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February 18, 2008

The Holocaust is a Revalation of the Absence of the Divine

Israel Prize winner Rabbi David Weiss-Halivni, the former Illui of Sighet, discusses the Holocaust after the jump in the extended post:

Halivni retired about three years ago and decided to immigrate to Israel, which is what made it possible for him to be awarded the Israel Prize (which is contingent on Israeli citizenship). Last fall, he published a new book, "Breaking the Tablets" (Rowman, Littlefield), which deals with post-Holocaust Jewish theology. Halivni sharply attacks those who pose the question of why the Holocaust happened, and especially those who try to "explain" it by various sins, calling them collaborators with the Nazis. In his opinion, Auschwitz is tantamount to a divine revelation, such as the revelation on Mount Sinai, but is opposite to it in nature: "This is a revelation of the absence of the divine, a revelation of the possibility of God's absence from the world."

Halivni lost his entire family in the Holocaust. Halivni himself was a prisoner in a Nazi work camp and in Auschwitz.

The entire Ha'aretz profile.

Comments

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You should put this in a sticky post at the top of your blog so that the next time some idiot rabbi decides that the Holocaust happened because of Reform or chilul Shabbos or not enough people wearing black hats it can be trotted out.

Kol hakavod.

The Holocaust does not prove the absence,nor does it prove the presence of the Divine. It may have come as a result of some "sins", but that would also be conjecture. Even assuming that it came as a result of sins, who dare point a finger at ANY one!! All Jews commit sins, all humans commit sins. No one is perfect, nor will anyone ever be. That goes for Charedim, M.O., Conservative, Reform, Neolog, etc. We can no more blame the Holocaust on Chillul Shabbat, than on Charedim who rejected chances to return to Erets Yisrael!! (Many Medieval G'dolim, "paskened" that Yishuv Ha'arets is a mitzva!!)

Did the "right" do anything to convince the "left" that it was wrong? (Aside from name calling)

Everyone is guilty, and yet, seen in the magnitude of a Holocaust, everyone was innocent, too!!

The Talmud tells us, "tipchu atsmotam shel choshvai kitzin" (those who try to second guess the end of time, may their bones rot!)

It is not for us to decide what caused a catasrophe like the Holocaust. All we can do is mourn the dead, and INDIVIDUALLY EXAMINE OUR DEEDS!! If I feel that I am doing something wrong, I have the right to scold MYSELF!! I cannot judge another Jew, who is doing what he does, WHEN HE WAS TAUGHT THAT IT IS RIGHT!!
And , any Jew who is doing what he knows is wrong, must also judge HIMSELF!!

CD, as we all agree G-d gives free will to all humanity. So also the Nazis and their supporters had free will to choose between good and evil. They chose evil. G-d was always there in the Holocaust. G-d has never stopped being everywhere. The Nazis were very bad people, and also the Allies, by not bombing the railroads that led to the camps, assisted the Nazis.

Illui or not, asserting that the Holocaust shows the absence of the divine is no less rediculous than any other assertion as to what the Holocaust represents.

I remember hearing a Rosh Yeshiva from Mir (Yerusahalayim) once blaming the Shoah on the arrogance of the yeshiva world at that time (akin to the Omer). The argument was that it was predominantly the religious world that was killed during the war, not the secular/Zionist/assimilationist Germans who were killed. And I once heard a French Jewish professor say that it was the fault of the Eastern European Jews who insisted on wearing kippot and jewelery in public (hence the same will happen in America, etc).
Of course, the whole concept of placing blame on the victims rather than the perpetrators is rather absurd and quite nasty. It is good that Prof. Halivni has written this book, although it is worth noting that Prof. Fackenheim, alav hashalom, made many of these arguments quite a few years ago.
Here is one case, by the way, where the Lubavitcher Rebbe was totally on the mark, and deserves credit (n this preceded by the Aish Kodesh, see a shiur up at http://www.tikkun.org/rabbi_lerner/torah_commentary/vayehi.html/document_view. Just before the first Iraq war, he wrote a letter widely reprinted arguing that there are times when the proper response theologically, as Gd replies to R. Akiva in Menachot, is silence, "shtok, kach ala b'machshavti".

"we all agree G-d gives free will to all humanity. So also the Nazis and their supporters had free will to choose between good and evil. They chose evil. G-d was always there in the Holocaust. G-d has never stopped being everywhere. The Nazis were very bad people, and also the Allies, by not bombing the railroads that led to the camps, assisted the Nazis."

