Between 1941 and 1944, attempts to rescue the Jews of Europe were meet initially with denial of their plight and ultimately with cynical evasion. The British Foreign Office and the American State Department preferred to see Jews sent to murder camps instead of rescuing them because the Allies could not figure out where to put them. Britain’s Foreign Office and the American State Department’s greatest fear was that Hitler would release the Jews and the Allies would be caught in headlights of their own hypocrisy.
In its infamous White Paper of 1939, Britain restricted Jewish emigration to the Palestine Mandate just after Kristallnacht, when the fate of Germany’s Jews was written in chards of glass. But if that were not sufficient treachery, Britain also long delayed permitting Jews to settle in temporary refugee camps in Libya. When Tito opened an escape route through Yugoslavia for transporting refugees to Libya, the British welcomed them, unless of course they happened to also be Jewish.
Even when Britain finally succumbed to political pressure to issue Jewish refugees visas for Libya, the Foreign Office suddenly could not find any ships of willing neutral powers to transport Jews.
Throughout this period, the mainstream Jewish leadership observed legal niceties and depended on the promises and good will of Franklin D. Roosevelt to assist European Jewry. With Jews prominently placed in Roosevelt’s administration, Roosevelt was trusted to do what was humanly possible to rescue the Jews of Europe. In reality, Roosevelt talked a good game but let his Department of State obfuscate and delay as each day thousands of Jews went to their deaths.
In every generation Jews have faced an intractable enemy intent on their banishment or slaughter. Today, it is Iran. And the regime has made no secret of its intention to acquire nuclear weapons for the purpose of wiping out Israel.
As its grandfathers looked to Franklin Roosevelt to shield its brethren from the existential threat, today the American Jewish community blindly puts its faith in the Obama administration for the same purpose.
Israel must act for itself, for the Obama administration will behave no differently from the Roosevelt administration. Already the Obama administration has showcased Rahm Emanuel (whom some have called “the house Jew”) to link the existential threat from Iran with progress on the Palestinian statehood issue. This while the administration continues to spend the blood of its young men and women to keep Iraq and Afghanistan from becoming what they already are — failed states. So the existential threat to Israel’s existence, Iran’s nuclear program, is to be considered in the context of creating another failed, radical Islamic state on Israel’s border.
The time for the two-state solution has passed. Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah can’t even win a decisive victory in a local election on the West Bank against Hamas, and Abbas only stays in power with support from Israel and the West.
A Palestinian state will be a Hamasistan that eyes not only Israel as rightful territory but also Jordan. After all, Jordan is a state that Britain artificially and illegally created and comprises nearly three-quarters of the original British mandate.