At a campaign stop during his 2008 presidential run, Mike Huckabee told supporters he doesn’t believe Palestinians actually exists, BuzzFeed reports.
BuzzFeed posted the video on Wednesday; it has been on YouTube for years.
In the video, a man dressed in clothing traditional among Orthodox Jews tells Huckabee the “Palestinian state doesn’t have to be in Israel,” and asks the former Republican governor of Arkansas for his comments on the matter.
“Well and basically, I mean,” Huckabee begins, “there really is no such thing as — I need to be careful about saying this, because people will really get upset — there’s really no such thing as a Palestinian. There’s not.”
According to Huckabee, the concept of a Palestinian is “a political tool to try to force land away from Israel.”
“My point is,” Huckabee continues, “if that’s the issue, if it’s real estate? If you look at a map, and say here’s how much Israel has and here’s how much the Arab states hold, there’s plenty of land.”
“Let ’em take it out of Egypt,” Huckabee says about where on the globe more than 2.7 million people should relocate to. “Let ’em take it out of, out of Syria. Let ‘em take it out of Jordan. There are plenty of places.”
“What worries me,” Huckabee confides to the man he is speaking with, “is we better respect Israel’s decisions.”
The supporter mentions a Jewish Republican event coming up in Washington, D.C. He says there are people in his religious community — “especially conservative Jews, Orthodox Jews” — who appreciated Huckabee’s affection for Israeli land and military policy.
“Right now they’re talking about dividing Jerusalem,” another man, who also appears to be an Orthodox Jew, tells Huckabee.
That would be “devastating,” Huckabee replies, with an air of concern.
Situated on the Mediterranean Sea between Egypt and Jordan, historic Palestine was partitioned in 1947 by U.N. decree, in response to a global Jewish refugee crisis following the Holocaust. Orchestrated by the German government, and assisted by cooperation from other countries, more than 11 million people, about 6 million of them Jewish, were killed in a coordinated genocide.
After American and British troops, who were fighting Nazi forces in World War II, arrived upon their sprawling network of concentration camps across Europe, the international community was forced to reckon with millions of Jewish refugees with no country to call home.
The United Nation declared that 55 percent of the land in historic Palestine would go to its Jewish population, with the other 45 percent going to the Palestinians, who for centuries had lived on 100 percent of the land.
Israel declared itself an independent nation state in 1948, and has continued to expand its borders outward onto Palestinian territory.
Watch Huckabee tell campaign supporters that Palestinian people are not real: