIZRAHI PERSPECTIVE ON THE CURRENT MIDDLE EAST CRISIS, by Loolwa Khazoom;

http://www.loolwa.com/crisis.html

[55] Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon and Syria Face Different, Uncertain Futures. Dec2000, Vol. 19 Issue 9, p26; Washington Report on Middle East Affairs; by Fecci, JoMarie

[56] Text of the Israeli Declaration of Independence:

http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/History/Dec_of_Indep.html

[57] “The Palestinian Refugees”, by Mitchell Bard

http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/History/refugees.html

[58] “on November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly voted to divide British-ruled Palestine into two states, one Jewish and the other Arab. This decision was immediately opposed by the Arabs who, under the ostensible leadership of Hajj AmYn al-SusaynY , the grand mufti of Jerusalem, attacked Jews throughout Palestine as the British withdrew.” “Israel” Encyclopædia Britannica http://www.search.eb.com/eb/article?eu=109507

[Accessed September 23, 2002].

[59] www.emperors-clothes.com/letters/shussein.htm#l

[60] Ex-Mufti, Criminal Ally,” by ‘Observer’ (Immanuel Velikovsky), New York Post, Monday, February 23, 1948.

http://www.varchive.org/obs/480223.htm

[61] If you go the WRMEA website

http://www.wrmea.com/

you will find, on the upper left, a real-time ticker that purports to show the amount of money that the US is sending Israel. The message: Israel is a US puppet.

When I accessed the website, on 1/8/03, I found articles with titles such as these: "Israel Uses Terror to Derail Peace Efforts and Establish Permanent Occupation"; "Israel’s Indifference to Civilian Lives"; "A State for All Its Citizens—One Palestinian’s Dream of Peace"; "U.S. Opinion Polls Show Growing Support for Palestinians"; "Why the Push to Attack Iraq? Two Views"; "Richard Perle’s Stealth Attack on Saudi Arabia." Etc. That this outfit has a pro-Arab bias is more than clear.

[62] “It was not clear how military victory could be turned into peace. Shortly after the war’s end Israel began that quest, but it would take more than a decade and involve yet another war before yielding any results. Eshkol’s secret offer to trade much of the newly won territory for peace agreements with Egypt, Jordan, and Syria was rejected by Nasser, who, supported by an emergency resupply of Soviet arms, led the Arabs at the Khartoum Arab Summit in The Sudan in August 1967 in a refusal to negotiate directly with Israel.” -- "Israel" Encyclopædia Britannica

http://www.search.eb.com/eb/article?eu=109507

[Accessed October 27, 2002].

[63] To read about the dhimma, which institutionalized racism against Christians and Muslims in Arab lands, visit: http://www.dhimmitude.org/

                    
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