Surely there are many that do not all agree with this "free will" concept, taken from fairy tale books.

Nonetheless, this imaginary God (who is said to be omnipotent, and who is believed to act in individual cases (how many times has one heard about these miraculous testimonies), divine intervention the great rebbes say, but somehow forgot to act in the biggest tragedy in humanity, if he exist he permitted this to happen.

How can this invisible God have given free will, when it is also said that he also knows everything that will happen in advance, which would indicate that ALL that will happen has already been pre-planned, which would make the concept of free will moot.

It is an absolute enormous insult to say on one hand that God exist and is very concerned about the way we behave and act, who then allows for these unbelievable atrocities against mostly Torah observing people.

People like you with these idiotic rants ignore free choice. The nations of the world allied against the Jews. They made their choice to try to destroy us, and it wasn't the first time.

What to explain Chaim Weizmann and the British cooperation in the extermination of Hungarian Jews?

Oh right, Smarya has already tried unsuccessfully to whitewash that...

Here is one case, by the way, where the Lubavitcher Rebbe was totally on the mark

The Rebbe had earlier tried to theologically explain the Holocaust and caught hell for it.

Chabad has tried to wipe that incident off the public record.

Professor Yehuda Bauer recently made sure Chabad's whitewash would not work.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What to explain Chaim Weizmann and the British cooperation in the extermination of Hungarian Jews?

Another false and bizarre attempt to make Zionists evil and Orthodox Jews good.

British Zionists did NOT "cooperate" in the extermination of Hungarian Jews.

If anyone did "cooperate," albeit unintentionally, it would be various haredi rabbis – including the Satmar Rebbe.

"People like you with these idiotic rants ignore free choice. The nations of the world allied against the Jews. They made their choice to try to destroy us, and it wasn't the first time."

America, Canada, Australia etc... are these the nations you are taking about as well, the ones that have accepted my grandparents and relatives with openness and tolerance.

It seems a lame excuse to pass a supposed Gods will on others, if it occurs it is by his will and choice, if he so exist nothing can happen without his approval.

What free choice is there when God has already pre-planned everything that fas happened and will ever happen, according to the rabbis, he leaves no free choice, can you process the absurdity of this fallacious concept.

It seems some lack the ability to process, explaining the absurdity of what some believe is not ranting, either this imaginary God; if God is omnipotent and can do as he wills, and if when he can do something, chooses not to, then he is not benevolent.

If God could interfere and does not, does he really care? after numerous (ancient) interfering (supposedly) now he practices avoidance, how absurd a belief this seems.
"Theological determinism is the thesis that there is a God who determines all that humans will do, either by knowing their actions in advance, via some form of omniscience[7] or by decreeing their actions in advance.[8] The problem of free will, in this context, is the problem of how our actions can be free, if there is a being who has determined them for us ahead of time."

The traditional response to your question is that it's sure true that G-d knows what the future holds, since He shapes it and forces it into the future He approves. But you and I don't have God's knowledge. So, everyday, in every way, I do what I want to do. Every time. Shall I do something kind? No? Kill someone? No? Go to work? Eat without bentching? Sleep around? Put on tfilin? Give charity? The list of my actions is near endless. I do what I want. The fact that God is way above me, knows how I'm (and we're) going to act and doesn't clue me (and us) in, is one of the great frustrations and mysteries, I guess. But it doesn't make it less true. I do what I want all the time. God knows how it will all play out. He's not talking. So continue to act freely, regardless of God's overarching superior knowledge. And you'll be responsible for all your actions, regardless of how it all plays out in the ultimate end.
Works for me. How about you?

Shmarya-

You ruined my day, I always thought that letter from the Lubavitcher Rebbe to be a great statement, I was unaware that there were previous "Hutnerite" statements (classically, the earliest and most influential article stating an Orthodox position blaming the secular Jews for the Shoah came from R. Hutner, which surprised many) by the LR. What did he say, and where?
I suppose one allows even great Jewish leaders the opportunity to "do teshuva" so I wouldn't hold the earlier statements against him, but I'm curious.

Shmuel, etc-
I do hope we don't end up with a review of first year medieval theology. There are many satisfactory attempts at squaring free will with Gd's foreknowledge, the Rambam's (which you allude to) is a popular one, but there are many (I was always fonder of the "middle knowledge" approach found in many of the later Jewish philosophers).
The Shoah is a unique challenge, though, because what kind of punishment in the "ultimate end" can one mete out to someone who threw babies into a crematoria? This argument (in terms of R. Akiva's horrible death) is, of course, what the Gemora in Menachot states led to Gd's response of "silence!".

Anonymous,
If you don't believe in G-d, which you obviously don't, why do you care?
I believe in G-d, so I must never argue with G-d,
"My ways are not thy ways, saith the Eternal".
If you don't want to believe in G-d, fine, don't believe in G-d. But you're trying to have it both ways.

Shmarya-
Thanks. I would prefer to see the original text before passing judgement. As I do know the later text well, I choose to allow him the benefit of rethinking the position; the latter text was published widely in many newspapers and as a response to R. Schach's taking the older position (just prior to the first Iraq war, claiming that the secular "rabbit eating kibbutzniks" would lead to the destruction of Israel through Saddam's hands as new Nebuchadnezzar). So I'm not a Lubavitcher by any means, and no fan of failed messianisms, but the man took a moving and complex position on this matter, in opposition to the more politically powerful R. Schach, and I respect that. And recall that many were unable to voice reasonable positions on this, the standard line one hears is the Hutner line, and honestly neither Buber nor Heschel had much to say, so at the end of the day, there's Fackenheim, the later letter of the Lubavitcher, and now Halivni-Weiss in terms of non-absurd responses to the Shoah.
Its worth making the point that even if one does not believe that a Gd could allow such an event to occur, its harder to imagine a world in which the victims weren't in some way consoled by a Gd. I find it hard to live in a universe in which there cries were not heard by a loving Gd. That's not a philosophical argument of course, just a very strong will to live in a meaningful universe. Needless to say, that kind of Gd would also not be in a hurry to willfully cause such a cataclysmic event because of "reform" or "Zionists" (who Gd then rewards in 1967?).

"Another false and bizarre attempt to make Zionists evil and Orthodox Jews good."

No, not all zionists were evil. But those who allowed Jews to be slaughtered were. And those who preferred only "select" Jews be allowed into "Palestine" while others be left to suffer their fate in Europe because of 'unchosenness' were.

"British Zionists did NOT "cooperate" in the extermination of Hungarian Jews."

British Zionists? What in the world are you talking about? I said the British. When they banned immigration to "palestine" during the Shoah, I don't think they had the audacity to call themselves "zionists" did they?

Let's see smarya stand up for his british idols now.

What a twisted person you are. The British "cooperated" in the Nazi slaughter of Hungarian Jews?

Are you insane?

Anonymous poster: What you defined as 'theological determinism' is not Judaism. Perhaps you're confusing the two.

Smarya brings the ad hominem attacks now unable to deny the facts.

No. Really. Are you insane?

Exactly how did the British "cooperate" in the Nazi extermination of Hungarian Jews?

British Zionists? What in the world are you talking about? I said the British. When they banned Jewish immigration to "palestine" during the Shoah, I don't think they had the audacity to call themselves "zionists" did they?

I ask you again:

Exactly how did the British "cooperate" in the Nazi extermination of Hungarian Jews?

To the anonymous reader who confuses god's knowlege with His consent. Imagine a time machine which allows you to go back and forth in time. You know, just to use one example, that Lee harvey Oswald will shoot and kill JFK on 11/22/63. Does that mean that you consent to it? Free will means that God has ALLOWED man to sin. If man could not sin, there is no free will.
Whatever God's omnipotence He canot make an object into a cube and a sphere at the same time. Two cannot be the same as 4. Free will means just that.
Could God on occasion overide free will? IMHO yes. Otherwise God becomes powerless to act, much like Aristotle's immovable mover or the divine clockmaker of the deists. Miracles CAN happen, as George Burns said, the last one was the 1969 Mets. But seriously, while some of the miracle stories may be true I suspect that many of them are of the same nature as George Washington chopping down the cherry tree.
Final thought: If God could be proven to a mathamatical certainty, there would be no such thing as faith. Maybe that is the idea.

In conjunction with their political creation and good friend the Mufti, co-architect of the Nazi final solution, the British banned Jewish immigration to the Holy Land and condemned the Jews of Europe to the fate of Nazi holocaust rather than facilitating their escape. At one point, Hitler yimach shemo wanted to expel the Jews rather than kill the Jews. When nations suggested to him they would not take the Jews, and largely did not care about the fate of Jews, he designed a killing program. This is on the most simplistic level and undeniable. Further exploration would require you to do some reading.

his is on the most simplistic level and undeniable. Further exploration would require you to do some reading.

