UPDATE: Our European correspondent Lexington suggested that we include this quote, which will serve as an appropriate preface for the entire post:
On March 31, 1977 in the Dutch newspaper Trouw, in an interview with PLO executive committee member, Zahir Muhsein said:
“The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, ‘Palestinians’, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct ‘Palestinian people’ to oppose Zionism.”
Our Flemish correspondent VH has translated an article from Xander Nieuws concerning the unusual opinions of an Italian Muslim leader about the nation of Israel and the Palestinians:
Muslim Sheikh: “Jews are entitled to all of Israel”
“Italian Muslim leader says Palestinian people does not exist”
[Photo caption: Last month there were many protests against the halt as decreed by the government of Netanyahu in construction of Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria.]
Just as there is a small group of Jews that oppose Israel, there are — mostly literate — Muslims who are very pro-Israel. Professor Sheikh Adbul Hadi Palazzi is the leader of the Italian Muslim community and declared this week during his visit to Jerusalem that the Jews are entitled to all of Israel and the Palestinians not only have nothing to look for there, but as a people do not even exist.
Palazzi was in Jerusalem for an interview with Aryeh King, activist, director and founder of the Israel Land Fund organization. The location where two gentlemen met, the Intercontinental Seven Arches Hotel in East Jerusalem, was not chosen at random: in the same hotel the Palestinian terrorist PLO was founded, and there it was declared that the Palestinians would not rest until every Jew had been driven in the Mediterranean Sea.
King: “If people would understand this, they would know that it’s not at all about the “Green Line” (pre-1967 border) or about Hebron, Jericho or East Jerusalem. The struggle is about all of Israel, including Tel Aviv, Haifa and Ashdod. Unfortunately, there are many leaders, including Israeli, who do not understand this. Fortunately, there are also leaders such as Abdul Hadi Palazzi, who do understand this, and recognize the importance of Jerusalem (for the Jews) as the fact that here, at the site of the Dome of the Rock Mosque, the Temple of Solomon once stood.”
The Italian Muslim Community, the organization Sheikh Palazzi is leader of, has committed itself to a positive attitude by Muslims towards the Jews in Israel, and is basing itself thereby on authentic Islamic sources. According to him Israel should just continue to build Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria (West of the river Jordan, also called “West Bank”), particularly while there are no negotiations with the Palestinians taking place.
“The Government of Israel must be brave,” according to Palazzi. “They should say to be ready for negotiations, but as long as the Palestinians reject recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, these negotiations are pointless.”
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“Until now, the Palestinian Authority have thought that time works to their advantage. They receive a lot, but in the meanwhile do nothing at all. Their leaders will be paid by the international community anyway, but that money is only used to strengthen their own position. But only when they understand that as long as they do not recognize Israel as a Jewish state, time will not work in their advantage because there are no negotiations taking place, a change may occur.”
Palazzi is strongly opposed to the building freeze in settlements as announced by the Netanyahu government. “As long as there are no negotiations this is seen as a sign of weakness. Yes, the European Union and President Obama will protest if the building activities continue, but what can they do against it? Nothing! Therefore, the Israeli people should just grow in all areas, so as to show that negotiations are not intended to paralyze one party.”
“The Jews have the right to all of Israel as their own country. The completely wrong starting point of the (previous) negotiations was the avowed support for the Palestinian claim (to their own state). During the British Mandate, the area was divided into two countries: Jordan and Israel, with the river Jordan as a border. The world must accept that Israel won the Six Day War (1967) and conquered the region up to the Jordan [that had been illegally conquered and occupied by Jordan up until then]. The Jordanians who lived there should be able to remain, provided they accept their status as foreign residents on Israeli territory, as is usual in any other country. The claim that they now want to establish a state on Israeli territory should therefore not be accepted.”
Palazzi adds that the Palestinians as a people have never existed, and therefore have no rights at all to any part of Israel whatsoever. “The PLO did not represent a state and was no political authority. Most leaders of the PLO were from the elsewhere in the region, Arafat for example was an Egyptian, Faizal Husseini (Arafat’s chief assistant) was from Iraq. The biggest mistake, therefore, has been that these people were recognized as representatives of the local Arab population. Moreover, the Arabs who lived there initially refused to accept them as their leaders, but continued to view themselves more as Jordanians — and thus not Palestinians.”
However, “During ‘Oslo’ [the peace agreement in 1993] this was entirely changed; all Arab countries were afraid to speak out against the PLO. That is why the situation after ‘Oslo’ only got worse, both for Israel and the Arab population.”
According to Palazzi, there are more and more Muslims who silently agree with him. This, according to him, is among other reasons partly due to the repeated threats of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to destroy Israel. As proof of this he mentions the demonstration at the Iranian embassy in Rome, which was called for by his organization, where another Muslim organization also joined them. “There are many Muslim leaders in Rome who have fled the extremist situation in their home countries. Therefore they consider the threat they faced in those countries as the same as threat that Israel is now undergoing. “
See the video here.
VH adds that the video features: