AuschwitzIsrael news photo: Flash 90

A Jordanian columnist has criticized a call made by a Palestinian Authority ambassador to teach the Holocaust in Arab schools, as well as the visit of a PA official to Auschwitz.

The journalist, Faiz Rashid, made the comments in an article in the Qatari daily Al-Sharq which appeared last August. The article was translated into English by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

In the article, Rashid demanded to teach the Nakba (the term used by Arabs to describe what they view as the “catastrophe” of the establishment of the State of Israel) instead of the Holocaust. He also expressed doubt as to the scope of the Holocaust, citing books by Holocaust researchers and deniers, including Roger Garaudy.

"Here's the latest gimmick. A Palestinian ambassador in one of the world countries [Germany] gave an interview to Israeli reporter Barak Ravid, in which he demanded to teach generation upon generation about the 'Jewish Holocaust,'” Rashid wrote.

“According to the online magazine Dunya Al-Watan and many other websites, the interview was published in the [Israeli] daily Haaretz this July, in Hebrew and English. The ambassador said that the Holocaust was a human tragedy whose victims were the Jews, and that we must teach generation upon generation about it as a painful and terrifying event, so that it never repeats itself. Also, two weeks ago, a Palestinian official visited Poland, where the Holocaust took place, and laid flowers there, and a former Palestinian ambassador in a certain country [Poland] held a ceremony commemorating the Holocaust, to which he invited the Zionist ambassador to that country, David Peleg.

“These officials seem to be living on Mars!” claimed Rashid. “It is as though they are not experiencing the suffering of our Palestinian people, which, for almost 100 years, has known hundreds of massacres and dozens of attacks, wars and every type of catastrophe at the hands of the Israeli enemy and the Zionist movement. [These officials are responding to] the pressure exerted by the U.S., Europe and the West on the Arab countries, including the PA, and on UNRWA to incorporate the Holocaust into the Arab and Palestinian curricula. In addition, there is also Israeli pressure to refrain from teaching the Palestinian Nakba. Israel has passed laws that prohibit our people inside the 1948 [territories] [i.e., the Israeli Arabs] to mark Nakba Day, under [penalty] of imprisonment for many years.”

He was referring to what has come to be known as the Nakba Law, passed in 2011, which stipulates that the Minister of Finance may withhold or reduce budgets from government-funded bodies who deny the existence of Israel.

Rashid then went on to claim that Jews have exaggerated the Holocaust so they can usurp “Palestinian” lands.

“The Nazis perpetrated massacres against all the European peoples. They burned down thousands of towns and villages. The USSR lost 20 million of its sons at their hands, and many other European nations [likewise] lost many of their sons,” he wrote. “[So] why the focus on the Jewish victims? The Zionist movement exaggerated the Holocaust in order to provide a legal excuse to usurp Palestine, expel its people, bring the [Jewish] immigrants there and establish its state, and in order to blackmail the countries of Europe, especially Germany.”

He then claimed, “The Zionist movement conspired with the Nazis against the Jews: it signed the 1933 transfer agreement with Germany in order to facilitate the immigration of Jews from Germany to Palestine. In 1934 it signed another agreement, meant to encourage the export of German [goods] to Palestine, so [the Zionists] could market them. The contacts between the Zionist movement and the Nazis continued. In September 1937, Eichmann and [Herbert] Hagen met in Palestine with Feivel Polkes, a representative of the Haganah terrorist organization, and it was agreed that 'the Zionist movement would provide the Gestapo with every information on the Jewish organizations in Europe and on all their activities against the Nazis, and, in return, the Nazis would support the establishment of the Zionist state. These [examples] of the collaboration between the two sides are only a drop in the sea. Interested [readers] can find further details in other books on this topic.

"The Nuremberg Tribunal determined the official [number of] Holocaust victims – six million Jews – based on the testimony of only two witnesses, Hubtel and Lubzisny [sic], both of them Nazi officers,” claimed Rashid. “That is not enough. Moreover, not a single document signed by Hitler or by any other top Nazi official was found that orders to exterminate the Jews. Many writers and researchers agreed unanimously (after visiting the sites of the extermination camps) that they couldn't have held such a vast number of people. Assuming the camps really operated, it would have taken decades to burn all [those people]. As for the gas used in burning [them], it was cyanide, which is expensive and must be handled with great care.”

He concluded by saying, “There is only thing left to say: The call to teach the Holocaust should be replaced by a call to teach the Nakba.”