Whitewashing the Arab historical record has long been the practice not only of Arab spokesmen but of the Arabs' Western and Communist sympathizers. Among the most persistent efforts to this end have been the denial and belittling of Arab involvement with the Nazis and the Holocaust.
In fact, many Arab nationalist leaders - from Morocco in the west to Iraq in the east - not only sympathized with the Nazis but cooperated with German agents before and during World War 2. The most outstanding Arab Nazi collaborator, however, was the leader of the Palestinian Arabs, Haj Muhammud Amin el-Husseini, Mufti of Jerusalem.
Husseini spent most of World War 2 in the Axis domain in Europe. He conferred officially with Mussolini and Hitler. In a petition he submitted together with other Arab leaders, Husseini urged the Fuehrer in the name of the Arab nation to recognize the Arab right to solve "the Jewish Question" in the Arab countries. Later he helped the Germans recruit an SS division among the Bosnian Muslims, exerting his influence over their imams, later on inspiring them during their service.
One researcher tells us, "The Mufti worked closely with the Nazi machinery responsible for exterminating Jews." (1)
This apparatus was part of the SS headed by his friend Himmler. Husseini made energetic efforts to further the mass murder process by preventing the emigration of Jews from the Axis domain. He petitioned the governments of Axis Croatia, Hungary, Rumania, and Bulgaria, as well as their patrons in Germany and Italy, and neutral Turkey, (2) to prevent Jews from leaving the Axis zone.
Towards the end of the war, when the Axis satellite states of Eastern Europe could see the looming Nazi defeat, they made plans to release Jews, especially children, from their territory, in return for various considerations or perhaps in order to clear themselves with Allied public opinion. The Mufti, hearing of these plans, exerted his considerable diplomatic influence among the Germans and their satellites to stop these children and adults from escaping their fate under the Nazis. For instance, Husseini wrote to the Prime Minister of Bulgaria, an Axis partner, urging Bulgaria to send 4,000 Jewish children to Poland where they would be "under stringent control" in his words (letter of June 5, 1943). These children, he asserted, presented "a degree of danger to Bulgaria whether they be kept in Bulgaria or be permitted to depart from that country." (3)
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