Hasan Salama

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For the Palestinian militant who was killed in 1979, see Ali Hassan Salameh.
Hasan Salama
حسن سلامة
Hasan Salama Portrait.jpg
Hasan Salama, 1939
Born 1913 (1913)
Qula, Ottoman Empire
Died 2 June 1948 (1948-06-03)
Ras al-Ein
Service/branch Army of the Holy War
Years of service 1936-1948
Battles/wars 1936–39 Arab revolt in Palestine
Anglo-Iraqi War
Operation ATLAS
1947–48 Civil War in Mandatory Palestine
Relations Ali Hassan Salameh (son)

Hasan Salama or Hassan Salameh (Arabic: حسن سلامة‎‎, Ḥasan Salāmah) (1913–1948) was a commander of the Palestinian Holy War Army (Jaysh al-Jihad al-Muqaddas, Arabic: جيش الجهاد المقدس) in the 1948 Palestine War along with Abd al-Qadir al-Husayni.



Salama was born in the village Qula in 1913 during the Ottoman rule over Palestine.[citation needed] He was one of the leaders of the armed Arab groups who fought against the British and the Jewish community, known at the Yishuv, in Mandatory Palestine. He participated in the violent 1933 Jaffa demonstrations during the 1933 Palestine riots, and became a leader of the 1936–39 Arab revolt in Palestine.[citation needed]

At the beginning of the Revolt in early May 1936 he was assigned to command the Lod - Ramla - Jaffa area.[citation needed] He planned and led a number of successful military operations against the British mandatory forces and the Yishuv. These operations included blowing up railway tracks and electrical power poles, severing lines of communication, and burning Yishuv orchards. In 1938 Salama was wounded when he blew up the Lod-Haifa train.[citation needed]

Kingdom of Iraq[edit]

After the Arab revolt in Palestine Salama traveled to Lebanon and Syria and joined the Mufti of Jerusalem Hajj Amin al-Husseini to Kingdom of Iraq. When he was in Syria in 1939, Salameh offered his services to the British whom he had been fighting, but they declined his offer.[1][citation needed] In Iraq Salama took a tank commander's course at the Military College. Salama supported Rashid Ali al-Gaylani, and led a group of 165 Palestinian fighters. He participated in the Rashid Ali coup of 1941 and, during the subsequent Anglo-Iraqi War.[citation needed] [2] After the pro-Axis Rashid Ali al-Gaylani government was overthrown by the British in 1941 and the subsequent meeting between Adolf Hitler and Grand Mufti al-Husseini, the Mufti arranged for Salama and other Arab fighters to be flown to Germany for military training. The Germans trained Salama to be a paratrooper.[3]

WWII & Operation Atlas[edit]

Salama was as a member of a special commando unit of the Waffen SS in Operation ATLAS, which was jointly operated by German Intelligence and Grand Mufti al-Husseini. During the night of October 6, 1944 Salama and four other commandos (three German Templars and Abdul Latif, who had edited the Mufti's Berlin radio addresses) parachuted from a German Heinkel HeS 3 airplane into Mandatory Palestine over the Jericho region in Wadi Qelt. Their equipment reportedly included explosives, submachine guns, and dynamite, radio equipment, 5,000 Pound sterling. They had some capsules of poison intended to liquidate locals believed to be collaborating with the Mandatory Authorities[4] One of the Germans and Salama evaded capture, and he took refuge in Qula, where a physician treated his injured foot.[5] The mission was intended to supply local Palestinian Arab resistance groups with resources and arms, and to direct sabotage activity primarily at Jewish (rather than British) targets.[6]

1947–1948 Palestine War[edit]

Salama with rifle in hand and on horseback during the revolt in Mandatory Palestine, 1939

In 1947 Salameh re-emerged as the second-in-command of the Army of the Holy War, a force of Palestinian Arab irregulars in the 1947–48 Civil War in Mandatory Palestine that was associated with Grand Mufti al-Husseini.[7] The force has been described as Abd al-Qadir al-Husayni's "personal" army.[8] At the meeting held in Damascus on 5 February 1948, to organize the Palestinian Field Commands, Salama was allocated the Lydda district.[9] Salama commanded the forces in Jaffa, the coastal plain, Ramle and Lod.

Salama was a member of the Palestine Arab Party.

Salama was killed by the IDF in the battle of Ras al-Ein on 2 June 1948.[10] He was the father of Ali Hassan Salameh, chief of Black September and the man chiefly responsible of the Munich massacre at the 1972 Olympics.[citation needed]


  1. ^ State of Israel's blog, June 3, 2015: http://israelsdocuments.blogspot.co.il/2015/06/british-reports-on-hassan-salameh-arab.html
  2. ^ "Israel/Palestine and the Politics of a Two-State Solution" by Thomas G. Mitchell, (London: McFarland & Co., Inc.; 2013) p. 136
  3. ^ "Mitchell, Israel/Palestine", p. 136
  4. ^ Christian Destremau, Le Moyen-Orient pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale, Perrin, 2011.
  5. ^ Nazi Palestine: The Plans for the Extermination of the Jews in Palestine by Klaus-Michael Mallmann and Martin Cuppers, tran. by Krista Smith, (Enigma Books, published in association with the United States Holocaust Museum, NY; 2010), pp. 200, 201
  6. ^ The National Archives | The Catalogue | Full Details | KV 2/401 "...The object of the 'Commando', jointly operated by German Intelligence and their protege, the Berlin-based Mufti of Jerusalem, was, through contact with local Palestinians and the supply of cash and arms, to organise local resistance activity, including sabotage. This was to be directed against Jewish rather than British targets...."
  7. ^ Albert Habib Hourani, Philip S. Khoury and Mary C. Wilson (2004-03-04). The Modern Middle East: A Reader. London: I.B. Tauris. p. 537. ISBN 978-1-86064-963-9. 
  8. ^ Ilan Pappé (1994-08-15). The Making of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1947-51. London: I.B. Tauris. p. 65. ISBN 978-1-85043-819-9. 
  9. ^ Haim Levenberg (1993-09-01). Military Preparations of the Arab Community in Palestine: 1945-1948. London: Routledge. p. 198. ISBN 0-7146-3439-5. 
  10. ^ "Alphabetical & Chronological listing of Palestinian Personalities". Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs.