Another Nakba Day has come and gone with its not-unexpected bloody consequences. The Nakba must be the single most successful revanchist propaganda ploy ever – one which dementedly ultra-tolerant Israel has allowed to gain momentum and become a fixed feature of our surreal existence.
Never has a revanchist cause been marketed as effectively. It wasn’t so even in the aftermath of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71 when France lost Alsace-Lorraine and seethed with patriotic retributionist ardor to reverse its wartime losses. This furious groundswell was then dubbed revanchism (from revanche, French for revenge).
Revanchism is inextricably tied to irredentism – the often unsavory nationalist agitation whereby one country claims stretches of another’s territory as property belonging to it.
World War II resulted from precisely such a lethal combination of revanchism and irredentism. Hitler strove to avenge Germany’s World War I defeat and (so he claimed initially) take control of territories populated by German-speakers. He insisted that Czechoslovakia’s Sudetenland was Germania Irredenta (unredeemed Germany) – his “last demand in Europe.”
That border region’s German inhabitants, Hitler persuaded a world all-too-eager to be duped, deserve self-determination. Germans cannot live as a minority anywhere. (Just as Arabs can’t.)
Hitler’s next move was to portray Sudeten Germans as oppressed. He staged a circus of provocation charging the “perfidious Czechs” with terrorizing Sudeten women and children and murdering innocent villagers. Sounds familiar? Just substitute Israelis for Czechs and Palestinians for Sudetens.
Six months after appeasing democracies let Germany have the Sudetenland, Hitler took all of Czechoslovakia. His “last demand” wasn’t final after all. “I saw our enemies in Munich,” he later recalled his 1938 powwow with Neville Chamberlain. “They are little worms.”
Israel’s original sin is refusing to surrender without a shot like Czechoslovakia. Its subsequent most cardinal sin was having dared spoil Arab plans for its annihilation. Because Israel impudently remained alive (and kicking), its survival is denigrated as a Nakba – catastrophe.
The very term “nakba” bristles with revanchism, and nobody knows better than the volatile, incited Arab masses how to collectively fly off the handle in an orchestrated display of premeditated pseudo-righteous indignation.
This is what we face each year – to a lesser or greater extent – on the day they designate to lament the fact that we at all live. Let there be no mistake: The bottom line of their grievance is that not all our forebears perished in the Holocaust, that some had reached this land pre-WWII and that others endured and came here post-WWII.
The very assertion that the Nakba resulted wantonly out of the blue from Israel’s birth in 1948 is in itself a gross distortion. The conflict didn’t begin in 1948 – it reached its culmination then.
The Arabs violently opposed the Jewish community which existed in this country pre-WWII and was ripe for statehood before the Holocaust. The “Great Arab Revolt” of 1936-39 – fomented by the still-revered Haj Amin al-Husseini and financed by Nazi Germany – delayed Jewish independence. The Arabs denied asylum here to desperate Jewish escapees from Hitler’s hell. Thereby they doomed these refugees to death. The blood of these exterminated Jews indelibly stains Arab hands.
But that’s not all. Husseini, in the role of pan-Arab prime minister, spent the war years in Berlin, where he hobnobbed with Hitler, Himmler, Eichmann, et al. He broadcast Nazi propaganda, recruited Muslims to the SS and actively foiled the rescue of any Jews, even children, during the Holocaust.
The Arabs of this country were avidly pro-Nazi, saluted each other with Heil Hitler, flaunted the swastika, hoarded arms, harbored German spies and planned to heartily welcome Rommel’s invading Afrika Korps.
The war that the entire Arab world launched against newborn Israel, three years post-Holocaust, was explicitly geared to complete Hitler’s unfinished mission. Not only was there no attempt to camouflage this genocidal goal, but it was broadcast boastfully for all to hear and be intimidated.
Two weeks pre-attack, on May 1, 1948, Arab League Secretary-General Abdul- Rahman Azzam Pasha declared: “If the Zionists dare establish a state, the massacres we would unleash would dwarf anything which Genghis Khan and Hitler perpetrated.”
Lest any doubt linger, Azzam reiterated his message the day seven Arab armies attacked: “This will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacres and the Crusades.”
But things, alas, didn’t turn out as per Azzam’s bravado. Ever since, consequently, frustrated Arabs fume with ferocious wrath about being unfairly denied their state under the UN partition plan that they deliberately sabotaged.
Murderous Arab rampages already greeted the November 29, 1947 UN General Assembly decision to divide this tiny land into a Palestinian Arab state and a pitifully puny, terrifyingly vulnerable Jewish counterpart (wedged mainly along the coastal highway between Tel Aviv and Netanya).
Jerusalem was consigned to international administration, and the entire unlikely shebang was to form one economic unit in the abiding spirit of brotherly love. The pipe dream’s single outstanding shortcoming was the palpable paucity of brotherly love.
The Arabs set out to thwart the implementation of the UN decision. Now they pose as the hapless victims of the war they instigated. They lost their own war and, ever since, are consumed by the twin rages of irredentism and revanchism.
What they call “occupation” doesn’t only relate to the territories that came under Israeli control in 1967. Occupation also – and principally – refers to the territories that constitute Israel since 1948. In other words, all of Israel is illegitimate. Israel’s very existence is unacceptable. No Jews should be here.
It is somehow unfair that by dint of our ancestors’ good fortune, they escaped the Holocaust – either before or during its perpetration. That is the historical injustice which Husseini’s and Azzam’s spiritual heirs and torchbearers lament under the Nakba moniker.
Like Hitler and his mouthpiece Goebbels, Arabs honed the skill of disguising their aggressive revanchism and irredentism as wretched victimhood. Exceedingly more than in Czechoslovakia’s case, the world is all-too-eager to be duped.
Defeat-spawned Arab revanchism is as unjustified as would have been German revanchism after the Third Reich’s fall. Essentially our War of Independence was an Arab-plotted epilogue to WWII. Hence the Nakba isn’t about the undeserved displacement of innocents, who in all innocence merely yearn for their parents’ and grandparents’ erstwhile homes.
That’s why back in 1949, after the first outcry to turn back the clock’s hands and repatriate hostile Arabs inside minuscule Israel, David Ben-Gurion determined that “just as it is impossible to resurrect 6,000 of our finest sons and daughters who fell in the War of Independence which the Arabs forced upon us; or heal the thousands maimed in that same Arab onslaught; or bring back the millions who could have been saved from the Holocaust had the Arabs not barred their entry to Eretz Yisrael; or breathe life into all those they massacred before 1948 – so it is impossible for those called Arab refugees to demand the right to return as if nothing had happened.”
A great article…!!!
Unfortunately, history can be rewritten. It has been rewritten and it is been redacted by the Arab countries and both their willful (ideology) or unwilling (oil-politics) sympathizers. Read this article by Jackson Diehl of the Washington Post. Its title is a statement unto itself: “Mahmoud Abbas’s formula for war”.
There’s nothing good in the visible horizon.
Oh…my remark was a bit short…so I want to add,that this article is the best written fact loaded opinion piece which I have read in some time and that it clarifies the whole foundation of the conflict, which is essentially an ongoing confrontation aimed at the annihilation of the Jewish state…
Superb observations. You might have also mentioned the Gleiwitz incident, the staged event that finally launched the war on Nazi Germany,
Not only was the aggression faked, but a man was murdered and concentration camp victims were dragged in to pose as the vanquished aggressors. The Gleiwitz incident was a part of Operation Himmler, a series of 21 staged incidents on the Polish border with Germany in order to justify the Nazi invasion.
Sarah, not that it would do any good but perhaps try sending this to that bonehead in the White House that maintains he speaks for the American people. Would that he learn a bit of history before he again opens his mouth. Obviously Obama is not aware that 65% of Americans support the State of Israel. He also is unaware that my country is dominantly Christian, and that most of us regard Jews as the rock of our foundation. I shutter when I realize that many are ignorant of history and the Islamist take advantage of that. We Christians will not allow Obama’s betrayal of Israel. He will be stopped.
I have said it before and it bears repeating UNTIL our DELUDED leaders understand it-it will be their insane ‘tolerance’ for every enemy who amasses against us which will ultimately destroy us.
The enemy barely has to engage us on the battlefield because our crazy leaders make it so easy for them to destroy us through their PR campaigns.
For a people who are touted as being so intelligent, I have NEVER met a leadership so incredibly stupid when it comes to protecting us.Alternatively, they are not really stupid, but plain malevolent. Either way they will help ! our enemies destroy us!
It’s so hard to even know what to say on the heels of Obama’s assertion that Israel should move back to the pre-1967 borders and negotiate land swaps. As Dershowitz pointed out in his article “Obama’s Mistake,” Obama made no demand on the Palestinians to give up their right of return as part of the deal, only the demand that Israel move back behind the lines. Tzipi Livni is reported in the Jpost as saying “Obama’s plan was clearly in Israel’s interests, while the diplomatic stalemate that she believes was brought on by Netanyahu is not.” I’m not versed in all the inticracies of Israeli politics, but it seems to me that even as Netanyahu’s adversary, Livni should realise that broadsiding Netanyahu with a public speech containing such a stance immediately before Netanyahu’s arrival in the States is a bullying tactic done in bad faith.
