Bibi’s Boo-Boo

In his recent address to the Zionist Congress, our Prime Minister made an historical boo-boo.

Discussing the Palestinian role in the Holocaust, he mentioned that Hitler was influenced to burn the Jews of Europe by the Palestinian Grand Mufti, Haj Amin el-Husseini.

It was Hitler’s original intention (and here and here only is Prime Minister Netanyahu correct) to expel the Jews from Germany. But most Jews were unsuccessful in obtaining visas for other countries and were forced to remain in Germany to await their fate.

The slaughter of Europe’s Jews began between 1939-1941, before Hitler and the Mufti met in Berlin. And when they did meet, el-Husseini promised Hitler the support of Bosnian Muslim troops to join the Nazis in their march towards destruction of European Jewry.

It needs be clarified that it was the Mufti who supported Hitler in his desire to keep Jews from flooding into Palestine.

The Palestinian people were not responsible and cannot be blamed for the Holocaust. Most Palestinian Arabs, however, supported the Mufti and applauded his radio remarks and his efforts to prevent Jews entering Palestine.

Hitler and the Mufti met on several occasions, the first on November 28, 1941. Hitler listened to the Mufti’s request, expressed Germany’s sympathy with the Arabs, but made no promises to the Mufti whatsoever.

On January 20, 1942, a conference of Nazi leaders and Hitler was held at the Berlin suburb of Wannsee. There the “entlosing” or Final Solution was decided. The Grand Mufti was not in Germany at that time and had no influence upon the discussions or decisions. It was completely Hitler’s commitment to the Nazi party that the Jews needed to be exterminated. Hitler and his Nazi cohorts were responsible for the extermination of six million Jews in Europe.

When the Mufti returned to Germany later that year he began a series of Arabic radio broadcasts to the Middle East urging an Arab uprising against the British. Throughout the war he organized all methods of propaganda on behalf of Nazi Germany and urged all Arabs to do their utmost to defeat the Allies.

How Bibi could have thought otherwise remains a mystery and a falsification of our tragic history.

On May 7, 1945, the day of Germany’s surrender, el-Husseini fled to Bern, Switzerland. He was denied asylum and was handed over to the French authorities. In France, he was kept under house arrest.

In 1946 Yugoslavia convicted the Mufti in absentia for organizing 26,000 Muslim soldiers to massacre Jews in Croatia and Hungary and sought his extradition.

France considered extraditing him but before he could be arrested he made his way to Cairo and to Beirut. He died in Cairo in 1974. Bibi’s correction should be made public. We need no further incitement with the Palestinians at this time.

About the Author
Esor Ben-Sorek is a retired professor of Hebrew, Biblical literature & history of Israel. Conversant in 8 languages: Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, German, Spanish, Polish & Dutch. Very proud of being an Israeli citizen. A follower of Trumpeldor & Jabotinsky & Begin.
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