Monday, October 29, 2007

October 29, 1947: Egypt refuses Jewish help on cholera epidemic

Starting in September, 1947, a devastating cholera epidemic tore through Egypt. By the time it was done some 20,000 Egyptians were killed.

Neighboring Palestinian Jews followed the story closely, with daily Palestine Post articles like this one:

Soon after the outbreak, in late September, Hebrew University offered to help Egypt, saying that it could manufacture tens of thousands of vaccines immediately and, with help, millions within 4-6 weeks. Had Egypt taken this offer they could have turned the tide by early November.

Hadassah Hospital also formally offered to help the Egyptians.

But, of course, Egypt couldn't handle the indignity of being helped by lowly Jews:

In December, rumors started circulating in Egypt - not that the Jews offered to help stop the epidemic but that they had caused it by poisoning the water supply! In 1948, the Arab Higher Committee formally complained to the UN that the Jews were behind the epidemic

As recently as 2003, Egypt's Al Ahram Weekly has repeated the charges that Jews were responsible for the cholera epidemic, not only in Egypt but the smaller outbreak in Syria that started in December, 1947 (along with a host of other supposed crimes involving WMD.) "Evidence" cited is that the Syrians affected were near the Palestine border - while ignoring the fact that the Arab armies were coordinating to attack at borders of Palestine in that time period.