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Emet m'Tsiyon

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Shavu`ot Massacre of Jews in Baghdad, 1941-- a French Historian Covers Up for the Arabs

UPDATED [see at bottom]

The Arabs have a very big lobby among politicians, diplomats, businessmen, and --alas-- scholars who seek to explain away their every crime, if they cannot disregard it or twist it around in order to lay the guilt on someone else, particularly the Jews. We showed in a previous post that George Antonius, renowned as the first historian of modern Arab nationalism, explains away the Iraqi Arab crime of massacring the Assyrians [1933] by admitting that the Arabs had done something wrong, but then casting the guilt on the Assyrians themselves. Antonius, by the way, was on the payroll, while writing his famous book, The Arab Awakening, of Charles R Crane, a super-rich American Judeophobe, admirer of Hitler, and associate of the Nazi collaborating Mufti of Jerusalem [appointed by the British], Haj Amin el-Husseini. Of course it was Antonius who had brought them together. Crane was the Crane of the King-Crane Commission.

Majid Khadduri, an Iraqi Arab historian, also softened the picture of the anti-Jewish massacre, the Farhud of 1941, as we have shown in earlier posts. Likewise, the British political agent, Freya Stark, softened it too, although much less than Khadduri did. On the other hand, Bernard Lewis commendably demonstrated the British government complicity in the massacre, implying that Anthony Eden [without naming him] bore major guilt for the event, which could have been easily curtailed by the intervention of British troops who were camped outside the city.

Today's post focusses on a French soi-disant expert on modern Middle Eastern history, a rabid hater of Israel, one Henry Laurens. Not to be outdone by France's British rivals, Laurens too presents a soft-focussed tableau of the Baghdad Farhud:
During that period of interregnum [after the Arab defeat, before British entry into the city], the population of the city [as if everyone] attacked the Jewish neighborhoods. The houses were looted and 179 dead Jews (men, women, and children) were counted (1st-2nd June 1941).
This massacre (farhud) was an unprecedented event in the history of Iraq [as if there had been no preceding slaughter of Armenians and Assyrians!] [Henry Laurens, La Question de la Palestine, v 2, (Paris 2002), Chap XI, v2, p 461]
"Durant cette période d'interrègne [après la défaite des Arabes, avant l'entrée des Britanniques a` Baghdad], la population de la ville [comme si tout le monde] attaque les quartiers juifs. Les maisons sont pillées et 179 morts juifs (hommes, femmes et enfants) seront recensés (1er-2 juin 1941)
"Ce massacre (farhud) est un fait sans précédent dans l'histoire de l'Irak" [comme s'il n'y avait pas de carnage précédent d'Arméniens ou d'Assyriens!] [Henry Laurens, La Question de la Palestine, v 2, (Paris 2002), Chap XI, v2, p 461]
What compounds the problem of Laurens' softening of the massacre is that he lectures at the ultra-prestigious Collège de France in Paris. This is not a degree granting college. It's lectures are open to the public and it claims to present through these lectures "science in the making." It's a pretty sad commentary on "science in the making" if one of the lecturers doesn't know that Armenian and Assyrian massacres took place in Iraq in the twentieth century before the Farhud, not going back to the massacres of dhimmis in the Middle Ages. If someone wants a bright spot, Khadduri covered up the massacre in a worse way. But then Khadduri was an Arab.

Now, to touch a few more bases regarding that period in Iraq, George Antonius, who came to Israel in the early 1920s from Egypt as a British civil servant, was very proud of his British honorary title, the Commander of the British Empire [CBE]. Doesn't sound very anti-imperialist, does it?
Antonius too was in Iraq in that period and defended Rashid Ali al-Kilani to Freya Stark, as she reports [Dust in the Lion's Paw; pp 79-80].

Updating: Note that Laurens does not mention the British role in the Farhud. That indeed is very curious since the French are often quite delighted to find signs of British wrongdoing. As to the number that he gives, only 179 victims instead of the 600 cited by Elie Kedourie, we would expect an Arab apologist to minimize the number of Jewish victims. However, there is a Jewish writer on the events, Hayyim Cohen, who also --I believe-- gave the number 179 or 180. What is wrong on Laurens' part is that he does not mention the other number, 600, as if it did not exist. That's not comprehensive scholarship.
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Coming: the Mufti's role in the Baghdad massacre, ancient Hebrew-Aramaic inscriptions from Zo`ar, etc.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

British Governmental Guidance of British Media --BBC-- during the Holocaust

British foreign policy has been anti-Israel for many years. The bias of the British press and electronic media towards Israel, to a great extent guided by officials and the use of psychological warfare techniques, has successfully produced a large segment of British public opinion that can rightfully be called "Nazi." This fanatic prejudice is very potent among some of the intelligentsia, such as the poet Tom Paulin, who writes regularly for the Guardian. Paulin told an Egyptian newspaper that "Brooklyn Jews" living on the "West Bank" ought to be shot. And Paulin wrote a poem about the conflict of Arabs and Jews that is reminiscent of the Nazi Horst Wessel Lied. The intense Judeophobic, Israelophobic bias of the BBC is widely recognized. The BBC has of course done a great deal to produce the current Nazi mood so prevalent nowadays in Britain.

But there are flowers even in a desert. Barbara Rogers is a British woman historian, who deserves credit for researching British information policy during World War 2, and as to when the UK government learned about the function of Auschwitz. This is important for several reasons. One is that if the government found out only at a late date, then this could be used as an excuse for the refusal or failure of Britain and other allies to do anything to stop the mass murder process. It is also important for establishing that the BBC's Goebbels-like role now in working to create an anti-Israel public opinion, both in Britain and throughout the world, is not the honest effort of an independent news service, but the work of a UK government agency.

Barbara Rogers reports [in History Today, October 1999] that "the Ministry of Information's Planning Committee" ruled "on July 25th, 1941, that propaganda should not deal with Jews." That means that the British media were not supposed to report Jewish suffering as such, although Jewish suffering and the massacre of Jews could be reported as pertaining to generalized "persons," "civilians," "Poles," "Russians," etc. Remarkably, the American Communist Party followed a similar policy. Look at the war movie scripts of John Howard Lawson, an American Communist film writer. Look at books by Michael Sayers and Albert E Kahn, such as Plot against the Peace (New York 1945) [which has valuable information in it nonetheless]. A year later, in June 1942, Brendan Bracken, Minister of Information, issued a booklet Bestiality Unknown in any Previous Record of History. This contained information describing Auschwitz in general terms. On 1 July 1942, the Polish Fortnightly Review reported some of the same information, including mention of poison gas and crematoria. But there was no mention of Jews, on account of the abovementioned ruling. Nevertheless, at a press conference on 15 July 1942, Bracken announced that 700,000 Jews had already been murdered in Poland and that this was the "beginning of wholesale extermination of the Jews." [The Polish Fortnightly Review was published by the Ministry of Information of the Polish Government-in-exile, which was in fact supervised by the British minister, Bracken.]

However, Rogers reports:
It is notable that no editions of Polish Fortnightly Review mention Auschwitz-Birkenau after August 1942 until May 1st 1945, as the war ended, when a whole edition was devoted to reporting eyewitness accounts of Polish women's experiences in Birkenau. . . This begs the question of why news should have ceased when atrocities against Jews peaked.

She also refers to a memorandum of 8 December 1942 by Rabbi Perlzweig [Maurice Perlzweig?] and Jewish organizations sent to President Franklin Roosevelt and the UK Foreign Office,
that almost two million Jews of Nazi Europe had been exterminated through mass murder, starvation, deportation, slave labor and epidemics in ghettos, penal labour colonies and slave reservations created for their destruction. The report stated that 'five million Jews inside Nazi-occupied territory are threatened with total extermination under the terms of an official order by Hitler calling for the complete annihilation of the Jews of Europe' . . . 'resettlement in the East' was a euphemism for mass murder. . .
Barbara Rogers then asks:
Why then was information on Auschwitz-Birkenau suppressed during the war? . . . The plight of the Jews was considered low priority and subordinate to news concerning the war effort. . . Information was also withheld to . . . avert criticism of the government's inaction and forestall pressure to permit refugees access to Palestine. . . That was then, but why is information on Intelligence files concerning the Holocaust still embargoed for several years to come?
It is hard to believe that Britain's superb intelligence resources did not keep the London government informed of the massacres of Jews almost from the very beginning. Maybe that's why the Intelligence files are still sealed.

It is interesting that Rogers' research confirms in general what Shmul Zigelboym wrote in letters published in the Zigelboym Bukh, and quoted here in previous posts. It is also interesting that, according to Rogers, the British government wanted to "forestall pressure to permit refugees access to Palestine." That is, the Land of Israel, the internationally designated Jewish National Home, could not be home for the Jews when they most needed a home. This implies that Jews were allowed to die --allowed to be murdered-- for the sake of the Arabs.

For those who still cherish the image of the BBC as a "news service," bear in mind that when the British government restricted information about the Holocaust, that the BBC was an obedient government tool, as both Barbara Rogers and Shmul Zigelboym make clear. Hence, when the BBC belittles or disregards Jewish suffering at the hands of Arab terrorists, or magnifies Arab suffering, or invents Arab suffering, or mourns Arafat's death, or pretends that there is a historical people called "palestinians," then the sound and film equipment are the equipment of the BBC but the voice is the voice of the Foreign Office.

