Below is an edited transcript of a speech given by David Horowitz at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill on March 12, 2012.
This speech is included as a chapter in the author's new book, “The Black Book of the American Left, Volume IV – Islamo-Fascism and the War Against the Jews.” (Order here.) We encourage our readers to visit BlackBookOfTheAmericanLeft.com
I want to thank Brandon Hartness, the Committee for a Better Carolina, and Christians United for Israel for inviting me to speak tonight. I wish I had also been invited by Jewish groups on this campus, but they are in a state of denial when it comes to the threat facing Israel and the Jews.
The subject of my talk is Israel, but it is really about America as well. Israel is the canary in the coal mine. When you watch Hassan Nasrallah, the head of Hezbollah, lead tens of thousands of Muslims in Lebanon in chants of “Death to America! Death to Israel!” you understand the fates of the two are linked. When you hear Iran’s dictator, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, lead similar crowds in chants of “Death to Israel! Death to America!” you see that they are linked. The coiner of the slogan linking them as enemies of Islam (and also the secular left) was the Ayatollah Khomeini, father of the modern jihad against the West, who called America “The Great Satan” and Israel “The Little Satan.”
When gauging human conflicts, it is important to look at people’s intentions. Probably none of you ever wondered why we don’t have missiles pointing towards our northern neighbor, or an army stationed on the Canadian border. That’s because we understand that, whatever resentments Canadians may have against us, and such national resentments are normal to human communities, their main intentions towards us are friendly and benign. But if people had understood or correctly read Hitler’s intentions in the 1930s, 70 million lives might have been saved. Hitler systemati- cally violated the international peace agreements that were meant to keep Germany from re-emerging as a major aggressive power. Then he took Austria and a major piece of Czechoslovakia, fore- shadowing his designs to take on the world. But there were always people in the West, leaders in the West, who said, “We can do busi- ness with Hitler, we can negotiate with him, we can appease his appetites short of war.” And they were wrong.
The Jews, too, misread Hitler’s intentions. There would be a lot more Jews in the world today if the Jews had understood the intentions of the Nazis. There were five hundred thousand Jews imprisoned in the Warsaw Ghetto. But they didn’t think the Germans were going to kill them. Even when the Germans put them in these ghettos which they were not allowed to leave, the Jews didn’t wake up. They formed governing councils and organized themselves, identifying all their inhabitants as though they were citizens of a normal state. And this simply made it easier for the Germans to ship them out to the concentration camps and the gas chambers. They thought they were going to work- camps. All in all, they made it easier for the Germans to kill them because they thought the Germans were too civilized to commit such heinous crimes. The Jewish communities of Europe misread the intentions of the Germans, and now they no longer exist.
So I want to begin this talk tonight by reading some statements made by Palestinian leaders, which express their intentions towards the Jews. Mahmoud al-Zahar is a founder of Hamas and one of its current leaders. This is what he has said: “There is no place for you Jews among us, and you have no future among the nations of the world. You are headed for annihilation.” Ahmad Bahar, who is acting chairman of the Gaza parliament and a member of Hamas, has said: “Be certain that America is on its way to disappear. Allah take hold of the Jews and their allies. Allah take hold of the Americans and their allies. Allah count them and kill
them to the last one, don’t leave even one.” On the official Hamas website, there is a video of a Hamas suicide bomber who can be seen saying this: “My message to the Jews is that there is no god but Allah. We are a nation that drinks blood and we know that there is no blood better than the blood of Jews. We will not leave you alone until we have quenched our thirst with your blood and our children’s thirst with your blood.”
Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brother- hood, spoke not long ago to millions of reverent Muslims on Al Jazeera TV and said this: “Throughout history Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler by means of all the things he did to them—even though they exaggerated this issue— he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them. Allah willing, the next time will be at the hands of the believers.”1 In other words, Islam intends to finish the job that Hitler started—or Muhammad, for that matter. The prophet Muhammad has said, as recorded in a holy hadith: “The Day of Judgment will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews, when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say, ‘O Muslims, O Abdullah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’”2 This genocidal saying of the prophet is quoted in the Hamas Charter, which also says: “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.”3
On American campuses across this country, members of Students for Justice in Palestine and the Muslim Students Association chant: “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” The river is the Jordan, which is Israel’s border to the east; the sea is the Mediterranean, which is Israel’s border to the west. “From the river to the sea” is Israel. What Students for Justice in Palestine are chanting, what members of the Muslim Students Association and their leftist allies are chanting, is a statement of intention to oblit- erate the state of Israel.
