Mohammed Amin al-Husseini (c. 1897 – 4 July 1974) was a Palestinian Arab nationalist and Muslim leader in Mandatory Palestine.
Al-Husseini was the scion of a family of Jerusalemite notables, who trace their origins to eponymous grandson of Muhammad. After receiving an education in Islamic, Ottoman and Catholic schools, he went on to serve in the Ottoman army in World War I. At war’s end he stationed himself in Damascus as a supporter of the Arab Kingdom of Syria. Following the fiasco of the Franco-Syrian War and the collapse of Arab Hashemite rule in Damascus, his early position on pan-Arabism shifted to a form of local nationalism for Palestinian Arabs and he moved back to Jerusalem. From as early as 1920 he actively opposed Zionism, and was implicated as a leader of the 1920 Nebi Musa riots. Al-Husseini was sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment but was pardoned by the British. In 1921 the British High Commissioner appointed him Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, a position he used to promote Islam while rallying a non-confessional Arab nationalism against Zionism. During the period 1921-36 he was considered an important ally by the British Mandatory authorities.
His opposition to the British peaked during the 1936–39 Arab revolt in Palestine. In 1937, evading an arrest warrant, he fled Palestine and took refuge successively in the French Mandate of Lebanon and the Kingdom of Iraq, until he established himself in Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. During World War II he collaborated with both Italy and Germany by making propagandistic radio broadcasts and by helping the Nazis recruit Bosnian Muslims for the Waffen-SS (on the ground that they shared four principles: family, order, the leader and faith). Also, as he told the recruits, Germany had not colonized any Arab country while Russia and England had. On meeting Adolf Hitler he requested backing for Arab independence and support in opposing the establishment in Palestine of a Jewish national home. At the war’s end he came under French protection, and then sought refuge in Cairo to avoid prosecution.
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Bible reference(s): Esther 3:6, Esther 3:8-9, Esther 3:11, Esther 3:13, Esther 4:8, Esther 7:3-4, Esther 8:6, Psalm 83:4, Psalm 137:7, Isaiah 43:2, Jeremiah 5:18, Jeremiah 30:11, Jeremiah 30:7, Jeremiah 31:36, Jeremiah 46:28, Jeremiah 48:2, Zechariah 13:7-8, Matthew 27:25
Source: This article uses material from the Wikipedia article “Amin al-Husseini,” which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.
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