Barbara Rogers, "Auschwitz and the British," History Today, October 1999
_________. "British Intelligence and the Holocaust: Auschwitz and the Allies Re-examined," The Journal of Holocaust Education, vol. 8, no. 1 (Summer 1999), pp 89-106.

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Coming: More on Britain and the Holocaust, George Antonius as more British than Arab, ancient Jewish monuments in Zo`ar [Tso`ar], now in the kingdom of Jordan, etc.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Britain, A Silent Partner in the Holocaust -- More Obviously Involved in Baghdad

Britain was a silent partner in the Holocaust. Some may be shocked but this conclusion is supported by a wealth of documentation and well known facts. Such events as Britain's role in the Munich Pact [1938] are well known. Other facts are known to few. Some supports for this statement are directly documented. Others are circumstantial. The Second World War started as a result of Munich, through the surrender to Hitler of Czechoslovak defenses in the "Sudetenland." Without the War, could there have been a Holocaust?

Furthermore, the same British decision-makers who made the War possible also closed off the Land of Israel, the internationally designated Jewish National Home ["Palestine Mandate"], to Jewish immigration by means of the 1939 Palestine White Paper. There were many other British acts flowing from the White Paper policy which it would be tedious to recount at this time. The White Paper clearly demonstrates the solid link between the falsely named "appeasement policy" of Neville Chamberlain and the British policy towards Jews and Zionism, since the Chamberlain government made both decisions. Further, when Churchill had taken over as prime minister, this link continued. Anthony Eden, the foreign secretary, and other policy makers, directed the BBC to avoid reporting the Holocaust. Meanwhile, the same Eden favored the Arabs, encouraging "Arab Unity" through establishment of the Arab League, and even allowing [or encouraging] Arabs to massacre Jews in Baghdad. Eden's policy is specifically mentioned by a British military officer as preventing British troops from stopping the Baghdad massacre [the Farhud].

The pro-German Iraqi government was put down by a British invasion, and Egypt quieted by a show of force; then on May 29, 1941, Eden made a conciliatory speech in London in which he hinted that Britain would pay more attention to Arab desires. Privately Arab leaders were given hope for the future . . . [William R Polk, "The Arabs and Palestine," in W R Polk, D M Stamler, E Asfour, Backdrop to Tragedy: The Struggle for Palestine (Boston: Beacon Press 1957), p 282]
Polk is not entirely correct here. There was no "British invasion" to put down the Rashid Ali al-Kaylani government. Actually British troops were already in the country by treaty with Iraq. They brought in to help them Jewish underground fighters from Israel, such as David Raziel, and Arab auxiliaries from Transjordan, then ruled by Abdullah I, the Hashemite relative of the Hashemites ruling in Iraq, both sets of Hashemites placed in ruling position by the British. Assyrian troops also helped the British war effort. However, Polk points out the significance of Eden's speech on 29 May, quoted in a previous post, which actually initiated formation of the Arab League [on formation of this embodiment of pan-Arab nationalism, also see Polk, pp 282-283].

Three days after Eden's speech,
The first Axis-style attack on a Jewish community in an Arab land occurred in Baghdad on June 1 and 2, 1941, in the brief interregnum between collapse of the pro-German Rashid `Ali regime and the arrival of the British troops. On this occasion, it was the mob, not the authorities, that took action. According to official sources, 600 Jews were killed ["killed" or murdered?--The number 600 by the way, is used by Elie Kedourie] and 240 injured, 586 business premises sacked, and 911 houses destroyed. Unofficial estimates were much higher. The massacre was carried out by troops, police, and other elements incited by the fallen Rashid `Ali regime, and seeking vengeance for its defeat. For two days the massacre continued unopposed, while the British army, which by this time had the city at its mercy, took no action but waited in the outskirts. Somerset de Chair, who was serving with the British forces as an intelligence officer, explains what happened [up till here, Bernard Lewis]:
Reading came to me. "Why do our troops not go into Baghdad?" he asked. "Already they may be looting. I know there will be many people killed if our troops do not enter."
This was my own view and the ways of the Foreign Office were beyond my comprehension. From the hour of the Cease Fire their word had prevailed. Having fought their way, step by step, to the threshold of the city, we must now cool our heels outside. It would apparently be lowering to the dignity of our ally, the Regent [King Faisal II the Hashemite, was a child], if he were seen to be supported on arrival by British bayonets. [Somerset de Chair, The Golden Carpet (London 1943), p 118; in New York ed., p 127]
The British ambassador to Iraq, Sir Kinahan Cornwallis, had already stated his view that British forces should not occupy Baghdad "except temporarily to secure favorable government or at request [of] Iraqi government." The Jews of Baghdad had learned in these two terrible days that they were completely at the mercy of their neighbors and masters. They had also learned that Western governments, solicitous for good relations with these same masters, would do little or nothing to help them. Needless to say the lesson was not lost on the masters themselves. [Bernard Lewis, Semites and Anti-Semites (New York: Norton 1986), pp 158-159]
Here Bernard Lewis quotes the words of De Chair that Eden's Foreign Office allowed the Arab mob of Baghdad to massacre and despoil the Jews of Baghdad. Quincy Wright, considered a leading American expert on international relations in the mid-twentieth century, wrote that:
Their [the Arabs'] attitude may have an important influence on the war, and British policy has sought to appease them. Britain has recognized the independence of Syria and the Lebanon [easy enough to do since these countries had been under French mandate], has offered its support for a federation of the North Arab states [eventuating in the Arab League], and has implemented its policy announced in 1939 of ending political Zionism in Palestine [the White Paper policy, found illegal by the League of Nations Permanent Mandates Commission]. [Quincy Wright, "The Future of the Near East," in P W Ireland, ed., The Near East: Problems and Prospects (Chicago: Univ of Chicago Press 1942), p 190]
Here Wright clearly states that the British policy was to eliminate political Zionism. This is the same British government that refused to act to stop the Holocaust. Hence, it was the same decision-makers who decided and implemented both policies as discussed and described in previous posts. The school of historical falsifiers that has arisen to attack and undermine Israel since 1948, often officially and unofficially inspired by British and American Establishment elements, ought to consider the words of Wright. He clearly refutes the claim nowadays made by so-called "leftist" scribblers, including such as Chomsky, Christopher Hitchens, the late Edward Said, and a host of other liars of the pen, that Britain helped to establish the State of Israel. More ought to be said on this matter.

For accounts of the Farhud by Iraqi Jews, see works by Hayyim Cohen, Dr Heskel Haddad, Elie Kedourie, and the Hebrew-language novel, Sufah beyn haD'qalim by Sami Mikha'el, etc.
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Coming: More on Britain, the BBC, and the Holocaust, Jews in 19th century Jerusalem, etc.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

British Troops Told to Stand Aside as Arab Nazi Sympathizers Massacre Jews in Bagdad, 1941, on Shavu`ot שבועות

In the spring of 1941, the Iraqi government led by Rashid Ali al-Gaylani, started a war against British bases in the country, which were there by treaty between the two governments. This was preceded by a several years of Nazi and pro-Nazi propaganda and agitation in Iraq, much of it conducted by Haj Amin el-Husseini [al-Husayni], the Mufti of Jerusalem, appointed by the British in 1921. Husseini left Israel for Lebanon to avoid arrest for terrorism-related activities in 1938. He was well-treated in Lebanon by the French, but later left for Iraq where he conducted pro-Nazi propaganda, in cooperation with German diplomats in Iraq, particularly Fritz Grobba.

The Iraqi government received weapons aid from the Germans and Vichy French [Khadduri, pp 194-200], but the British won the war, with the help of Transjordanian forces and Jewish forces from Israel, including David Raziel, founder of the Irgun Ts'va'i Le'umi, killed in the fighting. Then when the British marched on Baghdad, Husseini fled to Teheran and from there to the Nazi-fascist domain in Europe where he settled near Berlin, running a pro-Nazi institute for imams from the occupied countries, making pro-Nazi broadcasts to the Arab world that, among other things, called for killing Jews "Wherever you find them." He also found time to recruit Bosnian Muslims for an SS division, the Handschar.

As the British troops camped outside Baghdad, a pogrom began against Jews in the city on the Shavu`ot holiday. An estimated 600 Jews were murdered in the pogrom [according to Elie Kedourie]. Jewish homes were looted by Muslim thugs. The British troops did not intervene.
This is Majid Khadduri's very brief account of the pogrom:
. . . those extreme elements who regretted the collapse of the Rashid Ali regime gave free vent to their feelings by making the Jewish community in Baghdad the scapegoat for their failure, and pillaged shops on 2 June. The Committee of Internal Security was unfortunately unware of this secret move and made no preparations after the armistice to meet such a possible outburst. The Regent [pro-British], to stop disorder, immediately called upon Jamil al-Midfa'i. . . to form a new Government. Midfa'i appealed to the patriotism of the people, and . . . was able to appease the country and restore order. [Majid Khadduri, Independent Iraq (London: Oxford Univ. Press 1951), pp 203-204]
Khadduri mentions the attacks on the Jews only once directly and once indirectly by quoting a speech that Midfa'i made which refers to the attacks on the Jews only by implication. Neither Khadduri nor the speech by Midfa'i mention the murders of Jews. Nor does Khadduri mention the participation by police and troops in the pogrom. Khadduri held respected university positions in the United States. His omission of Jews being killed and the participation by the forces of order, shows the respect for truth of Arab historiography.

Khadduri glided over the murder of 600 Jews [another authority claims it was only 180 Jews murdered] without a mention, although one may infer from reading between the lines that some Jews were murdered. Khadduri was franker when talking about the Assyrian massacre.
He does not deal at all with the fact that the British stayed camped outside the city while the massacre was going on for two days. Khadduri also would have us believe that Midfa'i's appeal stopped the pogrom, rather than the eventual intervention by the British after several days of massacre.

Here are observations by a British political agent in Iraq, Freya Stark, about that period. First she expresses her contempt for her Jewish servants:
Lengthy argument with my four Jewish sweepers who, trampled on by all, cling to Religion which forbids them to eat animal fats. They were convinced that ghee is mutton. With difficulty I get them to accept 'Spry' out a tin instead, staking my soul that it is only coconut.
Here she gets to the days after the fall of the Rashid Ali al-Gaylani government and the pogrom against the Jews, often called the Farhud:
2 June 1941. . . we [= British in the city] kept well in the background. . . and now we have a night of snapping rifles, police posts doubled, Jews murdered (reports vary between a dozen and five hundred, and Abdullah Ezra [a Jew] says he was 'wading in blood' up Ghazi Street). The shooting is getting momentarily stronger. . . [according to "Pat"] there is looting all down Rashid Street, chiefly by army and police taking a rake-off. [Freya Stark, Dust in the Lion's Paw (New York: Harcourt Brace & World 1962), pp 114-115]
8 p.m. The riot has died down. Curfew at five and everyone showing is shot. I brought Hussain, the policeman, in to tea and he said they had been told to fire real stuff and killed sixty or seventy in the afternoon. New Street from the air looks as if strewn with confetti, the loot lying out in the street. Number of killed will never be know: a family of three came in today - had seen two dead Jews in the street and their own house gutted. Reports say the police were helping to loot yesterday. [p 115]
3 June 1941. . . Pat came back with grave accusations of police helping the looters. [p 116]
A pathetic visit from a Jew pedlar [How respectful!!] with a pack of silks to sell for other merchants; all his house and shop looted in May, so he begins the world again - the indomitable, impressive side of the Jew [p 127]
This massacre, the Farhud, took place on Shavu`ot 65 years ago, in 1941, on June 1 and 2. British troops were not permitted to intervene to stop the pogrom. We will have more to say about this event in soon upcoming posts.
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Coming: more on the Farhud, more on BBC and British collaboration in the Holocaust [including the Farhud], more on Jews in Jerusalem and Hebron in the 19th century, etc.

Friday, May 19, 2006

The Father of Arab Nationalist Fake History Writes about the Assyrian Massacre

George Antonius is considered the father of Arab nationalist historiography. His propagandistic tract, The Arab Awakening, the writing of which was funded by American super-rich Judeophobe, Charles Crane, is still considered an authority on the subject by the sentimental pro-Arabists, captivated by the Arab mystique.

Here is what he wrote about the Assyrian massacre:
Nothing can excuse the acts of savagery with which the Assyrians were visited after their armed insurgence in the summer of 1933, and the massacre which took place is a shameful blot on the pages of Arab history. This does not alter the fact that the Government of Iraq had previously done everything in their power to meet all the reasonable needs of the Assyrians, and that the offers which they had made were not only fair but generous. The failure to come to terms was due primarily to Assyrian intransigence. . . [George Antonius, The Arab Awakening (London 1938), p 367]

Antonius is trying both to seem humane and decent, as well to support the Iraqi Muslim government. An exercise in doubletalk. How is that "Assyrian intransigence"! Almost sounds like they were Jews!
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Coming: The Baghdad pogrom against Jews in 1941; the British, the BBC and the Holocaust, etc.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Before the Iraqi Massacre of Jews, the Assyrians

Everyday's news tells of new atrocities in Iraq, mostly perpetrated by Arab Muslims against fellow Arab Muslims. So we know that Iraq is a bloodthirsty land, where it is difficult to find any connection to Israel for the violence, despite the usual mendacious insinuations that we've heard for years in the media habitually blaming Israel for everything untoward and unseemly in the Middle East. During World War 2, there was a major pogrom or massacre of Jews, in this season of the year, on the Shavu`ot holiday [1941], seven years before the State of Israel was reestablished. However, before the massacre of Jews, there was a massacre of the Assyrian minority, descendants of the ancient inhabitants of Iraq, who belong to the Nestorian sect of Christianity.

