I was honored to be asked to read and offer my reactions to Letters to my Palestinian Neighbor, by Yossi Klein Halevi. The book’s title attracted my attention and spurred me to read it.

The author, who also wrote Like Dreamers, tries to find a solution to the existential problem the Palestinians have caused due to their continuous stubbornness: they have never missed an opportunity to reject peace offers. He also explains his decision to leave his hometown, New York, in his twenties, and immigrate to Israel. He wanted to contribute to building the Jewish State, out of a sense of moral obligation to help build democracy in the Middle East.

I think this book is also the first time that an Israeli writer addresses the Palestinian people so directly, explaining to them the ongoing problem and trying to untangle the emotional-ideological knot that created the conflict over 72 years ago.

The “letters” in the book describe the religious and historical rights of the Jewish people to the Holy Land, just as the Quran states in ayah/verse 21 of surat Al-Maida: “O my people, enter the Holy Land which Allah has assigned to you and do not turn back [from fighting in Allah’s cause] and [thus] become losers.”

Klein Halevi also addresses Palestinians through a religious approach in an attempt to unify the three Abrahamic religions; he wants to find common ground for dialogue to make peace. I think, however, that Palestinian obstinacy will always be an obstacle on the road to peace.

I realized that the author always focuses on finding commonalities on which to base his dialogue, approaches readers by demonstrating his acceptance and sharing his spiritual experiences and dreams with them, and hoping that at some point in the future they will share these experiences together. But I think that Yossi will never be able to see these dreams come true as long as the Palestinian side is obstinate, stubborn, dishonest and dilatory. Historically, the Palestinians are well known for being nothing but traitors and back-stabbers.

The author shed light on many historical and religious facts which Palestinians must admit and acknowledge, for example:

– the destruction of the Jewish temple (The Haykal)

– the Holocaust, which resulted in 6 million Jewish victims

– The legitimate right of all religions and beliefs in the Holy Land in general and in Jerusalem in particular

–  The fact that there is a psychological barrier that prevents religious, historical, and humane dialogue for peace – a result of Palestinian obstinacy and carelessness in every single negotiation.

Finally, Palestinians don’t want a peaceful solution to their situation. They will forever be obstinate and evade it for one reason: they don’t want the financial aid showered upon them by the international community and Gulf countries to stop filling the pockets of their leaders.

I want to tell the Jewish author, Yossi Klein Halevi: stop writing letters to your Palestinian neighbor because he does not recognise you and his aim is to either burn you alive or throw you into the sea. The Palestinians don’t understand any other language but that of violence and rifles. They don’t want peace and they have never put any effort into it, so instead of reaching out to them through letters, just step aside and let the IDF deal with them in the only language they can understand: let them burn and strike their terrorist headquarters in Judea, Samaria and Gaza relentlessly.

 

The author and the Journalist

Abdullah from Kuwait

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Yossi’s team:

Thank you so much Mr. Abdullah and we will translate your words to English and send it to Yossi. We were just wondering if you have finished reading the entire book and have some critical points regarding the book itself.

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He replied:

The author Yossi is too optimistic about the possibility of reaching the stage of coexistence with the Palestinians. This is exactly where we differ, because we, the people of Kuwait, have had a terrible experience with Palestinians, which has confirmed their treacherous and betraying nature. It has proven to us that Palestinians have no credibility or honesty whatsoever, and that no one can ever be safe around them.

Kuwait has hosted Palestinians since the 1950s. It offered them a decent life, jobs, high salaries, education, free healthcare, and granted many of them Kuwaiti citizenship; they lived a luxurious lifestyle. There were around 500,000 Palestinian residents.

Kuwait sponsored the establishment of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO).

In 1990 Kuwait city was occupied by Saddam’s Iraqi forces and instead of standing with Kuwait, Palestinians supported the Iraqi occupier. They forgot Kuwait.

So, I wish the author Yossi would take our experience into account and realize the truth about Palestinians: Instead of sending more letters to his Palestinian neighbor, I wish he would send them more bombs and missiles.

Thank you

Abdullah

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I hope that Yossi realizes the one and only fact: wherever Palestinians are – they spread terror, chaos, crime and rebellion: look what they did in Jordan to the point that King Hussein took revenge on them in what we know as “Black September”; What are they doing in their camps in Lebanon and Syria; they destroyed Tunisia and Egypt; they spread terror in Italy, Argentina and Germany.

I wish the author remembered a couple of Palestinian terror attacks:

– The massacre of Israeli athletes in Munich in the 1970s.

– the hijacking of the Air France airplane and the Israeli raid on Entebbe.

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Our team’s responses:

Our greetings, Mr. Abdullah

We would like to thank you again for the time and the effort you dedicated to write to us. To be honest with you, the fact that I am an Israeli Jew and not Arab doesn’t mean that I am ignorant about what is going on around me. I understand why you are angry at Palestinians based on what happened in Kuwait during the Gulf War.

I contacted you after having watched several of your clips online, in which you have expressed your friendly and courageous attitude towards Israel. These clips drew my attention and made me curious to know your thoughts regarding the book that we are promoting, especially since you seem like a critical objective intellectual who thinks outside the box.

We think that a response to the specific topics discussed in the book by someone like you will encourage more people to read and send us their thoughts.

We will translate everything you have written to us for Yossi and send you his thoughts.

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He replied:

Thank you, dear Michal, I appreciate your efforts and I am honored to cooperate with you. We are brothers and cousins.

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Michal’s response:

We will definitely send Yossi because we cannot respond on his behalf, but I would like to share with you my own personal view regarding what you wrote.

