Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu recently came under fire for his comments about who was the first to propose a Holocaust against the Jews: Adolph Hitler, or the Palestinian Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini.
A few years ago, I produced the film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against The West”. It presents documentary evidence – including video – of the 1941 meeting and relationship between Hitler and the Palestinian Grand Mufti.
What exactly happened at their well-documented 1941 meeting? And who was the first to propose a Jewish Holocaust?
The late Professor Robert Solomon Wistrich reveals in “Obsession”: “There is a very important meeting between Hitler and the Mufti of Jerusalem on the 28th of November, 1941, of which we have a full protocol. And, what Hitler explains (to the Mufti) is that this is first and foremost a war of extermination against Jewry. And he (Hitler) tells him (the Mufti) to lock this secret in his heart – he is revealing it to the Mufti.”
So that was Netanyahu’s error: he got the order wrong. Hitler told the Palestinian Mufti about his plan to exterminate the Jews, not the other way around.
But what the Palestinian leader did with that information is remarkable, and the real issue.
Prof. Wistrich revealed that Hitler’s plan to kill Jews found welcoming ears among Palestinian leaders. Wistrich stated, “The anti-Semitism of the Nazis had a great appeal – already, in the mid-1930s – to many Arab nationalists and Islamic fundamentalists.”
The Palestinian Mufti was so impressed with Hitler’s plan to kill Jews that he personally traveled to Europe to train Bosnian Muslims to kill European Jews, alongside SS Nazi soldiers.
As former Hitler Youth Officer Alfons Heck observed in “Obsession”: “I was utterly astonished that the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem had raised a Panzer division of Bosnian Muslims to fight along with the Waffen SS.”
“It seemed strange to us that a Mufti, who was not a pure Aryan, was being received by Hitler. But they said ‘no’ – we have the same goal, which is the extermination of the Jews.”
They had the same goal: Both of them wanted to exterminate Jews. Hitler was the first to propose it, but Hitler found a fervent supporter in the leader of the Palestinians. As Historian Martin Gilbert put it in “Obsession”, “Hitler saw at once that this man not only could serve his purpose, but wanted to serve his purpose.”
So, why is this relevant today?
Today’s Palestinian leader says that the source of Palestinian discontent is the so-called Israeli “settlements.” As Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas claimed this week, “the [Israeli] occupation and its aggressive settlers…has brought our youth to a state of hopelessness and depression,” which led them to stab and shoot and run down Jewish mothers, fathers, grandparents and children in the latest Palestinian wave of terror.
But, if the occupation is the source of Palestinian discontent, then why were Arab leaders in the early 1940s already obsessed with killing Jews? This was before there were “settlements” or even a reborn State of Israel.
Clearly, this is not about so-called settlements. It’s about something a lot deeper.
And it’s not about who was the first to propose a Holocaust.
It’s about intolerance and hatred.
Looking to the future, it is imperative that leaders teach tolerance. The world needs to challenge extremism and promote dialogue, rather than spread misinformation and hate.
We, as the public, also have duty – to study our past, to understand the facts, and to ultimately ensure that history doesn’t repeat itself. Again.
Watch “Obsession” free of charge at this link.