An Interview With Aaron Klein, Author Of “The Late Great State of Israel”

Yesterday, I got together with Aaron Klein, author of the The Late Great State of Israel: How Enemies Within and Without Threaten the Jewish Nation’s Survival, for a short interview.

What follows is the slightly edited transcript of our conversation. Enjoy!

Now a lot of Americans really don’t understand the roots of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. So, for the first couple of questions I want to talk about that. Can you give a very brief, best as you can, explanation of how the state of Israel came into being and how the conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians got started?

You can actually trace back the ideology of the state of Israel to Biblical times — but if you want to look at modern times, the idea of the establishment of the homeland for the Jews started in the late 1800s but really fortified, I think, in the minds of the international community after the Holocaust, after the Jews were absolutely defenseless.

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They didn’t have the state. They had nobody backing them in Europe and so from the ashes came these Jews of Europe to Palestine to create their own country — and then as soon as they did, you had Arab armies that invaded the Jewish state (to) destroy Israel.

A lot of people think that Israel is a modern invention, that it was established in 1948, and that there was no Jewish historic (presence) before that. That’s the whole Arab narrative — but, it’s not true.

I’m not somebody who refers to the Bible in giving interviews and writing my book. You won’t see the Bible in there — only because I try to focus on politics, terrorism, and current events — but you can take out the Bible, read Jewish history, and then walk around different parts of the country here and there to see physically for yourself where certain events took place. So the connection of Jews to Israel as their homeland goes back millennia.

Here’s another thing I want you to explain that a lot of people don’t understand: why wouldn’t Israel just allow the Palestinians to have a fully functioning state? Then there would be peace, right? That’s what people say. Explain why that wouldn’t work.

Well, first of all, the Palestinians have been offered a state many times and they’ve turned it down. For example, in August/September 2000 at the Camp David Summit brokered by the United States President Bill Clinton, the Palestinians were offered everything they ever have said they wanted: a state in the Gaza strip, the West Bank, Eastern Jerusalem.

There have been reports that the Prime Minister Ehud Barak offered dividing the Temple Mount and splitting Jerusalem. This is what the Palestinians said they wanted — and instead, Yasser Arafat, who was in charge at the time, turned down the Israeli offer without a counter offer and announced a terrorist war to destroy Israel.

…(Listen to this rhetoric) coming from dictators in the Middle East. It’s not about creating a state alongside Israel; it’s about creating a state in the place of Israel.

As soon as the Palestinians give up their hope of destroying the Jewish state, then there could be peace. Then maybe they could have a state — but until then, it just doesn’t make sense to give them a state — but, by the way, Israel has tried several times and they’ve rejected it.

Now let’s talk a little bit about the U.N.’s role in this. Tell people how the United Nations has helped create and facilitate this entire mess.

…They’ve completely fabricated a refugee crisis. What I’m talking about is that the Palestinians demand something called the Right of Return. So-called Palestinian refugees should be able to resettle in Israel and destroy it by population genocide because there would be more Arabs than Jews.

The United Nations first created that crisis and has been maintaining it almost since the founding of Israel. Now what I’m talking about is that the United Nations, until it came to the Palestinians — the whole point of United Nations refugee agencies was to find new homes for displaced people.

Yet when it came to the Palestinians, the UN completely redefined what a refugee is and also they’ve rejected every offer to resettle the Palestinian refugees somewhere else. So they’ve created this crisis, this fabricated crisis. Right now, every Palestinian leader demands the return for millions of foreign Arabs who are called Palestinians.

One of the chapters in your book is called “How the U.S. Funds Palestinian Terrorism.” That’s probably a big surprise to a lot of Americans. Can you tell us a little bit more about that?

Absolutely. When it comes to the Palestinian side, people think you have – you have two sides. You have Hamas and they’re the bad guys; they’re the terrorists. Then you have Fatah, which used to be Yasser Arafat’s party. They’re the good guys; they’re the moderates. The problem is actually that Fatah is responsible for more terrorism and more violence than Hamas. Actually they’re responsible for specifically about 50% more violence and terrorism than Hamas.

