69 million page views

Mufti: Arab-Nazi 'Operation Atlas': poison that could have massacred 250,000 [Oct.1944]

Reader comment on item: The Mufti of Jerusalem

Submitted by Daniella (United States), Jun 15, 2021 at 15:34

Klaus-Michael Mallmann, ‎Martin Cüppers, "Nazi Palestine: The Plans for the Extermination of the Jews in Palestine." (Enigma Books, 2010). p. 201.


The five paratroopers were briefed by el-Husseini himself, who compared Islam to National Socialism and assured them that the struggle in Palestine would help Germany. He hoped that all the Arab nations would now unite in fighting the Jews ...
He succeeded Eugen Faber as head of the Palestinian Hitler Youth in 1938, joined the Brandenburg regiment in 1940, accompanied Grobba to Iraq one year later. And since then had been part of sonderstab F. Lieutenant Werner Frank was designated as radio operator. Frank, a Palestinian-German born in Haifa, joined the Hitler Youth there in 1934... Staff sergeant Friedrich Deininger was also from Palestine... He spoke Arabic well and also joined Sonderstab F via the Brandenburg regiment.

Abdul Latif, in contrast, the fourth member of the unit, came from Jerusalem. He belonged to the Mufti's milieu and had edited the Mufti's radio addresses in Berlin. He was to establish contact with the Arab underground in Palestine. He claimed that when he had asked why three Germans were to come along on the mission, el-Husseini responded that it was to make sure the weapons would be used correctly—that is, against the Jews. The fifth participant, Hassan Salama, also managed to go into hiding. He had been a guerrilla leader near Nablus during the Arab revolt.

"The pursuit of the Red Prince." Michael Bar-Zohar, Eitan Haber ed. Zmora-Bitan, 1984. p.83.

Hassan Salameh was the head of Arab gangs in the war against the Jewish community in Israel in the 1930s and 1940s. During World War II, Salameh the Elder was trained in Germany to fight the Jews and was parachuted into Palestine to poison Tel Aviv's wells...

"The Quest for the Red Prince." Michael Bar-Zohar, Eitan Haber eds. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1983, pp. 45ff


Chapter 3: Poison the Wells

"Behind the Headlines Israeli Journalists Claim Nazi, Palestinian Group Tried to Poison Tel Aviv Water." JTA,
June 23, 1983.

Michael Bar-Zohar and Eitan Haber, two experienced Israeli journalists, make the claim in a recently published book that Palestinian Arab terrorists and Nazi agents parachuted into the Jordan valley area in November, 1944 with enough poison to kill the 250,000 Jewish residents of Tel Aviv...

The plot to murder Tel Aviv's Jewish population was hatched in Berlin by the Mufti, whose hatred of Jews and Zionism led him into an unholy alliance with the Nazis. Husseini was invited to Berlin by Hitler after a short stay in wartime Italy.

The Mufti was feted by the Nazi authorities, given a commodious residential suite in the Bellevue Palace and introduced not only to the Fuehrer but to other Nazi bigwigs — including Adolf Eichmann. Of the latter, the Mufti said: "I discovered a priceless pearl by the name of Eichmann."

Benyamin Korn: "Arab Chemical Warfare Against Jews–in 1944," Wyman Institute, March 21, 2003.

http://new.wymaninstitute.org/2003/03/arab-chemical-warfare-against-jews-in-1944/ - [http://www.wymaninstitute.org/ articles/2003-03-chemical.php]

From Berlin the Mufti made repeated Arabic-language radio broadcasts to the Middle East, brimming with hatred of Jews and appeals to the Arab masses to support Hitler. The Islamic cleric also assisted in the development of an Arab Legion of the German Army, recruited Soviet Muslims to fight alongside the Nazis, and organized a special all-Muslim division of the SS which committed so many atrocities in Yugoslavia that 38 of its officers were later tried as war criminals. As for the annihilation of European Jewry, the Mufti and his staff met with Adolf Eichmann and were briefed by senior German officials on the genocide process, of which he heartily approved. In 1943, the Mufti's pressure succeeded in scuttling a proposed prisoner exchange that would have saved 4,000 Jewish refugee children. The children were instead sent to Auschwitz.

Sabotage squads organized by the Mufti were parachuted behind Allied lines both in Europe and the Middle East. In 1944, one such squad parachuted into Mandatory Palestine. The details of their mission were first revealed in the 1983 book 'The Quest for the Red Prince' by Michael Bar-Zohar, a biographer of Ben-Gurion and Labor Party Knesset Member, and Eitan Haber, a journalist who became Yitzhak Rabin's closest aide and speechwriter when Rabin became prime minister.

According to Bar-Zohar and Haber, the five parachutists were armed with maps of Tel Aviv, canisters of "a fine white powder," and instructions from the Mufti to dump the German-made chemicals into the Tel Aviv water system. The British policemen who discovered the men, hiding in a cave in Jericho, sent the mysterious substance to a laboratory for analysis. "I remember how amazed we all were," district police commander Fayiz Bey Idrissi later recalled. "The laboratory report stated that each container held enough poison to kill 25,000 people, and there were at least ten containers."

The Mufti's attempt to unleash mass destruction through chemical warfare took place long before there were any conflicts over borders, territories, settlements, or refugees. The State of Israel did not yet even exist. The mere prospect that a Jewish state might be created in some small part of Mandatory Palestine sufficed to inspire attempted genocide.

Bergman, R., waiter, G., Alterman, S. (2002). "Freedom of choice: Where did we go wrong? Thus, the Palestinian Authority has become a production line for corruption and terrorism." Israel: Yedioth Ahronoth. p.59.

On the eve of the publication of this book, the GSS reported that the terrorist organizations were preparing a mega-attack using chemical weapons. One of the ideas that Hamas was thinking about concerned a particularly satanic plan - to poison the water wells of the State of Israel. The GSS wondered if Hamas was familiar with the history of the Palestinian national movement and are trying to recreate 'Operation Atlas.'

The "Atlas" file still lies in the archives of the British Secret Service, the MI-5. Yellowing pages... including the reports of the original agents, the encrypted telegrams, the transmissions that were intercepted and deciphered, the transcripts of the interrogations and reports summarizing the affair in 1944, in the caves of Wadi Qelt. When examining the equipment brought with them by the terrorists from Germany, they discovered, along with the wireless devices, food, weapons and gold coins, several round cans containing a substance that looked like flour. The cans were sent to the lab. The results were unequivocal: it was a substance called 'oxygen arsenic.' Extremely deadly poison. A very small amount of it, actually a very small particle of a gram, is enough to kill a person...

Bergman, R. (2019). "Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel's Targeted Assassinations." United States: Random House Publishing Group. p. 641.


... poison Tel Aviv's water supply. The poison that was to be used in Operation Atlas was arsenious Oxide and its aim, according to the participants who were interrogated violently by British intelligence, was "to inflict maximum damage" on the common enemies of the Palestinians and the Nazis— Jews, British and Americans (UK NA KV2/455)

Sharfman, D. (2014). "Palestine in the Second World War: Strategic Plans and Political Dilemmas, the Emergence of a New Middle East." United Kingdom: Sussex Academic Press. p. 86.


The National Defence Party was not used to drum up Arab support for the war effort ... Another event, organised by the Mufti in cooperation with German Intelligence, was a thankfully unsuccessful attempt to poison Tel Aviv's water supply . During "Operation Atlas", a unit of five paratroopers (three Germans and two Arabs) ...

Carol, S. (2015). "Understanding the Volatile and Dangerous Middle East: A Comprehensive Analysis." United Kingdom: iUniverse.


October 6, 1944 Again at the Mufti's urging, the German military high command, agreed to a plan to poison the water system of Tel Aviv. On October 6, 1944, a five-man German and Arab commando team parachuted into Mandatory Palestine and was to poison the Tel Aviv water system. They carried ten containers of toxin. They were apprehended by the British near Jericho, and the plot failed. A subsequent police report stated that the toxin was sufficient to kill some 250,000...