What is “Palestine”? The name is not Arabic. It is a name that was given to Judea and Samaria, which is now called the West Bank, and which is the historic homeland of the Jews. In 66 AD the Jews had the bad judgment to rebel against the Roman Empire; they were defeated, and a million Jews were killed. To humiliate the Jews of Judea still further, the Romans renamed their home- land after their enemies, the Philistines. There were no Arabs in the region at that time. The Philistines were red-headed Aegean sailors, not Arabs. For 2000 years after that, there was no people calling itself Palestinian. In fact, there was no people calling itself Palestinian until 1964, fifteen years after the state of Israel had been created, which is one of the reasons that Newt Gingrich recently observed that the Palestinians are “an invented people.” Palestine is the name of a region, like “New England.” If you were talking about Palestinians in 1948, you would have been talking about Jews. We inhabit a kind of surreal universe now, particularly in universities, which are the most conformist institutions in our country, which is why these facts might seem strange. The university has become a one-party state where people on the left talk to each other and nobody challenges them, which is why everything I’m going to say tonight will probably seem strange. But if you can overcome your emotions and look at the facts, you’ll see that everything I’m saying is accurate.
The, Big Lie repeated by Hamas and the PLO, by everyone on the political Left and by all supporters of the Palestinian cause, is the claim that Israel occupies Palestinian land, or that it occupies Arab land. In fact, the land that Israel was created on, which is the same land that Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan were created on,
belonged to the Ottoman Turks for 400 years prior to that. Turks are not Arabs. The Turks joined the losing side in the First World War, and when the war was over the Ottoman Empire was dismantled. This accorded with international law and international tradition. After the war, the European victors were given mandates over the conquered empire, and they carved out these five nations. The “Palestine Mandate” was a piece of the defeated empire, a region and not a people. Along with the Jews, there were Arabs living in the Mandate, but there was no “Palestinian people.” In 1922, Churchill assigned 80 percent of the Palestine Mandate to a state he named “Trans-Jordan,” which is now the state of Jordan. Seventy percent of the people living in this area were Arabs who inhabited the region called “Palestine.” In other words, 70 percent of Jordan is “Palestinian.” But you never hear anybody complain that Jordan is “occupied” Palestine. Jordan is 80 percent of the landmass of the original Palestine Mandate. Where is the movement for self-determination of Jordan’s Palestinians? There is none. There is none because the agenda of the Palestinians and their leftwing supporters is not to create a Palestinian state but to push the Jews into the sea.
[At this point about 40 members of the audience, most of them members of the Muslim Students Association and Students for Justice in Palestine, and supporters of Hamas—some wearing keffiyehs, the terrorist symbol created by Yasser Arafat— marched out of the room on a prearranged cue.4]
Goodbye, everybody. These are supposed to be college stu- dents, supposed to be at this school to learn.
To continue, the British and the United Nations divided the remaining 20 percent of the original Palestine Mandate between the Jews and the Arabs. They divided the remaining 20 percent equally, except that they gave the Jews three slivers of land, not exactly contiguous, and 60 percent of that land was an arid desert. The Arabs were awarded the west bank of the Jordan River, which is the historic homeland of the Jews. But the Arabs rejected their share of the land, and on the day Israel was created in 1948, eight Arab dictatorships attacked the Jews with the stated intention of pushing them into the sea. That war has never ended. It is the Arabs’ aggression against the state of Israel, their desire to push the Jews into the sea, that is the cause—the sole cause—of the con- flict in the Middle East.
Following their victory in the 1948 war, the Israelis offered to sign a peace with the Arabs and live side by side with an Arab state. But the Arabs did not want a Palestinian state, then or for the next sixty years. They rejected a state every time it was offered to them because that has never been their goal. Their goal is to expel a non-Muslim people from the region, and make it Muslim. Islam is—and has always been—an imperial religion that expands by force. No one can leave Islam. For apostates, the sentence is death. Similarly, once an area is Muslim, it has to remain Muslim. That is the creed.
When the war ended in 1949, Egypt annexed Gaza and Jordan annexed the West Bank. There was not a peep out of the entire Arab world about the annexation of Gaza or the annexation of Jordan, or the fact that the so-called Palestinians not only lacked a home, they didn’t have the land they had been promised to build on. Why was there no protest? Because the war was not about self- determination for the Palestinians or the Arabs. It was, and still is, about getting rid of the Jews.
The founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hassan al-Banna, was an admirer of Hitler. In 1948, al-Banna said, “If the Jews get a state in Israel, Islam will push the Jews into the sea.” That is the agenda, and it has never changed. In 1964, when the West Bank was still part of Jordan and Gaza still part of Egypt, the Egyptian dictator Nasser sponsored the creation of the Palestine Liberation Organization as a weapon against the Jews. You can read the original PLO charter on the Internet. You will not find a word about liberating the Palestinians of the West Bank, or about self-determi- nation for the Palestinians of Gaza. The PLO mission, as stated in its charter, is all about obliterating the Zionists—Israel—the Jews.
As a result of Israel’s victory in the 1967 war, the West Bank and Gaza were liberated from Egypt and Jordan. That war was the second Arab aggression in 20 years whose stated purpose was to destroy the Jewish state. When Israel won the war, it offered to return Gaza and the West Bank to Arab rule in exchange for a peace treaty that would recognize Israel’s right to exist. The Arabs rejected the offer. The aggressors all met in Khartoum in 1967 and issued a joint statement which is generally referred to as “The Three No’s”—“No recognition of Israel; No negotiation; No peace.” That is the reason Israeli troops continued to occupy Gaza and the West Bank. Their purpose was to prevent further aggressions by the Arab states through these corridors, and also to prevent their use as terrorist launching pads by the PLO and Hamas.
Israel cannot just unilaterally withdraw from these territories and allow those who seek its destruction to attack again. They need to have a peace treaty that recognizes their right to exist, and they need to redraw their borders to make their territory more defensible. It is the internationally recognized procedure for dealing with aggressors, when they lose, to redraw the map so that the victims have a greater ability to defend themselves the next time. Germany attacked Poland twice in the 20th century, so in 1945 the Allies took the entire region of East Prussia, which was the industrial heartland of Germany, and gave it to Poland. How many Germans do you think had to be resettled? Twelve million. Twelve million Germans were uprooted from places they had inhabited since the Middle Ages. And nobody complained. If the Jews had acted the way other nations act, they would have annexed the West Bank in 1967 and they would have moved all the Arabs into Jordan, which is a majority Palestinian state. But they didn’t do that. The Jews tried to be nice. They thought: if we’re nice to them, they’ll be nice to us. No, they won’t. They hate you, and want to push you into the sea.
In the years preceding the 1993 Oslo accords, when Israel was the ruling authority in the West Bank and Gaza, the Israelis poured hundreds of millions of dollars into these territories and created universities; the economy of the West Bank grew at a rate that was the fifth-fastest in the world. Then came the so-called “Oslo peace process,” which established the Palestinian Authority, brought the terrorist Arafat back from Tunisia and gave him control of the West Bank and Gaza. Within six months of Palestinian rule, the standard of living in Gaza had declined by 25 percent and the unemployment rate went from 10 to 40 percent. These are the real oppressors of Palestinians: the PLO and Hamas.
The malicious intentions towards the Jews are not extraneous to this struggle. They are the struggle. The father of Palestinian nationalism is Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, who led massacres of the Jews in the 1920s and 1930s because they were Jews—well before the creation of the state of Israel. Al-Husseini was a Nazi—literally—who went to Berlin to serve Hitler. Al-Husseini was a protégé of Hassan al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood. He recruited an Arab legion to fight for Hitler, and also drew up his own plans to create a death camp for Jews in the Middle East. The only reason his plan wasn’t implemented was that Montgomery defeated Rommel in the ba tle of El Alamein. Today, al-Husseini is honored on the West Bank with a holiday as the founder of the Palestinian cause.
This is a Nazi movement. The statements I read at the outset of this talk are Nazi statements. The difference is this: Hitler concealed his plans for the Final Solution because he thought the Ger- man people were too civilized to accept them. The Palestinians and their Iranian allies shout their plans from the rooftops. Where in the Muslim world is the great dissent from this evil summons? It is too bad that all our Muslim friends have left the room and did not stay to hear this; but notwithstanding the evil intentions of Muslim leaders in the Middle East, there are good Muslims and there are bad Muslims, and most are probably good Muslims— decent, law-abiding, desirous of peace. But there were good
Germans, too, and in the end they didn’t make a damn’s worth of difference. I will know a moderate Muslim when he or she stands up and condemns these kinds of statements and the actions they inspire. It’s not really that hard to know who your friends are. But a lot of people have difficulty in knowing who their enemies are, and that is the problem we are facing today.
Israel is in a very hard place. A significant portion of its plight is its own doing—not reading the intentions of its enemies. The Oslo peace accords were a disastrous mistake. When Oslo began, the terrorist Yasser Arafat was in exile in Tunisia. For the sake of peace with people who wanted to push them into the sea, the Jews brought Arafat back to Ramallah and armed his terrorist “police force” with 40-thousand weapons. Instead of sowing the seeds of peace, this offering was taken as an opportunity by Israel’s enemies to begin a new phase in their war of extermination, one in which the Hamas Nazis are dictating the tactics—suicide bombing in particular, and now rocket attacks from the territory of Gaza, which Israel had evacuated in order to give peace a chance.
Why do people fall for these illusions? Why would they think that other people, having stated quite clearly their goal to obliterate them, might be persuaded by appeasement and withdrawal to give up that goal? It’s the “hopey-changey” thing in all of us. The wish is father to the thought. We want things to be better; we don’t want to face the fact that there is evil in the world, and that it has to be contained by superior force. People don’t want to hear that. On our college campuses today, you can’t even inform people about the threats we are facing. Our Freedom Center has produced a pamphlet, written by Dan Greenfield, about Muslim hate-groups on campuses; it describes in great detail the malevolent activities of the Muslim Students Association and Students for Justice in Palestine.5 I tried to place an ad for that pamphlet in thirty college papers. Only one, Ohio State, agreed to print it—a paid advertise- ment, mind you. Of course, there was a big eruption when it appeared in the Ohio State paper.
On a college campus, you can’t talk about Palestinians having evil intentions. That’s offensive. According to the editor of one of the papers to whom we submitted our ad, it’s a “generalization” and that’s unacceptable. You can’t say all Palestinians support terrorism or the war to obliterate the Jewish state. That would be racist. All right, where is the Palestinian “Peace Now” organization? Tell me that. Where is the Palestinian standing up in the West Bank or Gaza, or in the United States, for the rights of Jews? There are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Jews who are standing up for what they perceive to be the rights of Palestinians. But there are no Palestinians or members of the Muslim Students Association refuting the lie that Israel is an “apartheid state.” It’s all about intentions. It’s all about culture. And the Palestinian culture is a culture of hate.
Don’t tell me that Palestinians in their majorities, and through their elected governments, support suicide bombers because they are desperate; that “the Israelis have tanks, we have suicide bombers.” People have been oppressed in many places for thou- sands of years, horribly oppressed; but never in the entire history of mankind has an oppressed people strapped bombs on its own children and sent them to blow themselves up and kill other children, telling them that if they do, and they are lucky enough to be male, they will go to heaven and receive 72 virgins as a reward for their good deed. That is sick. Gaza is a death-cult created by Hamas. A similar cult exists in the West Bank, run by Hamas’s ally the Palestine Liberation Organization, which lionizes the murderers of children, makes national heroes of terrorists who set out to target children. Who does this but psychopaths? The Palestinian regimes have institutionalized psychopathic behavior. You can see it on the Web—the preachers preaching “death to Jews,” the little kids dressed up as suicide bombers, the children’s television cartoons encouraging them to murder Jews.
