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Abbas says Jews’ behavior, not anti-Semitism, caused the Holocaust

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H/T The Time Of Israel.

The words of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas are anti Semitic.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday said that the Holocaust was not caused by anti-Semitism, but by the “social behavior” of the Jews, including money-lending.

In a long and rambling at speech in Ramallah at a rare session of the Palestinian National Council, Abbas touched on a number of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories during what he called a “history lesson,” as he sought to prove the 3,000 year-old Jewish connection to the Land of Israel is false.

Abbas said his narrative was backed by three points made by Jewish writers and historians, the first being the theory oft-criticized as anti-Semitic that Ashkenazi Jews are not the descendants of the ancient Israelites.

Pointing to Arthur Kessler’s book “The Thirteenth Tribe,” which asserts Ashkenazi Jews are descended from Khazars, Abbas said European Jews therefore had “no historical ties” to the Land of Israel.

He went on to claim that the Holocaust was not the result of anti-Semitism but rather of the Jews “social behavior,  [charging] interest, and financial matters.”

Ghanem Nuseibeh

@gnuseibeh

I can’t believe what I am hearing. Abu Mazen on PA TV basically saying Hitler facilitated building Israel.

Abbas also claimed Israel was a European project from the start, saying that European leaders such as the United Kingdom’s Lord Arthur Balfour restricted the immigration of Jews to their countries while simultaneously promoting the immigration of Jews to the Land of Israel.

The 1917 Balfour Declaration endorsed the idea of a Jewish state in the Land of Israel.

The Balfour Declaration (Wikipedia)

“Those who sought a Jewish state weren’t Jews,” he said, repeating a claim he made in January when he said that the State of Israel was formed as “a colonial project that has nothing to do with Judaism” to safeguard European interests.

In that January speech, he said that European Jews during the Holocaust chose to undergo “murder and slaughter” over emigration to British-held Palestine.

However, on Monday, Abbas claimed that Adolf Hitler, whose Nazi regime was response for the murder of 6,000,000 Jews in the Holocaust, facilitated the immigration of Jews to Israel by reaching a deal with the Anglo-Palestine Bank (today Bank Leumi) under which Jews who moved to the British Mandate of Palestine could transfer all their assets there through the bank.

Hitler hosts Grand Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini in 1941 in Germany. (Heinrich Hoffmann Collection/Wikipedia)

The Palestinian leader has a long history of Holocaust denial. His 1982 doctoral dissertation was titled “The Other Side: the Secret Relationship Between Nazism and Zionism,” and he has in the past been accused of denying the scope of the Holocaust. The dissertation reportedly claimed that the six million figure of Holocaust victims was hugely exaggerated and that Zionist leaders cooperated with the Nazis.

Abbas, in his Monday address, made no mention of the Jews’ historic presence and periods of sovereignty in the holy land. Israel is the only place where the Jews have ever been sovereign or sought sovereignty.

We will not accept the US

Abbas also spoke at length about the failed peace process, saying that the corruption investigation that felled former prime minister Ehud Olmert was meant to prevent him from reaching a peace deal. Olmert has made similar accusations.

Abbas previously said he rejected Olmert’s peace offer a decade ago. The Olmert proposal provided for a near-total Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank and the Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem, and would have placed the Old City — home to Jerusalem’s most sensitive holy sites — under international control.

Abbas also again preemptively rejected the peace plan that the Trump administration is working on, amid an ongoing and deep rift with the US.

Abbas told the PNC that he plans to take unspecified “tough steps” soon against Israel and the United States.

Abbas told the hundreds of delegates that he was sticking to his rejection of any US proposals for an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal following the Trump administration’s recognition in December of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and a decision to move the US Embassy there in mid-May.

“This is completely unacceptable,” he said, during the opening of a four-day meeting in the West Bank. “We will not accept this deal, and we will not accept the US as the sole broker.”

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks while US President Donald Trump listens before a meeting at the Palace Hotel during the 72nd United Nations General Assembly on September 20, 2017, in New York. (AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski)

Abbas appeared to dismiss media reports quoting Saudi Arabia’s powerful crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, as saying the Palestinians should stop complaining and accept what they are being offered by the Trump administration.

Abbas did not refer to those reports specifically, but said he has been assured that Saudi Arabia remains supportive of the Palestinian positions. “We hear lots of rumors,” he told the delegates. “Don’t believe them.”

The 82-year-old Abbas warned that he might “take tough steps in the near future in our relationship with our neighbors (Israel) and the Americans.” He did not elaborate, but said they would be important and far-reaching.

Hamas and Gaza

The meeting of the Palestinian National Council comes at a time of deep divisions between Abbas and his domestic rival, the Hamas terror group that controls the Gaza Strip.

Hamas has raised its profile in recent weeks by organizing mass protests on the Gaza border with Israel. In the weekly marches, thousands of Palestinians gather near the border fence, with smaller groups approaching the barrier, throwing stones or firebombs and burning tires.

