Tamimi's new book on Palestinian liberation

Posted in Pete's blog on Tue, 10/10/2006 - 23:44,

Apparently Azzam Tamimi is about to release a book on the Palestine liberation movement and he had a launch meeting on September 21st in Glasgow I think. I don’t know who was in the audience. A video of his talk is viewable at: http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=6997561560673766578 (corrected as a result of change of URL)
Below is an edited transcript of parts of it. Can't wait for the book
Tamimi speaks
I'd be honoured to be a member of Hamas had I been asked to be a member of Hamas. If the British, if Tony Blair wants to preserve Israel, bring Israel here if you wish.’
(in the original entry the first sentence was unintentionally misquoted as ‘I am honoured to be a member of Hamas…' see comments below)
(Tamimi doesn't explain how a nation state can be moved without its people, perhaps because it is the people he wants to be moved)
‘You cannot find one case of corruption in the whole of Hamas and Hezbollah’
(It would be nice to check that one)
'Why? Because these are god-fearing people. And they have an organisation with a very strict accountability'
(Democratic accountability? Probably not and would that 'god-fearing discipline' be mediated through some clerical authorities, by any chance?)
'It is not a crime to be supported by Iran...It is great honour for the Iranians to supporting Hezbollah…Everyone should be proud to support them... I support Hezbollah, I support Hamas (applause)...If you are afraid of America more than you are afraid of God then you will go with America to hell... If they support Israel… we have to support Hamas and Hezbollah. There is nothing in between...’
(In an account for Tony Blair asking for something through Abbas about recognizing Israel and paraphrasing Abbas conversation with Hamas' leader Ismail Haneyya)
Abbas>‘"They are willing to pressurize the Americans to end our punishment, if you accept Israel's right to exist”. Can anyone be more stupid than Tony Blair (audience laughs) How do you expect Hamas to accept to change its principles. It is impossible. It can never happen.
‘End the conflict, end the bloodshed that is something that Hamas is prepared to consider through a long term truce, ceasefire agreement.’
‘But ...there are 6 million Palestinians scattered around the world and they want to go back home to... These Polish and Ukrainian and South Africa and American and British whatever Jews can come and take our land and live there happily ever after? That can never happen.’
‘Israel is an act of injustice, one day it will have to disappear, one day it will have to go. But that does not mean this is an attitude against the Jews. We the Muslims have treated the Jews better than any other civilization or culture or country throughout history.
(loud applause) Whoever talks about the persecution of the Jews under Islam is a liar. You read the books of history.’
‘And we are willing to live with them again. If they love us so much, why bomb us, why bomb our children?’

(One might also ask the same of Hamas and Tamimi)
‘Let's unite Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Egypt, Iraq and Iran and we will have a huge country.’
(He doesn’t make clear what ideology or political structure this huge country is based on, and that might influence Jews' desire to accept his generous offer)
'But if somebody attacks us and takes our country they have to be fought they have to be resisted and they have to be driven out of the land until they surrender and accept to live in peace.'
(Surrendering is clearly surrendering Israel's right to exist
and then an interesting account of Fatah's history)

‘The founders of Fatah - Almost all of them, apart from Yassar Arafat, were members of the Brotherhood. ..The foundation of Fatah was meant (?) to the great Palestine, the whole of Palestine ...The Muslim Brotherhood- ikhwān - were not in favour of the creation of a Palestinian Liberation movement when that happened in 1957. Because the ikhwān felt that the liberation of Palestine was a big project that needed Arab intervention, or Muslim intervention, and they disagreed with the vision of the founders of Fatah, who in my opinion were right at the time. Because they disagreed with them, that embroiling Arab governments in a war with Israel because they thought that these Arab governments were not ready, were not prepared and were not willing to make war with Israel. To some extent this was proved to be right in 1967.
The founders of Fatah convinced themselves, or somebody convinced them, that an Islamic agenda was not going to be welcome by any regional or international powers, they thought a more secular, nationalist agenda was likely to more acceptable especially with regard to the Nasserite regime in Egypt...
That was the beginning of the corruption
(or eruption) of Fatah of a secular nationalist agenda and after 1967 Fatah took opened up itself...
Socialist ideas came in, Marxist, liberal whatever, all sort of ideas came in and started to derail the project of Fatah but there were also other pressures that Fatah couldn't stand
(a reference to Black September)
(Watch out for those socialists and Marxists in RESPECT, Azzam!)
‘Israel was created by the West in order to acts as a spearhead, as an advanced military base. They use it to hit whoever they want. This is the nature of Israel. Israel could not survive tomorrow morning if America stopped their aid to the Israelis. If Americans only say in public “we are nothing to do with you any more” we would see hundreds of planes and ships whatever taking the Jews back to Europe.’
(Loud laughter and applause – what a wonderful and amusing vision for the audience, hundreds of thousands of Jews leaving what was Israel.
What I always find strange about Tamimi's speeches is that he often goes on about Jews from Europe and quite often Ukraine and Poland. This can only be a reference to Jewish people fleeing Nazi or, possibly, later Russian persecution. There is no attempt to present this as rich American Jews colonising the West Bank which might be calculated to get some sympathy. No, this is all Jews, even the most oppressed throughout the world. Well done, Azzam!)

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