I understand the reasons behind your speech. I agree with you that the Palestinian have rejected every offer and, of course, I am very much aware of the terror attack that they commit against Jews because I live in Israel. Up until ten years ago, I used to vote for left-wing parties, but then I went through some transformation and my thoughts changed. I learned more about my religion and started observing some of its traditions and commandments, even though I grew up in a secular family that doesn’t believe in God, because of the heinous crimes committed by the Nazi regime, which resulted in the systematic murder of 6 million Jews, including my own family.

As you see, I don’t follow the stream lightly. I change based on my own thoughts and experiences.

My closest friend is an Arab Muslim woman from Haifa. The team I am working with consists of Arabs and Palestinians. One of my colleagues, who also translated the book, is a Palestinian, so we cannot generalize and say that all Palestinians are terrorists, murderers and betrayers.

We, ourselves, are against generalization because we are fighting against the twisted preconceptions against Jews and Israelis that portray Israel as a state of terror and warmongering.

Again, I do not deny what the Palestinians did during the invasion of Kuwait. But, just like there were those who were praising Saddam, there were many others, especially the ones living in Kuwait, who opposed him and paid the price because of the ones who did support him.

Based on my own knowledge, there were a lot of Palestinian educators who contributed to the education system in the Gulf countries in general, and in Kuwait in particular. There were also Palestinian engineers who worked in the oil refineries – the field that contributed so much to boosting the economy of Kuwait. There were also many Palestinian businessmen in Kuwait, such us Mr. Ibrahim Dabdoub (https://www.weforum.org/people/ibrahim-s-dabdoub), who has contributed a lot to the Kuwaiti banking sector.

There is good and bad in every community.

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He replied:

The Palestinian translators who work with you never lived under occupation or went through invasion, so they’re not aware of what they’re talking about: the treason and betrayal of Palestinians. Generalizing is only acceptable when talking about Palestinians. I don’t care about the 1% of Palestinians who were against the invasion of Saddam; they don’t represent anything.

I am an engineer in charge of the security of oil refineries and I can tell you about my own experience: the Palestinians who were working with us at that time used to take bribes from Iraqis in order to snitch on Kuwaiti soldiers. They caused the execution of many of our soldiers. Palestinians used to help Iraqis in the checkpoints. They stole Kuwait’s archives of health, education, and oil, along with archaeological antiquities and entire libraries and transferred them to Iraq. I lived under Iraqi invasion for 7 months and I saw Palestinian treason with my own eyes.

There were Palestinians to whom Kuwait gave citizenship, such as Shafiq Nadhem Alghabra, Muhammad Hadid, Khaled Al-Hassan, Naim Shheibar, Muhammed Alborno, Othman Abu Sidou, Said Sabeitah, Mustafa Qadoumy, Khaled Alkalouty, and many others. But, in the end, they all cooperated with Iraq against Kuwait.

Only one who has lived with Palestinians really knows them. Look at what they’ve done in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Tunisia.

Palestinians are the Arab Nazis and I wish the IDF could wipe them all out of Gaza, Samaria and Judea.

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Our team’s responses:

Mr. Abdullah,

My words are based on my own knowledge. I also have some Palestinian friends who lived in Kuwait at that time and completely opposed Saddam’s actions. One of those friends, Haytham, who currently resides in the U.S., and whose family owned property in Kuwait, was kicked out of Kuwait with his entire family. Their property was confiscated for no reason other than them being Palestinians. In no way did they ever support Saddam’s invasion.

There is something that I would like you to understand, and I have a feeling that Yossi would tell you the same after he reads your response: you must never equate anybody with Nazis. History has not witnessed a catastrophe such as the Holocaust – both before and after it was committed. An entire group of people was persecuted and massacred for no other reason than being Jewish.

Palestinian violence is not justified, and terror in general is wrong, but you simply cannot compare what the Nazis did, both in the systematic manner and the extent of the atrocities, to what the Palestinians do. If you respect what Jews went through you should respect this point and never compare Nazis with anybody.

I am saddened to read the last part of your message, because the one who wishes annihilation to one group of people would end up wishing the same upon me if I did not agree with him. As a Jewish woman whose ancestors witnessed the atrocities of the Holocaust, I know the catastrophic outcome of such speech.

I would like to continue our conversation without hostility and hatred taking over our discussion.

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Last messages to Michal on messenger:

 

I don’t deny the Holocaust. On the contrary: I stand firmly against those who deny it.

Michal, You’re Palestinian more than Palestinians themselves.

Have you forgotten the murder of Israeli athletes in Munich, orchestrated by Abu Nidal’s gang and the hijacking of Israelis on the way to Entebbe’s airport?

Read the history correctly!

Palestinian brutality is unprecedented when it comes to crime. This is my opinion

and you must respect it, just as I respect yours.

I am more a Jew than you are, but I don’t believe that Palestinians deserve to live. I did not incite to murder Jews, pay attention to my words!

This Facebook account of yours is probably owned by a Palestinian who was kicked out of Kuwait and has a lot of hatred towards it. He’s using your name to attack Kuwait, and if you’re going to allow him to disrespect my country, I will have to block you.

The worst disease that has plagued both Islamic and Arab nations was an illusion, a lie that we invented and believed for 72 years, although it doesn’t exist. The greatest lie ever – the Palestinian case!

The Jewish people returned to their promised Holy Land (read ayah 21 from Surat Al-Maida).

Palestinians must remain in their natural environment – camps – since their grandparents sold their lands – Jewish holy lands – to Jews before 1948.

 

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To read Yossi’s response check this link