With all the turmoil in the dictatorships of the Middle East occuring right now, and with the organised provocation of “Nakba Day,” Obama chooses to publicly corner Israel. Amazing.
Perhaps Obama thinks that asking the Palestinians to drop their ‘symbolic’ search for recognition at the UN in September constitutes acting fairly to both sides, but to reiterate, I think that such a provocative public statement right ahead of a meeting with the Israeli Prime Minister puts all claims of friendship under deepest suspicion.
Dear Claudia USA, I really value your warm remarks. I read (on-line) many articles published in US dailies, and the readers’ comments and reactions. I have not reckoned the percentages, but the more I read the more I get the impression that many, too many people in the US are overtly hostile to Israel, either for ideological reasons, or because they consider that the US is too generous in its support of Israel, especially financial support. This is not new, but I cannot but feel that this position has been gaining momentum and support in the US. AIPAC is severely criticized, JStreet and AIPAC are at each other’s throat, instead of trying to find common grounds to support Israel. Thank you again for your words.
“Nakba echoes the widely disseminated Nazi slogan
“Die Juden sind unser Unglück”(The Jews are our
It was conjoined with “Juda verecke!”(“Jew! Die!”)
The torch has been passed without acknowledgement of
the incendiary source.
Sarah, we must challenge the radical Muslims’
antisemitic agitprop on U.S. and European university
campuses, so reminiscent of Goebbels and Streicher.
What is to be done?
Sara Honig is correct…historical records for the 20th century are more transparent than for any other human era. Nabka Day is in effect a celebration of the fact that the Jewish population of the nascent state were not massacred in 1948. A few years earlier Chauvel and his famous Light Horse Cavalry…so effective in defeating the Turks in Palestine in WW1…were appalled by Arab behaviour…when locals looted and pillaged their own people after the light horse had taken a town or village…moving north after the famous cavalry charge at Beersheba…this happened at Jenin and elsewhere. In more recent times the mass killings in Hama by the Assads in 1982 are well documented as are the massacres at Damour and Tel Zaatar in Lebanon. It is now a matter of historical record that Muslims are murdering innocents all over the world…they are killing Christians in Nigeria, Egypt, Iraq and Pakistan…Buddhists in Thailand…they fight each other in Gaza….in recent times they have slaughtered each other in the Iran-Iraq war…and in Kuwait… in Iraq and Kurdistan …they are killing each other in Somalia…in Pakistan…in Afghanistan…in India there has been violence between Muslims and Hindus…Muslims have been killing each other in Indonesia…and they have massacred innocents in London…in Spain…in Bali…in New York……and in Israel. In recent times the Palestinians have not been honest about their own history…the Turks seem to have a problem here as well.
S H Cohen
US Jews will now vote for Obama “only” 65% instead of the former 78%. Alon Pinkas says on Fox News Obama is right and Netanyahu wrong. Compared to Jewish betrayal of Israel, the Palestinian Nakba is insignificant.
Thanks for another great one.
It is easily one of the best summaries of what the so-called “Palestinian” issue is all about.
This is the sort of insight and information our leaders here in Israel should be trying to get across both at home and abroad.
In answer to Gunter Hiller’s question, What is to be done? I offer the following observation: Islam’s hatred for Jews, as well as Christians and other non-Muslims (Islam means Submit!) predates the Nazis by 1300 years. The order to murder non-believers is written throughout their “holy” book, the Qur’an, in numerous passages and in the ahadith, sayings of Muhammad. As long as this militant/political pseudo-religion is allowed, its instruction manuals are not banned, and its abomination the Ka’aba in Makkah and the hajj exist, the problem (ie. death or subjugation for all kuffar) will remain. In the words of Thomas Jefferson: “I have sworn eternal hostility to every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”
Those who oppose cruelty, injustice, and unrighteousness must take the bull by the horns, so to speak, and rise up against the tyranny that is Islam.
A short memeo to Eugene if I may here… Not for nothing did I withdraw my 1 month “old” subscription to JPOst’s paid Premium material. With New Israel Fund-funded Alon Liel, Pinkas et Co. it’s so heavily crammed with the outright morons and/or anti-Israel “haters” that I eventually, after having overseen my mistake, said to them: No, thank you. Sarah meanwhile is a fabulous and dazzling chronicler of history and true reporter of our times.