Netanyahu – Mufti Kerfuffle: Ask Yourself Why Doves are Enraged

Cross posted from the blog of Elliott Jager

Here is what you need to know about Amin Husseini.

He was born in 1895 and died in 1974. He was appointed Grand Mufti of Jerusalem by the British Mandate authorities.

And, he is infamous in Jewish history as a collaborator with the Nazis.

He was a proponent of militant violence against Jews and against any Arabs who were willing to make peace with the Zionist enterprise. 

When WWII broke out he made his headquarters in Iraq and tried to establish a pro-Nazi regime there. When that didn’t work out, he moved to Italy (an Axis power) and then to Germany.

He openly supported the Final Solution – this is not in doubt.

He helped the Nazis set up Bosnian-Muslim Waffen-SS battalions. He lobbied the Nazis to bomb Tel Aviv and to extend the net of the Holocaust to Sephardi Jews in Arab lands. 

He vehemently opposed any tactical deals (“trucks for Jews,” etc) that would have even temporarily spared Jewish lives.

After the war he was welcomed and given refuge by Nasser in Egypt.

Now, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech at the World Zionist  Congress in Jerusalem yesterday (Oct. 20) garnered criticism for supposedly misstating the Mufti’s role in the Shoah.

Here’s what the PM said:

“…And this attack and other attacks on the Jewish community in 1920, 1921, 1929, were instigated by a call of the Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini, who was later sought for war crimes in the Nuremberg trials because he had a central role in fomenting the final solution.

“He flew to Berlin. Hitler didn’t want to exterminate the Jews at the time, he wanted to expel the Jews.

And Haj Amin al-Husseini went to Hitler and said, “If you expel them, they’ll all come here.” “So what should I do with them?” he asked. He said, “Burn them.”


Now, the point of the reference to the Mufti is that he was among the first to claim that the Jews wanted to destroy al-Aksa mosque.

Netanyahu did not say that the Mufti convinced Hitler to annihilate the Jews. 

It is simply true that as the destruction of European Jewry evolved from 1933 until 1945 the Nazis tried different approaches to solving the “Jewish problem.”

And yes, there was a stage when in parallel to killing Jews haphazardly (clubbing, shooting, etc) and well before the industrial destruction had been perfected, the Nazis did consider expulsion.

According to Joseph Schechtman’s The Mufti and the Fuehrer, the mufti began his outreach to the Nazis on July 21, 1937 via the German consul in Jerusalem.

Keep in mind that at the time, the Nazis still had hopes to keep Britain out of any war so didn’t want to rock the boat in British-controlled Palestine.

Nonetheless, the mufti sent an agent to Berlin to lobby the Nazis.

In fact, Adolph Eichmann was dispatched to Palestine to study the situation in response to the Mufti’s lobbying efforts.  He was also in contact with Husseini.

Actually, there is some evidence that already in 1936, the Nazis were helping the Arabs in Palestine.

Obviously, there is much more to be said about the Mufti and the Nazis.

But what matters in 2015 is this:

(1) The claim that the Jews want to change the status quo on the Temple Mount dates back at least to the Mufti’s days.

(2) The fierce criticism by dovish Jewish journalists, pundits, and politicians (and of course the foreign media and the Arabs) of Netanyahu is intended to undermine his not-so-subtle implication that Arab intentions then and now are much the same.

That is the crux of the issue.

If you believe the conflict is about boundaries and settlements then you want to play down the extraordinary consistency of Arab intentions. 

Why? Because it is almost too painful to imagine that the Palestinian Arabs today really want what the Palestinian Arabs of 1933 or 1929 wanted.

So if you think that Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatah are not disciples of the mufti’s values then you need to be offended by Netanyahu’s efforts to link the Nazis to the Palestinian cause. Of course, you also need to keep your eyes tightly closed.

20 replies »

  1. The Mufti also
    – organised the Einsatzgruppe Aegypt which was to extend Nazi genocide to all the Jews of the Mideast
    – organised the Farhud in Iraq
    – was indicted by Yugoslavia for war crimes.

    This hero of the Palestinians was an enabler of genocide, a butcher who should have been hanged with his friends at Nuremberg.

  2. “After the war he was welcomed and given refuge by Nasser in Egypt” – well, at that point Nasser was probably a captain, maybe major, and the British were still in charge, so that’s inaccurate at best.

    • In 1945, Yugoslavia sought to indict the Mufti as a war criminal for his role in recruiting 20,000 Muslim volunteers for the SS, who participated in the killing of Jews in Croatia and Hungary. He escaped from French detention in 1946, however, and continued his fight against the Jews from Cairo and later Beirut. He died in 1974.

      (It matters little what rank Nasser held in the light of the above, doesn’t it?)

      • Historical accuracy obviously matters little to you. It matters to me. It was not ‘after the war’, except in the sense that 2015 is also ‘after the war’.

        • Husayni and Nasser weren’t strangers. Even Wiki notes:

          “Nasser’s first battlefield experience was in Palestine during the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.[33] He initially volunteered to serve with the Arab Higher Committee (AHC) led by Mohammad Amin al-Husayni.”

          Once in power, Nasser made Egypt hospitable for Nazi war criminals, and would certainly not have hesitated to welcome Husayni had he been in power just a few years earlier.

  3. Enraged? No, totally amused at the Holocaust revisionism – a form of denial – by the hapless Booboo

    • Coen you will enjoy this clip much better. Your friends speak to us:
      An exerpt only for you in English:
      This is a message to all the Jews, who are the Muslims’ No. 1 enemy,
      The real war has not begun and everything you have experienced so far has been child’s play — nothing compared to what will happen to you soon enough, inshallah [God willing].
      We promise you that soon, not one Jew will be left [alive] in Jerusalem or across Israel and we will continue until we eradicate this disease [Judaism?] from the world,” he goes on.
      Look at what has happened to you in a few vehicular and stabbing attacks from our brothers in Palestine,” he mocks. “You lost your minds and started fearing every driver that sped up. You were even scared of every person carrying something in their hand.

      This is the high time for you to join the fight!

      • I didn’t know you were such a stickler for the Holocaust. You know, since you’re such a stickler over Apartheid. Wow, Jonathan, you really know a lot about racism and genocide. Is this because you are what you eat?

    • “.. totally amused at the Holocaust revisionism – a form of denial…”

      So you find ‘Holocaust revisionism’ or a ‘form of denial’ amusing?
      You ‘Jonathan’ are a sick and repugnant individual.

    • The idiotic claim that there is ‘Holocaust denial’ involved here is doing the rounds, yes, but in every case it is evidence of the writer’s lack of reading comprehension and/or logical analysis skills.

  4. The Grand Mufti tries unsuccessfully to persuade the Bey of the French Protectorate of Tunisia to endorse anti-Jewish persecution at the time of the roughly six months Italian- German occupation – this Bey was well disposed towards Jews. When doing academic research I requested information about documents in the German archives and received a copy of a letter addressed by the Grand Mufti to the Bey.

    People who follow this site and understand German will be interested in this Bundesarchiv collection of Grand Mufti documents.