America, for years, ever since the 1990’s, and this continues until today, has been arming, training, and funding Fatah’s militias. I go into detail in the book about the various militias, but we’re giving hundreds of millions of dollars every year in training and weapons to Fatah’s militias.

The problem is that openly, many members of these Fatah militias, the majority of them actually, are also members of the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, which is Fatah’s military link. In other words, what I’m saying is that they take the American weapons, they take the American training, and then they turn around and they kill Jews.

Actually, just to give you an example, the head of 417, until about two years ago, was also a senior leader of the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades terror group and 417 is one of Fatah’s largest militias. This was a guy who coordinated security in America, who was trained by the United States, armed by the United States — and he was a member of a terror group that shot and killed Jews.

So the problem is we’re perpetuating the conflict by funding the very people who then go out and shoot at the Israelis or coordinate suicide bombings and rocket attacks against Israelis.

Now, Barack Obama seems resigned to allowing Iran to get nuclear weapons. Can you explain the danger of that — not just to Israel but to America and the world?

Iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world today. They’re allied with Hezbollah and there are indications that they’re ideologically connected to Al Qaeda. They’re certainly allied with North Korea, they’re allied with Cuba, and with Venezuela. So Iran doesn’t even need to take a missile from its own territory and shoot it at Eastern Europe or even part of the United States, which they may be able to reach in the near future. They can just give nuclear materials to a terrorist organization that can then detonate it in Washington. There wouldn’t be anything stopping them should they get the nuclear umbrella.

Also, if Iran gets nukes, it then gives a nuclear umbrella to all of Iran’s allies like Hezbollah, Hamas, and Islamic Jihad. So Iran having a nuke would be a game changer for the world. It would change the entire strategic balance of the Middle East.

Then, of course, you have Israel — which Iran is openly threatening to wipe Israel off the map — and again, Iran wouldn’t need to take a missile and shoot it into Israel to destroy the Jewish state. They could give nuclear capabilities to their proxies in Gaza, in Lebanon, and Syria and they could do the job for them.

So a nuclear Iran is a danger, not just for Israel, but for the rest of the world. Unfortunately, Iran has done an excellent job of marketing their nuclear weapons because they’re only threatening to destroy Israel.

That’s why most people in Europe, and a lot of people in the United States, believe that Iran is simply an Israeli problem. It’s not; it’s an international problem.

It would also probably cause a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, would it not?

It would absolutely cause a nuclear arms race in the Middle East and that’s another part of this. Iran is Shiite Islamic country. Should Iran get the nuke and then give a nuclear umbrella to other Shiites and to Syria, then Sunnis would need to quickly get their own nuclear capabilities. You would have Saudi Arabia racing to get nukes. There are already indications that Egypt is racing to get nuclear weapons. It would create a nuclear arms race — and I don’t know about you, but I just don’t want the unstable Middle East, powder keg that it is, to be nuclear capable.

Very understandable and for all of us, very dangerous. Now, last question — many people assume the state of Israel is always going to be there — is that a safe assumption?

My book is called The Late Great State of Israel and I’ve just got to provoke a reaction so that everybody will realize that Israel is really facing an existential crisis. By the way, that’s not just from enemies without, like Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, and Lebanon, but also from enemies within.

What I’m talking about is the Israeli government specifically. I don’t want to call them an enemy, but this is a government and a leadership that has engaged in policies year-after-year that have actually brought Israel to the point where Iranian proxies are now surrounding the country. Israel failed to win in Lebanon in 2006. They did not defeat Hamas in Gaza in December and January of last year. Then they helped legitimize Hamas. Israeli leadership has been engaging in this whole land for peace formula that hasn’t worked. Every time Israel actually hands over a territory, the terrorists take it over and fire rockets or use it to further their goal of Israel’s destruction.

….And yet the Jewish government continues to negotiate with its foes and it continues in this downward spiral of emboldening its enemies. Hopefully the new Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, will be different. I don’t think he’ll be so different when it comes to the Palestinians or when it comes to Syria, but I think he will stand up very strongly against Iran.

So ultimately, I think Israel will survive against all odds and in spite of the threats from both within and without, but I think it’s going to be a very bumpy road and people should not take the existence of Israel for granted.

Outstanding, Aaron, I really appreciate your time.

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