The Iraqi kingdom was granted independence by Britain, the mandatory power, in 1932, under the Hashemite prince, Faisal, the erstwhile king of Syria deposed in 1920 by the French. Assyrians lived in various parts of northern Iraq and in Baghdad, many as refugees from eastern Anatolia, Turkey of today, from where they had escaped while the Armenians were being massacred. The Arab nationalist historian, Majid Khadduri, who held prestigious university posts in the United States, gave his opinion of the "Assyrian affair." But first, he tells of how King Faisal was welcomed in London:
On 20 June [1933] King Faysal. . . arrived in London, and was received with full and impressive ceremonial. King George [V] welcomed him. . . As the two kings passed through the streets. . . they were cheered by the crowds that had assembled along the route to Buckingham Palace. . . In the evening King George and the Queen gave a state banquet at Buckingham Palace in King Faysal's honour. After the banquet the King proposed the health of his guest and said:
"It is with much pleasure, Your Majesty, that I bid you welcome to my capital, and assure you how delighted I am to have this opportunity of renewing our pleasant acquaintance of many years standing. . . We welcome Your Majesty. . . as an old ally and friend. . . I have watched the brilliant advance made by Iraq under Your Majesty's enlightened rule. . ." [M Khadduri, Independent Iraq (1st ed.; London: Oxford Univ Press 1951), p 41]

While Faisal was enjoying British flattery about his "enlightened rule," back in Iraq Assyrians were being massacred. The government of that time, called the Ikha,
were able to arouse, and then to incite, the indignation of the entire nation against the Assyrians and the British. . . While the Ikha Government may not have been directly responsible for the massaacre of Assyrians, which was mainly the work of General Bakr Sidqi (officer commanding the Iraqi forces in the north), Hikmat Sulayman, Minister of the Interior, declared to the writer [Khadduri] that he had approved the general line of policy which General Bakr Sidqi adopted.[p44]
King Faysal. . . returned to Baghdad [from London] on 2 August [1933], but found the situation completely beyond his control. . . Demonstrations, spontaneous or inspired, were taking place almost daily demanding the elimination of the entire Assyrian community. In one of the demonstrations outside the Royal Diwan, Amir Ghazi [son of Faisal] (who was in sympathy with the Ikha Government) and the Ikha leaders were loudly cheered by the excited crowds. . .[p 44]
So the mob was "demanding the elimination of the entire Assyrian community." Farther on in his book, Khadduri says:
The Iraqi army stood up to the expectations of the country when in August 1933, only a year after the attainment of independence, it dealt with the Assyrian affair so promptly and efficiently that, it was then contended, it had saved the integrity of Iraq. Bakr Sidqi, commander of the forces which put down that uprising, suddenly emerged as an unrivalled national hero. . .[p 79]
So the general who massacred the Assyrians, who were allegedly engaged in an "uprising," was "an unrivalled national hero."
. . . it was indeed owing to his daring handling of the uprising that it was so ruthlessly crushed. . . On his return to Baghdad he was applauded enthusiastically while he motored through the main street, seated on the right side of Prime Minister Rashid Ali al-Gaylani. . . [pp 80-81]
Bakr gave
a public speech. . . to the people of Mosul at a reception for the returning army after the crushing of the Assyrian uprising. . .
Khadduri tells about Ghazi son of Faisal:
The death of King Ghazi was regarded as a national calamity, since he was regarded as a popular hero by the Arab nationalists and the rank and file of the people. [in footnote] During the Assyrian affair. . . Amir Ghazi, then Crown Prince and acting head of State in the absence of his father, supported the Rashid Ali Government's stand in its policy towards the Assyrians, which made him for the first time popular in the eyes of the people. [p 138 & fn]
In other words, the "people" was happy that the Assyrians were crushed.

Just incidentally, there is an Assyrian "narrative" too of what happened to them in 1933 in Iraq. Here are nine pieces.
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Coming: more on Britain, the BBC and the Holocaust; the branch office of the Holocaust in Baghdad enjoys British toleration; more on Jews in Jerusalem in the 19th century, etc.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

More on the BBC and the Holocaust

We have already considered the BBC's reluctance to report the ongoing Holocaust in 1942 in the same period of time as the BBC's masters at the British Foreign Office were very concerned to have the Arab states work for Arab unity. That is, it was Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, who pushed the Arabs to set up the Arab League. The Iraqi Nuri al-Sa`id who presented his plan for the Arab League to the British was known as a British loyalist among the Arab politicians.