There was a documentary on HBO called A Death in Gaza, made by liberals, which was about this death cult. The filmmakers followed two twelve-year-old boys who were hanging around Hamas, aspiring to be suicide bombers. They recited poems in their school classes about becoming suicide bombers. It was a very sad picture. During the film, one of the kids was shot. Suddenly he was transformed back into a little kid no longer boasting about becoming a suicide bomber but crying for his mother, screaming in pain. In another sequence, one of the boys was playing “rock, paper, scissors” with a Hamas terrorist. When the kid went back home, the filmmaker said to the terrorist: “I see that you use this kid as a runner and lookout. Isn’t that a little dangerous for a twelve-year-old? He could get killed.” The terrorist answered: “Oh, we have thousands of kids like that we can replace him with.”
At the end of the film, the director himself is killed. Nobody knows who killed him. He is out in the field and is shot. The film ends with a sequence with the kids. After they come through the terrible experience of one of them being wounded and in pain, the filmmakers ask them what they’d like to be now, and they say, “filmmakers.” That’s how sick that situation is. These kids begin their lives, like most kids, with hope and decent aspirations, and the adults turn them into aspiring terrorists. This is a whole society geared to bringing up its children to kill Jews.
I’ve talked to campus leftists who are supporting the Palestinian cause, and they’re not stupid. So why are they sucked into this sickness, into being apologists for evil? I have some insight into this because I grew up in the left. My own parents were Communists and I was one of the founders of the New Left, so I have a fairly educated view as to what might go on in the minds of those who are seduced by causes. Everywhere one looks in this world, one can see misery and suffering. If the world could be changed to eliminate the suffering, who would not want to see that happen? Progressives and leftists are social redeemers. They want to repair the world and alleviate the suffering. What they refuse to see is the awful legacy of the movements that have actually set out to change the world. Nazism was one. If we just rid the world of the Jews and the mongrel races, we can create heaven on earth. Com- munism was another. If we just get rid of the capitalists—the 1 percent—we can create paradise on earth. What Communist pro- gressives created, in fact, was the most oppressive state in the his- tory of the world. In the name of “social justice” they murdered 120 million people, in peacetime, created unimaginable poverty and man-made famines. That’s what progressives produce when they get the power to pursue their ends.
The lesson of this history is that you can only change the world a little piece at a time. There’s a reason we are where we are and not somewhere else. The obstacle to the realization of all progressive utopias is human nature. You can read all the Marxist and leftist texts ever written and never encounter a serious consideration of what people are actually made of—what they are capable of—and consequently why it is so difficult to produce a society of human beings that is fundamentally different from the way human beings have lived since the beginning of recorded time. In the absence of such sobering reflection, the fantasy persists: we’re going to change the world. It is the fantasy that inspires Osama bin Laden and the jihadists: We will make everybody Muslim and force them to live under sharia law, and then the world will be a holy place. And if you don’t agree to be holy, we’ll kill you— exactly the same mentality as the Nazis and the Communists.
There’s a natural affinity between all movements for an earthly redemption. That’s why the Islamists have been able to make common cause with progressives and have learned to talk in the language of the left—the totalitarian language of social justice. It’s a noble idea, but it is also an impossible—and therefore horribly destructive — dream.
1 - Sheik Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, “Allah Imposed Hitler Upon the Jews to Pun- ish Them,” Middle East Media Research Institute (aired on Al Jazeera TV, January 30, 2009); http://www.memritv.org/clip_transcript/en/ 2005.htm
2 - “Islam and Anti-Semitism,” Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Islam_and_antisemitism
3 - Hamas Charter, (Hamas Covenant 1988), http://avalon.law.yale.edu/ 20th_century/hamas.asp
5- Daniel Greenfield, “Muslim Hate Groups on Campus,” January 20, 2012; http://frontpagemag.com/2012/frontpagemag-com/muslim-hate-groups- on-campus-2/