Al-Ḥājj Muḥammad Amīn al-Ḥusaynī, Mufti of Jerusalem : the Palestine years, 1921-1937 / by Taysir Jbara.
Haj Am(')in Al-Husayn(')i, Muft(')i of Jerusalem (1921-1937), played an instrumental role in the history of Palestine during the British Mandate. He served in the Ottoman Army until 1916; thereafter, he aided Am(')ir Faysal during the Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War I. After the Balfour Declaration of 1917, Haj Am(')in discovered that the British had no intention of offering the Palestinians self-determination and thus, he turned against the British. The British sentenced him in absentia for this part in anti-Zionist demonstrations in 1920. However, he was pardoned a year later by Herbert Samuel, a prominent British Jew who had meanwhile been appointed British High Commissioner for Palestine. Amin replaced his brother, Kamil Al-Husayn(')i, who had served as Grand Muft(')i until his death in 1921. Since an Al-Husayn(')i had held the office of the Muft(')i for several generations, it was expected that Am(')in would succeed his brother. Samuel used his influence in the election to appoint Haj Am(')in as Muft(')i of Jerusalem. He did this in order to silence the Husayn(')i family and to secure their cooperation with the British. Am(')in's Islamic activities in Palestine increased gradually, especially after the "Al-Buraq" or Wailing Wall incident of 1929. Following the great increase in Jewish immigration to Palestine in the 1930's with the advent of Hitler in Germany, Haj Am(')in began to promote both anti-British and anti-Zionist activities to awaken the Palestinian Arabs to the danger of losing their native land and to alert the Muslim world leaders concerning Zionist threats to sacred Muslim shrines. The Muft(')i's Islamic activities both inside and outside of Palestine (mainly in India, Jordan, Syria, and Iraq) gave concern to the British and indeed caused the British to reconsider their supportive role to Zionism especially in view of the approaching World War II. This heightened awareness of the Palestinian Arab community to the danger posed by Zionism, a form of Jewish nationalism, must be considered the first step for present-day Palestinian Arab nationalism.
Record last modified: 2018-05-22 11:46:00
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