In the same general period, the BBC was reluctant to report the Holocaust, and only did so very sparingly, see here, here, here, and here. Nor did the British --or other major Allied powers-- help the Jews subject to the Nazi extermination program in any practical or concrete way.

Zigelboym wrote in his letter of 17 December 1942 to his Bund colleague in New York:

The British expert on Poland showed me his expert opinion which he had submitted to Eden [Anthony Eden], in which he explained the killing of all Warsaw Jews as officially proven, the extermination of [the Jews in] all other cities [in Poland] -- as apparently true, but not officially proven. The issue of a declaration by the governments [in exile in London] had budged from its place.

A week after the negative directive to the British radio [BBC], an opposite directive came. And it was not a secret one, as my friend gave it to me to read. Its content was about like this: Up till today Hitler has successfully used antisemitism for his purposes. Now, the day has come when we can use his antisemitism against him. Therefore, we must widely spread news of the anti-Jewish massacres in Poland. [Zigelboym Bukh, p 359]
Then, the director of the BBC invited me to a new conference. He spoke with me about which passages in our report (from the underground Bund in Poland), as well as in the Polish government reports, that we should give maximal attention to on the radio. He proposed to me that I give an English speech of six minutes --as the direct representative of those being slaughtered. This was on the 11th of December. I gave the talk on the 13th of December (Sunday) at 10 in the morning. It made, as my English acquaintances told me, a strong impression. Excerpts from it were repeated throughout the day on all broadcasts. [pp 359-360]
Speaking to the Board of Deputies of British Jews, Zigelboym said, rejecting proposals for a day of fasting and a week of mourning:
It is your duty to do something that should really shake the world, the English government, and force it to undertake real measures to save the Jews, something that the Warsaw Jews would do if the situation were reversed [i.e., persecution of Jews in the UK]. 50,000 London Jews should make a demonstration, they should block Downing Street; they should shout to Heaven in such a way that it will shake the world and the tranquillity of the politicians, who potentially can do something. It is the last minute. The Jewish people is being slaughtered. [p 360]
I accepted the invitation of the Propaganda Department of the Labour Party to a number of mass meetings of the English working class throughout the country on the theme of the massacres of Jews. I have already made many appearances before English trade unions and local organizations giving lectures. In the first days of January there are two such meetings --one in a London suburb, the second -- in the coal region before coal-miners. At the same time, I have been informed that the Polish Pen Club is making an effort for a special meeting of the English and other Pen Clubs, which are here, at which I am to appear. [Zigelboym Bukh, Letter to the New York Bund delegate of 17 December 1942; pp360-361]
Despite all this activity, all these appearances, Zigelboym wrote on January 1, 1943:
Our actions and protests have no practical value. I shudder when it becomes clear to me that in July, when I here and you there [in New York] made a great noise around the first report of slaughters in eastern Poland, which had taken place in the Spring, and we thought that we were doing our duty and our best to save the Jews from further massacres. . . [yet] at the same time the great massacres in Warsaw. . . [were going on as we protested the previous massacres]. . . We are not capable, I am not capable of doing anything to save even one person, one Jewish child, from a horrendous death. . . [Zigelboym Bukh, Letter to Bund delegate in New York of 1 January 1943; pp361-362]
Later that year, as the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was proceeding without Allied help, except from a few Poles like Henryk Iwanski, Zigelboym wrote:
On May 1, I spoke on the radio [BBC] for home [for Poland]. . . [Letter of 3 May 1943; p 363]
That is, the BBC allowed him to speak on a broadcast to Poland in Polish [as far as I know, the BBC did not have Yiddish-language broadcasts, nor did it want them], not to a British audience, whereas only British public opinion could have changed British policy.

Neither the British government nor any other major Allied power did anything concrete to oppose, impede, stop, hinder, or hamper the Holocaust in Poland. Zigelboym was allowed to make appearances on the BBC starting in December 1942, but it appears that all his appearances were only granted to him by the BBC for the sake of appearances. That is, so that the BBC would be seen to be doing its duty to humanity, although nothing concrete or meaningful was being done by the British government, of which the BBC was --and is-- an agency. In 1942-1943, the British government must have felt that Zigelboym had to be placated too, since he was a person of some standing and consequence, as an official of the Polish Government-in-exile and a trade union leader with ties to British trade unions as well. So they made a few gestures towards him, but nothing concrete was done.

