Ahmadinejad...Liar, Hypocrite, and/or Arabs'
by Gerald A. Honigman
Upon the death of Islam's
Prophet, Muhammad, in the early 7th century C.E., the armies of his caliphal
successors burst out of the Arabian Peninsula and spread out in all
Over the next centuries--and continuing to this
very day--Arab colonialism and imperial conquests would either directly or
indirectly forcibly Arabize millions of native non-Arab peoples.
As just a few examples of this lingering ordeal,
in Syria, Kurdish children are currently forced to sing songs praising their
"Arab" identity; millions of Black Africans (not only Sudanese) have been
killed, enslaved, and so forth in the name of the Arab nation; prominent Copts
in Egypt have advised Israel to consent to the same Arabization they have been
forced to undergo in order to "be accepted"; Berbers have been slaughtered for
asserting their own cultural identity; etc. and so forth. Get the picture?
But before we leave this thought, keep one other
key example in mind...
Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has
recently called on Europe to make a place for Israel's Jews. He, like Arab and
other Iranian leaders, calls for Israel's destruction and actively
participates--via supplying arms and support to Arab terror organizations and
states--in trying to accomplish this even before Iran becomes nuclear.
It seems that the Iranians--who at least partially
jumped on the Arab bandwagon centuries ago--have also bought into the Arab
delusion...at least when it fits their own needs.
So, Ahmadinejad simply ignores one half of
Israel's 6 million Jews who know nothing of "Europe" as a home. They are from
Jewish refugee families who fled what Arabs refer to as "purely Arab patrimony"
where, despite Arab claims of tolerance, they were commonly known as kilab
yahud--Jew dogs--and treated as such. Over a million more of these Jews who
fled Arab murder and subjugation live in France, the Americas, and elsewhere as
Iran itself, Muslim but not Arab, was the
home of over 6,000 Jews who now live in New York. Thousands of other Iranian
Jews fled elsewhere.
Iran's Jewish community dates back over 2,500
years--at least since the days when Cyrus liberated them from Babylonian
captivity. The Jewish holiday of Purim, recorded in the Bible's Book of
Esther, is about this allegedly "European" Jewish community.
Iran supported Judaea's fight for independence
against Rome, and on the eve of the Arab conquest itself in the 7th century
C.E., an army of tens of thousands of Jews was recorded to have allied
themselves to Persian armies fighting the hated Byzantines.
Today, with Jews intimidated, tried as spies for
Israel, and the like, there are only some 20,000 Jews remaining in Iran itself.
Most of the 100,000 present earlier last century are now in Israel. Indeed,
Israel's president, Moshe Katsav, was born in Iran.
Lots more could be elaborated upon here on this
subject. Suffice it to say that Ahmadinejad and Iran have simply used the
Arab (and others') ploy of denial to further their own national interests.
So, he sees no Jews native to the region in his midst. They're all simply
European transplants. The Tunisian Jewish professor, the Sorbonne's
Albert Memmi, is an important source for all of this. His book, Jews and
Arabs, is must reading for anyone wanting to get a sense of balance here.
But I've jumped ahead a bit, so let's return now to how this lie has been
In the wake of their own imperial conquests and
colonialism of the region, the very definition of "Arab" appears to have been
deliberately muddied so to allow for the Arabs to claim the whole region as
"purely Arab patrimony." So, the children of Arab fathers, all Arabic speakers,
and any who simply wish for convenience sake--i.e. among other
things, to escape taxation and subjugation--to identify as such are as
"Arab" as the Arabs who conquered and colonized them in the first place from the
We thus currently speak of twenty-one "Arab "
states--where this identity is professed in constitutions and so forth--allowing
Arabs to live their lie and delusion. The 22nd (and second, not first,
within the original borders of the Palestinian Mandate as Great Britain received
it on April 25, 1920...Jordan emerging on some 80% of it after 1922) expects to
be born soon...and on the ashes of the Jews' sole, microscopic state--not as its
Before the age of nationalism, where one empire
after the other (including the Arabs' own caliphal varieties) absorbed numerous
different peoples, this had an imperfect unifying effect.
So, with Islam as its main unifying and driving
force, Arabs could get non-Arabs like the great Kurdish leader, Salah al-Din, to
jump on their bandwagon in furthering the Dar ul-Islam. Recall
that these are the people whom Arabs would later massacre, gas, culturally
subjugate, and so forth--now, fellow Muslims, mind you--for daring to
assert their own identities and demand rights as such. Before Saddam's gassings
in "Arab" Iraq, the Kurdish nationalist, Ismet Cherif Vanly, wrote The
Syrian (Arab) 'Mein Kampf' Against The Kurds (Amsterdam 1968). The
title of the book says it all.
With the 19th century reawakening of dormant
ethnic/national identities accompanying the beginning of the collapse of major
empires, Arabs saw themselves as sole heirs to most of a region ruled largely by
the Turks for the previous five centuries. While diplomats would soon speak of
Arabia for the Arabians, Judea for the Jews, Armenia for Armenians, and
Kurdistan for Kurds, in Arab eyes, there could be no division of "their"
pie. There was no justice in the region other than Arab. And in relation to our
discussion about Iran and Israel, it had all started this way...
The Arabian general, Khaled ibn al-Walid,
conquered the land of Israel in 634 C.E. from the Byzantines, and not long
afterwards, Abu Musa al-Ash'ari led the invasion of Iran from Basra via its
current, oil-rich, southwestern Khuzestan province.
By Roman times, the land of Israel had been
renamed Judaea. After the first major revolt of the Jews for independence
against their mighty conquerors, Rome issued Iudaea Capta coins, found
in museums all over the world today. After the second revolt in 133-135
C.E., Hadrian got fed up with the Jews' persistence (and Roman losses) and
tried to stamp out their hopes for freedom once and for all. He renamed the
land itself after the Jews' historic enemies, the Aegean or eastern
Mediterranean, non-Semitic Philistines--Syria Palaestina.
Like vultures wanting their share of the kill,
some neighboring Arabs joined the Romans in their assault on the Jews.
Arabs like to claim that they were the
aboriginals in the land. In reality, while the coastal region was sometimes
identified by the Greeks with Philistine invaders, there was no country or
nation known as "Palestine"...ever.
The land was known as Judaea and its inhabitants
were Judaeans... Jews.
Tacitus and Dio Cassius were famous Roman historians who wrote extensively about
Judaea's attempt to remain
free. They lived and wrote
during, or not long after, the two major revolts of the Jews mentioned above and
make no mention of the land being called "Palestine" or its people
"Palestinians." And as can be seen below, they knew the differences between Jews
and Arabs as well.
Listen to this quote from Vol. II, Book V, The Works of
appointed by his father to complete the subjugation of Judaea... he commanded three
legions in Judaea itself... To these he
added the twelfth from Syria and the third and
twenty-second from Alexandria... amongst his allies
were a band of Arabs, formidable in themselves and harboring towards the Jews
the bitter animosity usually subsisting between neighboring
So much for Arab "aboriginals"...And remember that it was Ahmadinejad's Iran
which was the chief ally of the Jews in their fight for freedom against
Back to the future...
we have seen, along with the Arab colonialization of Judaea/"Palestine"
(along with many other places), Arabs spread into Iran as well. For
Arabs, imperialism and colonialism are only nasty when they themselves
aren't doing such things.
While Khuzestan traded back and forth between Arab and Iranian rule, it became
basically linked to Iran despite repeated Arab invasions over the centuries from
southern Iraq. But, despite this link, Khuzestan, according to the
Encyclopedia Iranica (p.216), became "extensively Arabized" to the
point that in Safavid times (16th-18th centuries C.E.) the province was
known as Arabistan.
The Arabs have long remembered this, and Iraqi Arabs under Saddam's
banner launched the long Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s that was largely fought
over this oil-rich and strategically important area.
Earlier, to deal with this problem, Iran ruthlessly suppressed any
manifestations of Arab nationalism. By the early 20th century, a proposal
had been put forward to even outlaw the Arabic language.
Now think about this a minute...
Like in Iran, Arabs entered the land of Israel/Judaea/Palestine as settlers,
imperial conquerors, and colonizers. While this fact of life is true for others
as well, Arabs only see in others what they themselves have truly
perfected as they conquered and forcibly Arabized over six million square miles
of mostly other, non-Arab peoples' lands.
As for their claim to "Palestine," when the United Nations
Relief Works Agency--UNRWA--was set up to assist Arab refugees (after a half
dozen Arab states invaded a nascent Israel in 1948 to nip it in the bud and
their attempt backfired), the very word refugee had to be redefined to assist
those allegedly "native" people.
So many Arabs
were recent arrivals themselves into the Palestinian Mandate that UNRWA had to
adjust the very definition of "refugee" from its prior meaning of persons
normally and traditionally resident to those who lived in the Mandate
for a minimum of only two years prior to 1948.
Earlier, the League of Nations Permanent
Mandates Commission documented scores of thousands of Arabs pouring into the
land from surrounding countries to take advantage of the economic development
going on because of the influx of Jewish capital. Many more entered under cover
of darkness and were simply never recorded. And many others had entered just a
bit earlier than that with the conquests of Egypt's Muhammad Ali and Ibrahim
Pasha in the latter 19th century.
Arab settlers and
Now, we're all familiar with the Arab take
on this, but how do Iranians like Ahmadinejad see the picture?
Well, at any hint of unrest in
Khuzestan/Arabistan, Iran is quick to act in its own national interests--as it
So, for example, when Khuzestani Arabs of
the Nahda (Renaissance) movement bombed Iranian targets not long ago in
Ahwaz and elsewhere, Iran arrested thousands of Arabs and set out to "fix" the
problem by any means necessary.
While this is still going on as I write,
keep in mind that Iranians are doing likewise to Kurds, Baluchis, and others as
well who dare to assert their own political rights. Thousands have been killed
as a result over the years in the name of Iranian nationalism.
So, this all begs the
Why, in Ahmadinejad's eyes, is Israel
supposed to consent to national suicide so Arab colonizers can have their
22nd state and second one in Palestine at the expense of
the Jews' one, but Arabistan should not gain independence from Iran as
What's good for the goose is good for the
Moving on to another related issue, with
Iran's continuously blatant threats to Israel's very existence,
reality is that Iran is indeed playing with fire in its baiting of the
Ahmadinejad & Co. may calculate
that Iran can absorb what might be coming and which they are indeed
asking for by threatening the Jew of the Nations.
But all peoples must take such
threats seriously. And, in light of frequent past experiences over the
millennia(Iran's and other Holocaust-deniers notwithstanding), especially
A few words of advice,
If Israel is forced to act, this cannot be
done half way. Tit for tat won't work. The location of the Iranian
nuclear facilities and its massive armed forces are just part of the
Iran's Hizbullah proxies in southern
Lebanon--armed to the teeth with tens of thousands of rockets and such courtesy
of Iran and Syria--must be hit massively and
simultaneously a la June 5th, 1967 when Israel took out multiple Arab
air forces and such. The murderous, rejectionist leadership must be targeted
there as well.
If this is not done, at the very least all
of northern Israel will pay an unacceptable price.
None of this should be taken lightly...and
it isn't, I'm sure.
One could hope that saner minds in Iran
will take control of the situation.
Not that long ago, after all, during the
days of the late Shah, Jews had it much better. This was true for much
of Iran's history after the spread of Islam...ups and downs, often
according to whether the mullahs or the shahs were calling the
While Israel's close relationship with the Pahlavis may have complicated matters
(but why shouldn't Israel had sought friends in the region...the Shah was no
more despotic than anything the Arabs or Iran's own mullahs have to offer?),
there still might be hope for a better tomorrow considering the Jews' millennial
relationship with the Iranian people.
Yet Israel can't simply wait for "hope" to materialize into something
In the meantime, while Ahmadinejad and others try to cover their own
rejectionist hatred with lame excuses, please remember them for the liars,
hypocrites, and/or Arab stooges that they are.
And when you hear Iranians speak of "Palestine," answer them with
Gerald A. Honigman is a Florida educator who has done extensive
doctoral studies in Middle Eastern Affairs. He has created and
conducted counter-propaganda programs for college youth, has
lectured on numerous university campuses and other platforms,
and has publicly debated many anti-Israel spokesmen. His
articles and op-eds have been published in hundreds of
newspapers, magazines, academic journals and websites around the
world. His official website is:
Our special thanks to the author for submitting this article.
A. G. S.