McMeekin, S. (2010). "The Berlin-Baghdad Express: The Ottoman Empire and Germany's Bid for World Power." United States: Harvard University Press. p. 362.


...not to mention a plan the Mufti himself organized in late 1944, which saw five German parachutists sent carrying 'ten containers of a toxin to poison Tel Aviv's water system..

Hitler's war against Jews continues in 'Palestine'

Richard Mather, The Jerusalem Post, March 16, 2015.


Operation Atlas was eerily prescient of contemporary fears of terrorists obtaining biological weapons. In 1944, at the behest of Husseini, Hitler ordered a five-man team to dump a lethal toxin in the water supply of Tel Aviv. Luckily, the unit, which comprised three Germans and two Arabs, was caught by police in Jericho before they had chance to execute their plan. It is estimated that a quarter of million people would have died if the plot had succeeded.

"Operation Atlas – Poisoning Tel-Aviv Residents," IsraCast, November 05, 2007


On 1941 the Arab Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini met with Adolf Hitler and discussed ways to 'solve the Jewish problem'. Three years later the Nazis and the Arabs of Palestine planned to poison the drinking water in Tel-Aviv with Arsenic poison....
Operation Atlas

A collaboration between Palestinian and Nazi parachutists was developed by al-Husseini, and On November 5th 1944, five people parachuted into the skies over Jericho from a German plane – three Germans and two Arabs – and landed in the area southeast of Jericho. The head of the operation was Kurt Wieland who was living in the German Colony in Jerusalem and was a great admirer of Hitler. Another member of the group was Hassan Salame who was from the leaders of the Palestinian Revolutionists against the British at the time. They carried with them containers with a deadly Arsenic poison - white powder which dissolves in water and can kill 25,000 people per container. They had 10 containers with them.

Some Bedouins from the area of Jericho witnessed the parachuting and informed the British police who then began searching for them. Four of the five-member group were located in a cave close to Jericho. One of the terrorists, Hassan Salame, escaped (and was later killed by the IDF in the War of Independence). After searching the area the police found bags filled with money, a radio transmitter produced in Germany, 200 gold coins, ammunition, automatic weapons, explosives, medicine, two German-Arabic dictionaries and the containers of the deadly poison.

Arsenic poison

Effects of severe exposure to arsenic include 'pins and needles' tingling in the palms, or cramps in calf muscles, Heat and irritation in throat and stomach, a garlic odor on breath, or a metallic taste in the mouth, vomiting, purging with very loose stools, neurological effects including restlessness, chronic headaches, apathy, fainting, dizziness, delirium, somnolence, convulsions and coma. Signs of long-term exposure include, development of white crescent-moon marks on the fingernails, a darkening of the skin, skin lesions, a skin rash and the appearance of small warts on the palms, soles and torso, mottled spotting.

Walton, C. (2014). "Empire of Secrets: British Intelligence, the Cold War, and the Twilight of Empire." United States: ABRAMS, Incorporated (Ignition).
[Axis Plots in the British Empire]

Operation Atlas was planned by the Abwehr together with Hitler's Arab protégé, the virulent anti-Semite Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin el Husseini, who... was exiled in Berlin, installed at the splendid Bellevue Palace where where he set himself up as a kind of Lawrence of Arabia figure, and was known as Hitler's guest in the red fez.

The gist of Operation Atlas was that in September 1944 two Arab fighters and three Abwehr agents would be dropped from a Heinkel 111 over Jericho with banknotes and ten cylinders of poison with which to poison the wells in Tel Aviv – apparently in a perverse reversal of the old conspiracy theory that Jews were responsible for poisoning wells in Europe.


Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

Follow Daniel Pipes

Facebook   Twitter   RSS   Join Mailing List

All materials by Daniel Pipes on this site: © 1968-2024 Daniel Pipes. daniel.pipes@gmail.com and @DanielPipes

Support Daniel Pipes' work with a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum.Daniel J. Pipes

(The MEF is a publicly supported, nonprofit organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tax-ID 23-774-9796, approved Apr. 27, 1998.

For more information, view our IRS letter of determination.)