More than 40 protesters have been killed and more than 1,700 wounded by Israeli army fire over the past month, according to the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza. Israel, which has come under mounting international criticism for the use of lethal force against the protesters, says it has the right to defend its border. It accuses Hamas of using the protests as cover for attacks and has shown groups trying to breach the fence. Hamas has acknowledged that five of those killed on the first Friday of the riots were its members, and has since been silent on whether fatalities were its members.

Israel says the 6,000 residents of nearby Israeli communities would be in mortal peril if the Hamas-led Palestinians breached the fence.

Palestinians take part in demonstrations near the border with Israel east of Jabalya in the northern Gaza strip on March 30, 2018. (AFP/Mohammed Abed)

Abbas praised the “brothers in Hamas” for belatedly adopting what he called peaceful resistance. “Thank God, they (Hamas) finally agreed and this is effective,” he said, while urging organizers to keep their children from protests along the border between Israel and Gaza, warning of a “handicapped” generation.

“Keep the young men from the border, move the children away, we do not want to become handicapped people,” he said.

Hamas leaders have declared that the protests aim to erase the border and liberate Palestine, and some have suggested there would be an eventual mass breach of the border.

Despite the rare praise for his rivals, Abbas posed tough conditions for ending the internal rift that broke open in 2007, when Hamas drove Abbas-loyal forces from Gaza a year after winning Palestinian parliament elections. Since the Hamas takeover, Israel and Egypt have enforced a border blockade on Gaza, aimed at stopping the inflow of rockets and weapons.

Masked gunmen from the Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades, a military wing of the Hamas terror group, march with their weapons, during a large-scale drill across the Gaza strip, March 25, 2018. (AP Photo/ Khalil Hamra)

Egyptian mediators have proposed that Abbas assume government responsibilities in Gaza as a way of ending the blockade. Abbas said Monday that he will do so only if Hamas hands over all authority — an unlikely prospect since the terror group refuses to give up control over its weapons.

“Either they give us everything or they take everything,” Abbas said of Hamas.

A new leadership

Later this week, the Palestinian National Council is to elect a new PLO Executive Committee, an 18-member leadership group that has served in recent years to rubberstamp any decisions by Abbas.

The elections, tightly controlled by Abbas, are expected to install a new group of loyalists in the committee.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas (L) gestures during the Palestinian National Council meeting in Ramallah on April 30, 2018. ( AFP PHOTO / ABBAS MOMANI)

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Netanyahu: Allies could have saved 4 million Jews if they’d bombed death camps in 1942

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H/T The Time Of Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is correct in his observations about saving lives if the death camps were bombed.

There is no doubt in my mind that anti Semitism played a role in the decision not to bomb the camps.

‘When our brothers and sisters were being sent to the furnaces… the powers knew and did not act’

In bitter Holocaust Remembrance Day speech citing new UN documents, PM castigates global indifference 75 years ago, says it persists today.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a ceremony held at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum in Jerusalem, on Holocaust Remembrance Day on April 23, 2017. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday launched a blistering assault on Allied policy during World War II, saying world powers’ failure to bomb the Nazi concentration camps from 1942 cost the lives of four million Jews and millions of others.

Citing recently released UN documents that show the Allies were aware of the scale of the Holocaust in 1942, some two years earlier than previously assumed, Netanyahu said in a speech marking Holocaust Remembrance Day that this new research assumed “a terrible significance.”

“If the powers in 1942 had acted against the death camps — and all that was needed was repeated bombing of the camps — had they acted then, they could have saved 4 million Jews and millions of other people,” he said at the official state ceremony marking the start of the memorial day.“The powers knew, and they did not act,” he told the audience at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem.

“When terrible crimes were being committed against the Jews, when our brothers and sisters were being sent to the furnaces,” he went on, “the powers knew and did not act.”

In a bleak and bitter address, the Israeli prime minister said that the Holocaust was enabled by three factors: the vast hatred of the Jews, global indifference to the horrors, and “the terrible weakness of our people in the Diaspora.”

Anti-Semitism had not disappeared, and “it would be naive to think” that it would do so in the foreseeable future, he said. It was being exacerbated by “hatred from the East,” led by Iran and the Islamic State, he added.

The speech marked a sharp contrast from that of President Reuven Rivlin, who spoke just before Netanyahu, and cautioned against seeing anti-Semitism where it does not exist.

Global indifference persisted, too, Netanyahu said, as evidenced by the horrors in Biafra, Cambodia, Rwanda, Sudan and Syria. One “ray of light,” he noted, was US President Donald Trump’s determined response to Syrian President Bashar Assad’s gassing of his own people.

What had changed, though, was that the Jewish nation now has a strong Israel to protect it. “The weak do not have much chance of survival,” he said. “The strong survive; the weak are wiped out…our people learned this in the Holocaust.”

The lesson for Israel, he said, “is that we have to be able to defend ourselves, by ourselves, against any threat, against any enemy.”

He warned that “those who seek to kill us put themselves in the line of fire.”

That stance, he said, was “not a provocation or an exaggeration; it’s the only way to truly ensure our future.”

And that imperative, Netanyahu stressed, “is the prime obligation… of all Israeli prime ministers.”

 

In blow to Obama, Saudi king and other leaders to skip Gulf summit

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This is from The Time of Israel.

The Saudis and everyone else know Obamas deal with Iran is a fatal mistake for many people.

 

Only two heads of state will attend high-level meeting meant to assuage Arab fears over nuclear deal with Iran

Newly crowned Saudi King Salman has refused an invitation to attend a landmark summit hosted by President Barack Obama, amid angst over US-Iran nuclear negotiations.

Obama had invited six Gulf kings, emirs and sultans to the presidential retreat at Camp David, seeking to shore up wavering trust while Washington negotiates with regional power Tehran.
Obama’s plans now lie in tatters, with only two heads of state slated to attend the Thursday meeting.

Saudi Arabia’s embassy in Washington said Sunday that newly-named Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef would instead lead the Saudi delegation to the meeting.

The king’s youthful son, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman — who is tipped as a possible future successor and who has driven recent military operations in Yemen — will also attend.

Even before becoming king, Salman was rumored to be suffering from dementia, and his son and the now crown price have played oversized roles in Saudi foreign policy.

As late as Friday, US officials said they had expected Salman to come to Washington, before learning of the change in plan.

“This is not in response to any substantive issue,” insisted one senior US administration official.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said Salman would miss the meeting “due to the timing of the summit, the scheduled humanitarian ceasefire in Yemen and the opening of the King Salman Center for Humanitarian Aid,” according to the embassy statement.

Obama had planned to meet the king one-on-one a day before the gathering.

Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Issa al-Khalifa will also miss the meeting, officials indicated Sunday, with the crown prince coming instead.

That means Obama will likely meet only the leaders of Kuwait and Qatar, despite the prestigious invitation.

The White House had hoped the meeting would assuage deep unease over Iran talks, which Gulf states see as a Faustian bargain, and Obama’s perceived disengagement from the region.

Gulf officials had been pressing for the United States to supply advanced weapons like F-35 stealth fighters as well as a written security guarantee in the face of a threat from Iran.

“I think we are looking for some form of security guarantee, given the behavior of Iran in the region, given the rise of the extremist threat,” said Yousef al-Otaiba, the United Arab Emirates’ ambassador to the United States.

“In the past, we have survived with a gentleman’s agreement with the United States about security. I think today, we need something in writing. We need something institutionalized.”

“I don’t believe there’s a single country (in the council) that doesn’t think a defense shield for the region is a bad idea,” Otaiba said. “The challenge is how do you turn on a regional defense system when different countries are purchasing different equipment and at different paces? How do you link it? How do you get the radars to talk to each other?”

A high-level Saudi official told The Associated Press in Riyadh that his country wants a defense system and military cooperation similar to what the US affords Israel.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to disclose details of the Saudis’ wish list at the summit, said they also want access to high-tech military equipment, missiles, planes and satellites, as well as more technology and training cooperation with the US.

The Iran nuclear deal — which could be agreed to in June — would curb Tehran’s nuclear program in return for unfreezing sanctions and funds worth more than $100 billion.

Gulf states fear that money could be used to by arms and further support Shiite proxy groups in the region.

A US official said a key part of the meetings would be to support a common Gulf defense infrastructure.

“This focus on mutual security extends to various areas -– counterterrorism, maritime security, cybersecurity and ballistic missile defense,” the official said.

Washington and the Gulf nations are also expected to discuss conflicts across the Middle East including in Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen.

Yemen in chaos
The Obama administration has privately pressed Saudi Arabia to ease an imprecise air campaign on Yemen that appears to have had a limited military impact but caused humanitarian suffering.

More than 1,400 people have been killed since late March in the conflict, according to the United Nations.

Aid agencies have called for an immediate ceasefire in a statement signed by 17 organizations.

Salman said the Saudi-led air war was launched on Yemen to foil a plot by a “sectarian group” to undermine Middle East security.

He said the campaign prevented Yemen from becoming a “theater of terrorism.”

Officials also pointed out that missiles capable of reaching Saudi Arabia fell under the control of Iran-backed Huthi rebels.

After more than six weeks of Saudi-led air strikes, Yemeni rebels said they would respond “positively” to ceasefire efforts and their allies accepted a US-backed truce plan.

Riyadh has offered a five-day humanitarian truce from Tuesday evening. The country said its ceasefire offer is conditional on the rebels reciprocating and not exploiting it for military advantage.

But on Sunday, Saudi artillery responded to rocket fire from Yemen that wounded four women inside the country.

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