To fully understand the current situation, history must be recalled. Acknowledged by the United Nations and the attendant community of nations, Israel became a recognized and sovereign state on May 14, 1948. Immediately, five armies of Egypt, Syria, Transjordan (which was renamed Jordan one year later, in 1949), Lebanon and Iraq invaded the fledgling country. Their combined intention, celebrated enthusiastically all over the Arab world, was expressed plainly and publicly by Azzam Pasha, Secretary-General of the Arab League: “This will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre, which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacres and the Crusades.” Hence, scarcely a few years after the Holocaust and resultant identification of Crimes Against Humanity, the intent of these Arab states toward the tiny new State of Israel was openly genocidal.
On May 15, 1967, Israel’s 19th Independence Day, Egyptian troops began moving openly into the Sinai, massing aggressively near the Israeli border. By May 18, Syrian troops, too, were preparing for battle along the Golan Heights, almost 3000 feet above the Galilee, from which they had been shelling Israel’s farms and villages for several years. Egypt’s Nasser ordered the UN Emergency Force (UNEF), stationed in the Sinai since 1956, to withdraw. After the withdrawal of UNEF, the Voice Of The Arabs proclaimed, on May 18, 1967: “As of today there no longer exists an international emergency force to protect Israel. We shall exercise patience no more. We shall not complain any more to the UN about Israel. The sole method we shall apply against Israel is total war, which will result in the extermination of Zionist existence.”
Two days later, a jubilant echo came from Hafez Asad, then the Syrian Defense Minister: “Our forces are now entirely ready… to initiate the act of liberation itself, and to explode the Zionist presence in the Arab homeland…. The time has come to enter into a battle of annihilation.” President Abdur Rahman Aref of Iraq joined the chorus of genocidal threats: “The existence of Israel is an error which must be rectified. This is our opportunity to wipe out the ignominy which has been with us since 1948. Our goal is clear – to wipe Israel off the map.”
Today, in early 2004, this goal remains fixed and unchanged. Significantly, the goal remains nothing less than another Jewish genocide. Arab terrorism, as a complementary strategy of attrition, is consciously directed at the very same goal. With particular reference to the Palestinians, the Charter of Hamas – the Islamic Resistance Movement – exclaims proudly: “There is no solution to the Palestinian problem except by Jihad… In order to face the usurpation of Palestine by the Jews, we have no escape from raising the banner of Jihad…. We must imprint on the minds of generations of Muslims that the Palestinian problem is a religious one to be dealt with on this premise…. “I swear by that (sic.) who holds in his hands the Soul of Muhammad: I indeed wish to go to war for the sake of Allah! I promise to assault and kill, assault and kill, assault and kill.”
Arab/Islamic plans for genocidal extermination of Israel have never been kept secret, perhaps because these plans don’t really disturb the rest of the world. With rampant anti-Semitism again in fashion, especially in “civilized” Europe, few seem to recall that, prior to 1967 – when all Arabs were already screaming for Israel’s “annihilation” and “liquidation” – there were no “Palestinian territories” under Israeli control. Exactly what was the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Arab world in general seeking to “liberate” between 1948 and 1967, when Gaza was held illegally by Egypt and Judea/Samaria (West Bank) illegally by Jordan?
To the Arab world, Israel’s existence is everywhere denied – even its manifest physical presence on the planet. No map, no official documents, no school textbooks include the State of Israel. The official maps of the Palestinian Authority, an Authority whose alleged recognition of Israel has always been a precondition for all “peace” negotiations, incorporate all of Israel into Palestine. Cartographically, Israel has already been destroyed. This is the case despite the fact that a sovereign state of “Palestine” has never existed in history and in spite of the fact that even the Koran fully acknowledges Israel as the home of the Jewish People.
The Arab world claims that all of Israel, not just Judea/Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza, is “occupied territory.” Yet, present-day Jordan was also born of the Palestine Mandate. It follows that if Israel has no right to exist, surely Hashemite Jordan is equally illegitimate and similarly “occupied.” Indeed, the initial PLO position on Jordan was precisely that the Hashemite Kingdom, too, lacks legitimacy, but that declaration of inter-Arab condemnation was handled efficiently by the late King Hussein with a wave of mass murder in September 1970. In that single month, a month that gave rise to the formation of an especially notorious Palestinian terrorist group called Black September, the “gentle” king (always a great favorite among Jewish peace groups) machine-gunned tens of thousands of his fellow Arabs and expelled thousands of others to exile in Lebanon.
There is no viable “Road Map” or “Geneva Initiative” peace process with Arab states or the
“Palestinian Authority” today, nor has there ever been such a process. The formal treaties existing between Israel and Egypt and Israel and Jordan are little more than a temporary expedient by the Arab parties to buy time for critical rearmament and doctrinal refinement. Even before Israel’s declaration of statehood in 1948, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, on November 28, 1941, met in Berlin with Adolph Hitler (even today a great hero in the Arab world). The subject of Haj Amin’s meeting with Hitler was “…the final solution of the Jewish Question.” Further, this meeting – which followed Haj Amin’s active organization of Muslim SS troops in Bosnia – included the Mufti’s promise to aid Nazi Germany in the War.
Haj Amin did everything possible to ensure Hitler’s success with the Final Solution. He even urged the foreign ministers of the Lesser Axis Powers (Italy, Rumania, Bulgaria) not to permit Jews to leave for Palestine. It was essential, Haj Amin asserted, that Jews be sent to countries “…where they would find themselves under active control, for example, in Poland, in order to protect oneself from their menace and avoid consequent damage.” The Haj, who was in regular contact with both Himmler and Eichmann, knew exactly what “active control” in Poland meant during the summer of 1943.
Now the Arab world seeks “active control” in Israel itself. They are preparing for genocidal war against Israel by developing weapons of mass destruction and claiming the “right of return” for a sea of “refugees.”
The Arab states – together with the Palestinians – argue as follows: The post- Holocaust concentration of Jews in “the Zionist entity” is decisive proof of Allah’s plan to make Jewish annihilation more practicable. Hence, the state created by the Jews to prevent another Holocaust is described by Israel’s genocidal enemies as the literal means to create another Holocaust. Moreover, unless all people of good will begin to recognize and understand this inversion of Israel’s purpose, Israel could indeed become the Arab/Islamic world’s Final Solution to the Jewish Question. This bitter irony is so overwhelming and terrible that it is almost unutterable, but it cannot be disregarded.
Let us all listen to the following hadith or Islamic religious interpretation: For all believing Muslims, according to both Hamas and the Palestinian National Authority, “…peace with Israel was and still remains nothing less than a poison threatening the life-blood of Islam…. The Prophet is said to have predicted a final war to annihilate the Jews. Muhammad had stated: “The hour (i.e., salvation) will not come until you fight against the Jews; and the stone would say, ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew behind me; come and kill him.'”
Now, after the “Road Map” and after the “Geneva Initiative,” attention must be paid. Preventing the crime of genocide must surely become more than a sterile codification of international law. To fully understand the present war of extermination against Israel, history must be recalled.
LOUIS RENE BERES was educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971) and is author of many books and articles dealing with Israeli security matters. He is Strategic and Military Affairs Analyst for The Jewish Press.