The Palestinian Leader Haj Amin Al - Husseini and Hitler / DR.Saul Bartal

Haj Amin Al – Husseini activities in Germany during the Second World War

Haj Amin Ben Taher Ben Mustafa Ben Taher Al-Aswadi Al-Husseini was born in 1895 in Jerusalem, to a religious family originating from the Hijaz. There are family branches also in Gaza (Yasser Arafat’s family) and in Lod. In 1921 he was appointed to be Mufti of Al-Quds (Jerusalem). A year later he was appointed President of the Palestinian Supreme Muslim Council, a position he held until his last day. In 1939, following the failure of the Great Arab Revolt, he fled to Germany, where he found an “open ear” with Hitler. Offices of the Arab Higher Committee, of which he was president, were opened in Rome and in Berlin, and he started to operate alongside the Axis Powers. The Axis Powers had agreed to provide the Mufti with the following commitments:

1. To recognize the right for independence of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine.

2. To recognize the Arab entitlement over Palestine and to abolish and erase “the Jewish Home” in Palestine and in the entire Middle East; this, based on a memorandum of Schmidt from 30.11.1941 about the meeting of Hitler and the Mufti on 28.11.1941.

3. To prevent at all costs Jewish immigration to Palestine, and to thwart any deal or collaboration aiming to save Jews. Jennie Lebel’s book contains evidence that the Nazi’s activity was coordinated with the Mufti.

There were also additional requirements that were not directly connected to the Palestinians. Hitler principally agreed to these requirements, but claimed that it is too early to announce them before the Allies are defeated. The Mufti, however, already announced about the German commitments in his addresses to the regiments of volunteers in North Africa and in Eastern Europe. Even Hitler was surprised by the recruitment and organization of the Muslims that joined him. His response was: “I am neither afraid from the Anglo-American-Jewish imperialism nor from the world-wide Jewish Communism, but I am afraid from Islam”. The Mufti’s collaboration was expressed in the following areas:

1. Training of Palestinian youth in German military colleges.

2. Recruitment of 100,000 Bosnians to the ranks of the Axis Powers.

3. Participation in the 1941 Rashid Ali Al-Keilani revolt in Iraq (a revolt against the British rule in Iraq, organized by the Mufti’s emissary).

4. Setting up “Free Arabia” – An Arab unit within the German Wehrmacht.

5. Obtaining a large amount of weapons for the war in Palestine. The weapons were stored in Libya, Egypt and Rhodes.

6. Creating an Islamic Training Institute (Al-Da’awa) in Germany. The purpose of this infrastructure was to train a cadre of Muslims that would support the Germans and recruit Muslims from all over the world, so that they can be trained in all the necessary military aspects required for the establishment of an Islamic army alongside the Axis Powers.

7. Activity against the rescue of Jewish children from Croatia, Budapest and from all over Hungary.

8. Being part of Eichmann’s Jewish Department, and closely assisting Eichmann in the organization of the Holocaust of the European Jewry.

9. Official documentation demonstrates that Haj Amin made all efforts to prevent the immigration of Eastern European Jews to Palestine. On June 1944, He addressed the German Authorities in the matter. On 10/6/1943, the Mufti sent another letter to “Il Duce” Mussolini, who served then as Foreign minister, and pleaded him, among other things, to prevent the immigration of 700 Polish children having relatives in Palestine. The Mufti’s letters can be found in Jennie Lebel’s book, Haj Amin and Berlin, pp. 186-192. In this book, Jennie Lebel proves that the Mufti was aware of the extermination of 6 million Jews.

10. Involvement in “Operation Atlas” – Poisoning of the Rosh Ha’ain springs in order to kill the residents of Tel Aviv and its surrounding settlements (“Gush Dan” of our days). German and Palestinians paratroopers landed in the area of Jericho with 10 lethal poison containers, which – according to estimations - could kill about one million people.
Sources on Haj Amin
The best source to the Mufti’s crimes is the courageous book of Jennie Lebel , Haj Amin and Berlin. Being a marked bill of indictment against the Mufti, the advantages of this book are as follows:

1. The book presents photos of original letters, alongside other sources.

2. The documents presented in the book are mostly based on German documentation and on the translation of German certificates as well as German and Yugoslavian press.

Moreover, the book’s content is verified and reinforced by Arab sources. This includes the Mufti’s book, Hakaik An Kadiet Falastin [The Truth about the Palestine Problem] , in which he claims that Hitler hated the Jews and wanted to exterminate them, because they were guilty of the German defeat in World War I, because they greatly harmed the Germans during the war, and because they operated a spying service against Germany. And therefore, Hitler wants to get revenge against this damned race in the Second World War.

The Mufti’s book contains also personal letters of blessings he received from Hitler, in support of the Palestinian struggle over the land of Israel. He considered Hitler to be an exalted figure. All the abovementioned in based on the Mufti’s own testimony, in Arabic, within a book that he wrote and that was published during the Nineteen Fifties (I have the book in my private library).

Following the war, Yugoslavia added the Mufti Haj Amin to its list of war criminals that operated from its territory. He was entered into the list based on resolution 1892 of the Yugoslavian Committee for the Determination of War Criminals from 19/7/1945. His name was put in the list of the top criminals who committed international crimes in Yugoslavian soil under Article 23 to the 1943 Hague Convention, because he organized the recruitment of Muslims to the German Waffen SS division on Yugoslavian soil. The committee’s arguments are also valid today. A similar resolution, no. 190, was passed by the Bosnia Herzegovina War Criminals Committee, on 17/8/1945. Both these lists were properly submitted to the U.N. Yugoslavia requested France to extradite him, but later reconsidered its request following heavy pressure, probably exerted by the Soviet Union. Nevertheless, the Mufti’s name still appears in the U.N Second World War Criminals lists.

Moreover, when the Mufti stayed in France, there were numerous demands among the British public to commit him to trial, due to his activities against the United Kingdom within the Arab world and in Europe, as well as his call for Jihad against the British and all of his pro-German activities during the war, while being a citizen under the British Mandate administration. Similar voices were also heard in the United States, demanding to prosecute him within the Nierenberg Trials , but Western countries were concerned about the prospective Arab response to such measures. Reluctant to put him on trial, France allowed the Mufti to flee to Cairo. In Cairo, and later in Beirut, the Mufti could live safely, out of his pursuers’ reach. In 1974, the Mufti died in old age.

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