Today, Arab collaboration in the Holocaust --most strikingly throughHaj Amin el-Husseini, the British-appointed Mufti of Jerusalem-- is forgotten. Meanwhile, the UK government fawns over the self-avowed genocidist Ahmadinejad, an Iranian Islamic supremacist. He declares his desire to destroy Israel, the Jews who survived the Holocaust. The UK is not alone today. Most European Union states are eager to fawn and grovel over the IslamoNazis. As an example, the UK and the rest of the EU know that mass murder is being perpetrated by Arabs/Muslims in Sudan, yet nothing is done to stop it. Nor would any serious person expect the UN to do anything. Mass murder perpetrated by the Islamic/Arab nationalist regimes in the Sudan has been going on since Sudan became independent on 1 January 1956. Nothing concrete was ever done to stop it. Mass murder has been and is the order of the day. And the university teachers' union in Britain calls for a boycott of Israel [announced 9 May]. So the Nazis run the academy. Just as Hitler had his professors, so too Abu Mazen and Ahmadinejad and Bashar Assad and Bin Laden have their professors, eager to grovel and foam at the mouth on cue like Pavlov's dog, dogs who can be siccked onto the nation of Israel, giving vent to their ignorant hatred [What else would one expect from professors?]. Further pro-Nazi influence in the British universities is provided by one Chris Patten, formerly an EU foreign policy official, now one of the top guns at Cambridge or Oxford, the jewels in the crown of British scholarship. But no action is taken by the British academics on behalf of the those suffering in Sudan. Not even a call for a boycott.

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Coming soon: massacre of Assyrians in Iraq, pogrom against Jews in Bagdad [with British collaboration], etc.

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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

The Turk Evliya Chelebi Describes Ancient Jewish Remains in the Safed Area

Safed is in an area of many shrines, especially tombs of ancient Jewish and Israelite personalities, which Chelebi described in his account of his journey [1648-1650].
For example:
It was in this cave that Ya`qub [Jacob] wept for 40 years over the loss of Yusuf [Joseph] . . .
Yet the cave under the citadel [of Safed] is called the Grotto of Qetur`. . . The entrance to the cave is closed. Yet they [the buried] are visited. Their visitors are mostly Jews, who come thither very often. They do this because it is written in their chronicles. . . [p26]
The Children of Israel fled from the plague and hid themselves in those caves (near Safed). [p28]
He also mentions Nablus, built by the Flavian emperors [72 CE], Titus and Vespasian, after defeating the Jews in the first revolt. They built it near the ruins of ancient Sh'khem and called the new city Nea Polis [new city in Greek], which the Arabs pronounced Nablus. Here Chelebi writes of Nablus:
the town is Samaritan. . . the Children of Israel built it [p47]
Samaritans still live in Nablus, although it is not likely that they were the majority in Chelebi's time. They consider themselves descendants of Israel, although not Jews. However, under Muslim rule, the Samaritans were under the authority of the Jewish community leaders.
Near Nablus is:
"the shrine of Esau, son of Isaac. . . It is no marvel that the Jews visit this shrine, because it is mentioned in their Chronicles. They also visit that one of the children of Isaac. [p51]
The tomb of Samuel the Prophet believed to be on the highest mountain near Jerusalem, at a village now called Nebi Samwil:
Shimwel contains the shrine of Shimwel. . . It is a place for pilgrimage for all and sundry"[p54 and note]
Mujir al-Din, a Muslim judge in Jerusalem of the 15th century, mentions Shimwel and says that the Jews call it Ramah. The waqfs of the village are controlled by the Alami family of Jerusalem. The Alami family are still a notable family among the Arabs in the Jerusalem area. This tells us that back in the 17th century they already controlled estates and the income from estates through their control of the Muslim waqf [plural-awqaf], the body that controls property supposedly belonging to the Muslims collectively and inalienable. In fact, the waqf feeds most those who control it.

Jerusalem drew Muslims from various places. Living on the Temple Mount were:
dervishes from India [Hind], Sind, Balkh, Persia, and Kurds, Tatars, Moghuls and Turks [p89]
He describes the Valley of Ben-Hinnom in Jerusalem:
The Valley of Hell [Gai Ben-Hinnom, גיא בן חינום , in Arabic Jahanammu] . . . contains all the tombs of the Jews. . . those irreligious people [p92]
[Evliya Celebi (Tshelebi), Travels in Palestine (Jerusalem: Ariel 1980)]
Actually, the Qidron Valley below the Mount of Olives has many many old Jewish graves, especially on the eastern slope, and a few notable ancient Jewish tombs in the valley, such as the Tombs of the B'ney Hezir, the so-called Yad Absalom, etc. The Qidron Valley joins the Valley of Hinnom [or of Ben Hinnom] near the Shilo'ah [Silwan] pool.

Here an educated Muslim traces the history of the Land of Israel back to Israel, the Jews. He does not subscribe to the big lie of a "Palestinian people" so beloved of 21st century Nazi-sympathizers and Judeophobes.
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Coming: more on BBC and Holocaust, the Assyrians in Iraq, etc.