There are no ‘Munich terrorists’ in Hamman Chott cemetery

tunis plinth

The waters have become so muddied among the slurs and smears thrown by an increasingly desperate Establishment at Jeremy Corbyn about his 2014 visit to a Tunisian cemetery that few have looked at one of the most basic facts of the matter.

While Corbyn has said consistently that he was at the cemetery – along with other delegates to the peace conference he was attending – in memory of a large number of people killed in Tunis by an Israeli airstrike, the Daily Mail and its anti-Corbyn fellow-travellers have claimed Corbyn laid a wreath at the graves of ‘Munich terrorists’ in the same cemetery.

But there are no ‘Munich terrorists’ in the same cemetery.

Hamman Chott cemetery is the Palestinian national cemetery in Tunisia, where all Palestinians not allowed to be repatriated by Israel are buried.

Salah Khalaf, whose grave is one of those at the centre of the Mail smear, was the Palestinian Liberation Organisation’s number two after its then-leader Yasser Arafat. Khalaf was assassinated in Tunis in 1991 and as a prominent Palestinian his grave is in a prime location in the cemetery. Khalaf was accused by Israel of being linked to Black September but always denied it.

Similarly, Atef Bseiso, the PLO’s liaison officer with foreign intelligence agencies, was assassinated in Paris in 1992. He was a regular contact of the CIA and other agencies and although at the time some claimed he was assassinated by the Israelis, many now believe he was killed by another Palestinian faction because it objected to his discussions with the US and Israel about peace.

The terrorists who carried out the Munich attack were killed in Munich.* None is buried in Hamman Chatt.

JC did not lay wreath on the grave of either Bseiso or Khalaf. He was at a Palestine conference in Tunis sponsored by Tunisian president. Delegates took a wreath from conference to cemetery to pay respects to the Palestinian struggle and those killed in the 1985 Israeli bombing raid – people who included Palestinian and Tunisian civilians.

The Palestinians shown attending the graves in the Mail’s photographs are high ranking Palestinian Authority (PA) officials based in Ramallah. The PA headquarters in Ramallah was recently visited by a delegation of Labour Friends of Israel members during a trip to Israel.

Those members include right-wing Labour MP and ‘forgetful‘ arch-Corbyn critic Louise Ellman.

The attempts to create a smear from the visit are politically-driven nonsense.

*Correction: Three of the Munich terrorists were captured alive and released in a prisoner exchange only a month later. Two are widely believed to have been killed by Israeli operatives and a third was alive and in hiding at the end of the 20th century. None is buried in Tunis.

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  1. Thank you for this. I agree with David Schneider, it would help move on if Corbyn now made a clear statement condemning the Munich massacre. Because if he went as a man of peace to condemn all terrorist acts, he has to make it clear he condemns that one too.

    1. No. Absolutely not. That is another ridiculous trap that Corbyn is too canny to fall into. As soon as he condemns one specific terrorist attack, he will be accused of supporting every terrorist attack he hasn’t expressly condemned.

      You’re as bad as the people who claimed that Corbyn’s condemnation of all Irish terrorism meant he was not condemning IRA terrorism.

      1. I think you are wrong. I recognise that the smug glib and patronising remarks from those who seek to destroy him are largely waffle and that whatever he says or does will never be suffcient for them, but while most people will see through much of the smears, this process is designed to cause doubts in the minds of those whose votes may be crucial. I have never for one moment doubted Corbyns integrity since I nominated him for support in the leadership election at our CLP, but however grinding this crap may be, what you and I think is largely irrelevant. With so little MSM in his favour It is critical that Corbyn makes clear and keeps making clear that his position is unambiguous and that the central tenets of whatever case is put against him this week, last week or the next are based on a false premise. I think this new interview with Ch4 for all the grinding repetition of the interviewer is the type of critical response that will keep things moving forward https://youtu.be/K-95TdSUG_k

  2. Geat for the SkwawkB community to have these “facts” put right.

    However, as I write, MSM outlets like The Guardian online, aided and abetted by Margaret Hodge, are still presenting an appallingly malicious and deceitful picture on their front pages (see the SB ” … blistering response to Netanyahu … ” thread).

    I do hope that somebody, with more clout and know how than me, may be able to find a way of tackling them about this.

  3. Could you cite a source for this? I’d love to be able to point out a credible source to those smearing JC

  4. This is Deja Vu, I’m sure the exact same issue appeared a year or so with the exact same outcome….it’s fake news.

    1. Yes, during the general election in the Sunday Times and then the Daily Telegraph.

  5. Of the eight terrorist invoved with the Munich Massacare. Five were killed and their bodies claimed by and burried in Libya. Three survived and were later exchanged for other hostages. Of these two later died in Lebanon of “disputed” causes and the whereabouts of the third is unknown but if alive he is believed to be hiding in Africa. It seems that none of the Black September terrorist who were engaged in the Munich Massacer of 1972 are burried in Tunisia.
    All of that information is obtainable from Wikipedia and can no doubt be quickly verified having been gleened from the many books on the subject.
    As it turns out the whole story is not only a lie but a bloody poor one. Shame on all those idiots who went along with it. Pants on fire guys.

    1. This correct according to quite a few sources.

      The Munich 1972 terrorists that were killed by German security forces were all buried in Sidi Munaidess Cemetery in Libya

  6. Do we know anyone that can read the inscription on that tomb stone?

    That photograph with an accurate translation could go viral.

  7. The terrorists who were killed during the attack were given to Libya and are buried in Sidi Munaidess Cemetary according to Simon Reeve’s book:Reeve, Simon (2000). One day in September : the full story of the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre and the Israeli revenge operation “Wrath of God” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afif_Ahmed_Hamid

  8. You’d think a government minister would be able to tell truth from fiction Maybe he’s so intent on smearing JC that truth doesn’t matter. That’s one of the first signs of corruption in any government. Truth is the first casualty

  9. Good reporting Skwawkbox.

    MSM has declining readership and audiences and I note BBC even has the gall to complain and whinge they are being undermined by those criticising their reporting. With BBCs huge domestic and international resources they cannot/wont provide accurate and balanced info yet they cannot or refuse to see they are undermining themselves and driving readers and watchers away with their poor and biased reporting!

  10. To clarify. JC stated to Sky News: “A wreath was indeed laid by some of those who attended the conference for those who were killed in Paris in 1992. I was present when it was laid. I don’t think I was actually involved in it.” The reference to those killed in Paris is understood to relate to Atef Bseiso, mentioned by Skwawkbox above. What Skwawkbox does not say is that Atef Bseiso was at one time a member of the Black September group (as were the terrorists who killed the Israeli athletes in Munich) and it is believed by some that he was one of the organisers behind the Munich attack. Others think that he was not connected in any way to the Munich terrorists. JC may want to clarify exactly who the wreath was laid for, ie was it for Atef Bseiso. If it was I suspect JC believed the group were honouring the work Bseiso did for the PLO and the Palestinian movement in general and was not aware of, or does not believe, the possible link with the Munich terrorists.

    1. Very helpful clarification Iain – thanks. The letter of complaint to the Guardian that I’ve just drafted is now on hold until we have a better idea of who the wreath was laid for.

  11. I might be a bit dense but now in completely confused. The Munich 5 so called were according to AAV buried in Libya and not in Tunisia or Munich. Someone please spell this out to me clearly so j can argue the case if need be.

    1. The problem is that as the original allegation that Corbyn attended a wreath laying for the Munich terrorists has been shown to be a complete fabrication because those terrorists are not burried in Tunisa those who manufactured the lie like all liars are changing their story. They seem to have forgotten about the actual Munich terrorists and are now saying that some other bloke who may or may not have had something to do with Munich (they cant say exactly what) is burried in Tunis in a grave that was not attended by Corbyn on a day that he wasn’t. there whem a wreath was laid on it.
      Don’t expect things to get any clearer or less contradictory. Having been found out they will just move on to something else.

      1. There is and never was any truthful facts about this , the whole point was for the MSM and Tories to latch onto anything , anything at all ( here it is Anti-Semitism , next who knows ) in order to smear JC and Labour yet again .
        The lies peddled by the MSM are irrelevant just so long as some of it sticks in the minds of the gullible and ill-informed public ,, that’s ALL the Tories/MSM/Establishment want to have happen. Anything else is just collateral damage inc democracy truth and integrity .
        It is up to the Alt media online and bogs to challenge this crap and get the truth out , so well done SB and all the other honest blogs

  12. Am I silly to think that it would be useful to be able to read what is written on the wreath itself? Arabic of course but someone can translate…

  13. Just a thought was ‘t it Blair’s best mate Gaddafi who was running Libya at the time that these terrorists were birried there? Obviously Tony can’t have any strong feelings about the matter.

  14. I don’t have an analysis yet on this one but I think there are lots of questions that need sorting out. Would love a proper journalist to do some serious work. At least a few random questions regarding @dannythefink that’s Lord Finkelstein and @Jbickertonuk (he was tweeting about Muralgate just 8 minutes after @LucianaBerger on March 23rd saying essentially everything is clear – he had 6 carefully crafted tweets he fired off in 11 minutes, so he was in on the plot. Well at 10am the same thing happened after the Mail’s article on Saturday, careful thread “everything is clear.” But it’s not clear, and this twitter thread of mine will just give Bernstein or Woodwood some clues:

  15. From Evolve Politics:
    Of the 8 terrorists listed above who perpetrated the atrocity, NONE are buried at the cemetery in Tunis that Corbyn visited:

    Luttif Afif – Buried at Sidi Munaidess Cemetery, Libya
    Yusuf Nazzal – Buried at Sid Munaidess Cemetery, Libya
    Afif Ahmed Hamid – Buried at Sid Munaidess Cemetery, Libya
    Khalid Jawad – Buried at Sid Munaidess Cemetery, Libya
    Ahmed Chic Thaa – Buried at Sid Munaidess Cemetery, Libya
    Mohammed Safady – Allegedly killed by Mossad, unknown grave
    Adnan Al-Gashey – Allegedly killed by Mossad, unknown grave
    Jamal Al-Gashey – Was reportedly still alive in 1999

  16. Just seen the BBC evening news where this smear is repeated ,represented as fact.Fake news yet again from the Tory mouthpiece.

    1. Have complained to the BBC directly about their fake news coverage and their headline online saying Corbyn won’t apologise – (For what? is my question). They interfere and undermine Democracy by their persistent warped reporting and bias, their amplification of untruths. Another timed boycott of the BBC required…..

  17. BBC quoting Guido Fawkes on the subject in their newspaper review on the Today programme.

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