The British greatly restricted Jewish immigration to Palestine in response to Arab rioting in 1936. Hungarian Jews were slaughtered in 1944-45.

The British – who were wrong in blocking immigration to Palestine in the 1930s, had very real concerns in 1942-45. They could not handle a full-scale Arab revolt in Palestine and fight the Germans in Europe and North Africa at the same time.

They also had to worry about Nazi spies and insurgents mixed in with any refugee population.

The latter reason is is why many western countries stopped immigration.

To say the British "cooperated" with the Nazis in exterminating Hungarian Jews is a lie.

It is also insane. Seek help.

Despite your insinuations, they did not take off the block on immigration later on in the war. They even sunk and killed ships full of Jews trying to sneak out of Europe to the "mandate." Furthermore, they not only allowed massive swarms of Arabs to flock into the "mandate," (hmmm, would that not provoke violence under this logic too?) but it was THE BRITISH who instigated those Arab anti-Jewish riots, and there is evidence documenting this, in order to provide a pretext for their reasoning about why they can't allow in more Jews (Oh no, we fear for their safety, we can't have violence), what you called "very real concerns"... Please.

Your rationalizations about "Nazi spies," "fullscale revolts," and other alien sightings are not only unrealistic but pathetic.

They even sunk and killed ships full of Jews trying to sneak out of Europe to the "mandate."

Got a source for this? A citation? The name of a ship?

it was THE BRITISH who instigated those Arab anti-Jewish riots,

Again, a source or two, please.

"The British greatly restricted Jewish immigration to Palestine in response to Arab rioting in 1936." Sorry Shmarya, the first restrictions were imposed in 1929, and strengthened in 1939."

"but it was THE BRITISH who instigated those Arab anti-Jewish riots, and there is evidence documenting this, in order to provide a pretext for their reasoning about why they can't allow in more Jews "

I thought it was the Mufti, who hated the British as much as he hated the Jews. The reason why Churchill, who opposed immigration restrictions in the 1930s enforced them during WWII was his fears of an Arab revolt. An this brings up a very important point. Both Kerzner and Bar-Zohar, in their biographies of Ben Gurion, note that in the early 1930s, the Mufti was willing to negotiate with the Zionists as to a political solution to the conflict. However, Ben Gurion was not very sympathetic to Arab nationalistic aspirations, and would not concede the Arabs the right to state even in Jordan. The negotiations went nowhere. Bar Zohar, who was Ben Gurion's chief of staff in the late 1950s early 1960s, is very explicit about this.

Lawrence, you do not have the full picture of that "willingness to negotiate" on Mufti's part. You would be wise to look up additional sources and consider the single solitary act in its context.

Secondly, the Mufti was put in his position of political power by the British and was actively supported by them.

"Lawrence, you do not have the full picture of that "willingness to negotiate" on Mufti's part. You would be wise to look up additional sources and consider the single solitary act in its context."

I have no illusions about the Mufti. I am putting the act in its context. However, I'm also using it to illustrate Ben Gurion's frame of mind throughout the 1930s and 1940s, in fact, up until the 1967 war, when he gave up his visions of a "Greater Israel."

"Secondly, the Mufti was put in his position of political power by the British and was actively supported by them."

If you read Collins and LaPierre's "Oh Jerusalem" you will find that the British put the Mufti in power in the hopes that his position would cause him to act more responsibly. It didn't work, and the Mufti remained as anti-British as ever. Which is why he moved to Germany during WWII and was never allowed back in Palestine again.

"However, Ben Gurion was not very sympathetic to Arab nationalistic aspirations, and would not concede the Arabs the right to state even in Jordan."

You are distorting the historical context with this. There was nothing to concede about Jordan. It was already created by Britain (then known as Transjordan). This already was an Arab state headed by King Hussein. Hussein didn't like the Mufti very much either. And there was nothing for Ben Gurion to negotiate with the Mufti about Jordan. The Mufti would have had to negotiate with Hussein if Mufti wanted his own arab state carved out of Hussein's flegling state. Ben-Gurion and likemindeds wanted to enforce partition when the Arabs declared war. They weren't very much interested in denying the Arabs declaring their own state, and in reality, they were probably incapable of this. Thank G-d the Jews were even able to survive the onslaught. It is clear the Arabs never wanted their own state if it meant the Jews would also have one. Thus why they tried so desperately to block the partition from passing in the UN and their declaration of war after it was passed. Regardless of any 'visions of 'greater Israel.'

"you will find that the British put the Mufti in power in the hopes that his position would cause him to act more responsibly."

That is about the most illogical, inane thing I have ever heard. You don't honestly believe this do you? And if you did believe it, do you really think that makes any sense? Can you say with a straight face that that would be logical even if it was truthful? Utter insanity.

To A Reader:

Read "Oh Jerusalem" as to the British and the Mufti. Read Kerzner and Bar Zohar as to Ben Gurion and Eretz Yisroel. He was willing to accept a "temporary" solution for Jordan in the 1930s, but as Bar Zohar makes very clear, he wanted it for the state of Israel.

You are the one distorting the historical record.

Btw, that should have read King Abdullah not Hussein, I sometimes get the names of those two mixed up.

To unnamed:

Just about every Jewish zionist leader wanted or at least should have wanted "Jordan" as part of the Jewish state because that was what was promised by Britain in the first place. The creation of "transjordan" was an artificial division of what was at that time "British Mandate Palestine." (If they had been going by the League of Nations and the Balfour Declaration, that gift to the Hussein family would not have happened). Interestingly, they not only created THAT Arab state called Transjordan, but they also tried to divide what was left even further into a Jewish and an Arab state.

Perhaps you're relying too much on one work for that subject. I haven't distorted anything except naming the wrong name with regards to King Abdullah, but that was accidental and corrected subsequently.

To unnamed:

Just about every Jewish zionist leader wanted or at least should have wanted "Jordan" as part of the Jewish state because that was what was promised by Britain in the first place. The creation of "transjordan" was an artificial division of what was at that time "British Mandate Palestine." (If they had been going by the League of Nations and the Balfour Declaration, that gift to the Abdullah family would not have happened). Interestingly, they not only created THAT Arab state called Transjordan, but they also tried to divide what was left even further into a Jewish and an Arab state.

Perhaps you're relying too much on one work for that subject. I haven't distorted anything except naming the wrong name with regards to King Abdullah, but that was accidental and corrected subsequently.

for people who criticize the zionists for trying to save their own people, it would be instructive to remember that they saved some other people (like satmar rebbe) while the orthodox hatzolo organization only saved orthodox.
some more hiarious orthodox hypocracy

My friend Dave writes that a believer must never argue with God. I respectfully disagree. Avraham and Moshe argued, amoung others. I am not in their league, obviously, but I will hold God accountable to His own covenant.

Having said that, I acknowlege that "the open things are for us, and the hidden things are for God." God is not Santa Claus, and if we could fathom him, he wouldn't be God.

See Jack Miles's "God: A Biography," for a reverent, yet irreverent close reading of Tanach and the "personality" of God as revealed within it. (Miles is not Jewish, but does not write from either a Christian or atheist pov).

For people speaking of "hypocrasy," the real hypocrisy is this tired canard that the 'orthodox tried to only save themselves.' That this lie is still being perpetuated is a tragedy.

Unnamed says: "Read "Oh Jerusalem" as to the British and the Mufti. Read Kerzner and Bar Zohar as to Ben Gurion and Eretz Yisroel. He was willing to accept a "temporary" solution for Jordan in the 1930s, but as Bar Zohar makes very clear, he wanted it for the state of Israel.

You are the one distorting the historical record."

First of all unnamed, perhaps you mean "Kurzman," not "Kerzner" and from what I've read of Dan Kurzman, he would definitely disagree with the bizarre comment about the mufti yimach shemo which was made by Lawrence and that I guess you support. Later I'll bring an explanation and source it for educational purposes. The bottom line is, we are talking 1947, so Transjordan has nothing to do with the UN partition except that all the Arab states surrounding wanted a piece for themselves. The Jews of the mandate had not the slightest chance of preventing Arab statehood in the arab designated portion even if they had tried. And "transjordan" was already a foregone conclusion for many years, so the comment by Lawrence is even more perplexing. As to other source requests, I will address these as well. (Unlike some posters around here)....


Reismann,

Correct me if I'm wrong, but to the best of my memory Ben Gurion gave up on the Transjordan as part of Israel plan during the mid-30es. After that he kissed British and German ass and faught tooth and nail against the Revisionsts. ALso, his vision for 'big Israel' waned in '57 after he gave back the Sinai under US pressure.

First of all, I did mean Dan Kurzman, and I was referring to his biography "Ben Gurion - Prophet of Fire." In chapter 6, (pages 197 and 198 in the Touchstone paperback edition) Kurtzman describes Ben Gurion's discussions with Musa Alami. Alami then went to the Mufti, who communicated his interest, provided he could win over two influential Syrians living in Geneva. This is all that Kurtzman says about the negotiations, other than that they came to naught. Michael Bar Zohar's biography, which I can't locate now, is much more explicit as to why the Arabs refused Ben Gurion; he wanted all of Palestine west of the Jordan, but was willing to agree to a "temporary arrangement" for Transjordan. Ben Gurion also revealed the same sentiments in a letter to his son, Amos, explaining his decision to support the Peel Commission's recommendation of partition. Kurtzman, in chapter 10 (page 234 paperback edition) notes that pubilcly at least, Ben Gurion was still demanding Transjordan as late as 1941, although he thinks that Ben Gurion took this only as a negotiating position.

With regard to Yossi Izrael, we can all take our positions as to when Ben Gurion gave up on Transjordan and argue about it ad nauseum. However, as late as 1962, Ben Gurion still wanted everything west of the Jordan, as evidenced by a newspaper interview he gave that year and cited by Tom Segev in "1949 The First Israelis." He gave up on his vision of a greater Israel only in 1967, after Israel took over the West Bank and Gaza, and he realized that Jews weren't going to make aliyah to populate it.

With regard to the Mufti's appointment in 1922, Collins and Lapierre, in "Oh Jerusalem" chapter 3 (starting at page 45 in the Pocket Books edition) note that after WWI, Husseini was a rabid enemy of Britain. In 1920, he started riots that earned him a 10 year prison sentence, but he escaped and fled to Transjordan. In 1922, the mandate political secretary persuaded high commissioner Samuel to give Husseini the position of Mufti on the grounds that "the job might convert its holder to responsibility." It didn't work, and by the mid 1930s, the Mufti had fled Palestine to avoid arrest.

L Reismann,

THX for info.
I don't know if it's a misunderstanding, but I meant Transjordan as West of the Jordan. That's what the Revisionists always wanted.

I have no idea what he wanted with the Cisjordan, but it sounds strange that he wanted it until he had it and just then gave up... In any event, a few years later -still before his death- it was populated regardless of aliya... That's also when the Aguda and Mafdal switched their positions.

Transjordan always meant and was EAST of the Jordan river.

"the mandate political secretary persuaded high commissioner Samuel to give Husseini the position of Mufti on the grounds that "the job might convert its holder to responsibility." "

Again: That is about the most illogical, inane thing I have ever heard. You don't honestly believe this do you? And if you did believe it, do you really think that makes any sense? Can you say with a straight face that that would be logical even if it was truthful? Utter insanity.

Mufti, the Arab Hitler, could be moderated by putting him in a position of authority over Arabs-of-the-Mandate who already resented arriving European Jews. Right.

He wasn't the "Arab Hitler" until after that.

He was who he was and they knew he was a dangerous, murderous criminal. The idea of "giving him a position of authority" to magically "moderate him" is as absurd as it is dishonest. This is a weak attempt to cover up for and excuse this move which was a basic antagonism against the Jews of the mandate.

From L Reismann above "In 1920, he started riots that earned him a 10 year prison sentence, but he escaped and fled to Transjordan."

Hmmm, now let's appoint him Mufti over the Moslem Arabs in the Mandate! No alterior motive there... mmm hmmmm!

And yes, TransJordan is EAST of the Jordan river, which became known as the (illegal) nation today we call Jordan. I had assumed everyone involved in this discussion knew that.

"Alami then went to the Mufti, who communicated his interest, provided he could win over two influential Syrians living in Geneva. This is all that Kurtzman says about the negotiations, other than that they came to naught. "

But before you said that the zionists refused to negotiate with the mufti and that BG "would not concede the Arabs the right to state even in Jordan" - a clear distortion, but maybe due to confusion over what constitutes "Jordan"

Reismann, listen. If BG had negotiated with the Arab Hitler he would be even worse of a villain. I'll bring some quotes from the other Kurzman book you should read, "Genesis 1948," and I will put this "willingness to negotiate" by the Mufti into proper perspective.

I also would like to know, when did these conversations which you cite occur with Alami (as in, what year), and did Ben Gurion intend for Alami to be a messenger to carry messages to the Mufti? Was he acting on behalf of the Jewish Agency with their approval and blessing, or was this unilateral under the table?

I'm not sure if the SOLITARY instance I'm aware of involves Alami and is the same as the instance you are referring to, but I know the date, and I will bring Kurzman's quote, and perhaps this involved Alami, but I don't remember and will find out.

Sorry I seem to have misplaced my book.

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