In recent years, the Russian Federation has sought to obstruct the work of the UN Security Council whenever it comes to issues of massacre in Syria. We have also witnessed the way the United States is able to obstruct the work of the Security Council when it comes to the issues of Jerusalem and Palestine in terms of their livelihood and freedoms.
For decades, we have warned the world that we will all be victims of violent extremism if there is no fair solution to the Palestinian issue. And today, we’ve stated that violent extremism will target us and others if peace is not restored in Syria, Libya and Yemen.
The aim of these warnings is for the international community to rally for a solution for these issues, even if the Russians and the Americans don’t. In fact, some parties have taken honorable positions in this sense, but the world has not acted like it should for putting an end to massacres in Gaza, the West Bank and Jerusalem.
An American journalist told me few days ago that Hamas in Gaza is escalating tensions and causing more bloodshed among its people although it knows there is no hope and no future. On this, my colleague responded that it’s because there is no hope or future, the Palestinians in Gaza have nothing left to loseRadwan al-Sayed
Need for unity
The official Arab and Islamic institutions will have plenty to say about the failure of the international order and they will even claim that they are conspiring against Palestinians and other Arabs. But what we do not know or understand is why Arab and Islamist parties cannot do more and impact more with regards to a united position before the world and in the international realm before the Security Council.
Arabs big and small and Muslim young and old can join ranks, decide to withdraw ambassadors, and can authorize demonstrations in Arab countries. I do not see the point in settling with Arab League meeting at the delegate-level and not at level of foreign ministers. Or what stands in the way of calling for an emergency and extraordinary conference after the Dhahran summit, which came to be known as the Jerusalem summit?
We have always alerted the world that it is in danger of extremism, which will continue to flourish. Yet, none of us told our people and the world that the relations with all the countries supporting the Zionist enemy, namely the United States, will not remain the same.
They would say: But our countries are weaker than that! But if we look at the Arab situation everywhere and not only in Palestine, we find that it is bad, mainly because of foreign interferences, and that it’s bad to the extent that nothing we can do can make it any worse. We are threatening them with our extremists, but we are not threatening them with our countries, our societies, our wealth and our capabilities, which will no longer be weak if we come together and if we’re open to young forces which are as enthusiastic and as capable of making sacrifices as the children and youths of Palestine.
An American journalist told me few days ago that Hamas in Gaza is escalating tensions and causing more bloodshed among its people although it knows there is no hope and no future. On this, my colleague responded that it’s because there is no hope or future, the Palestinians in Gaza have nothing left to lose amid this suffocating siege which has lasted for more than 10 years.
Where is the Arab dignity which could not unite Palestinians for over a decade now? How can the Palestinians rush towards a fatal fire but be incapable of making concessions to their Palestinian brothers, regardless of who is right and who is wrong?
Furthermore, are the people of Gaza besieged and the people of Jerusalem and the West Bank are not? In Gaza, which is not under Israeli occupation, there are no settlements and no Israeli police or army. Why can’t the besieged people unite to safeguard their own interests? I am certain that Arabs, who really support the Palestinians, can bring those contending with each other to agree.
Let’s forget the extremist menace for a second – an extremism which even in its most radical rhetoric, it never focused on Palestine nor did it claim to work on liberating it. Let’s forget about this for a minute, and look at Iran which has raised the banner of Jerusalem and Palestine since the 1980s, worked under this false premise to divide Palestinians, as Hafez al-Assad had done, and worked on infiltrating countries and societies.
Some naïve people believed that Iran’s slogans were out of the goodness of their hearts. In 2007, the Iranians used Gaza as a thorn in Egypt’s side, and then they thanked Hezbollah in 2015 for its input in securing the nuclear agreement with the international community! What I want to highlight is that Iran, and later on Erdogan, have succeeded in making the world believe that they support Palestine, while our countries have failed to draw the right attention, which can push the world to free the Palestinian people, the last people in the world who are still colonized!
We have been in this absurd situation since 1947 as the Zionists have so far taken control of over 80 per cent of the Palestinian people’s land and they are trapping millions of Palestinians in the remaining 20 per cent. Instead of we being the ones threatening of a war, French President Macron is the one who at one point warns of a war because of what’s happening in Syria and at another because of what’s happening in Palestine.
Some Arabs echo what the American journalist told us, that Hamas is the one that has escalated the situation. But Hamas did not start the present situation, unlike what it did in the years 2008, 2009 and 2012. The Zionists and Trump are the ones who have started it this time. Around this time last year, they wanted to shut down Al-Aqsa mosque and prevent Palestinian worshipers from praying there, and the Palestinians fought to be able to pray in their mosque.
Later, Trump took the aggressive step and declared Jerusalem the capital of the Jewish state. His argument was that he had promised this to his fellow Americans voters! Let us study this pretext: What does the United States has to do with Jerusalem and Palestine, to grant the Zionists East Jerusalem, and then go back and encourage the settlers to violate the mosque every day, under the pretext that it is their structure that disappeared over 2,000 years ago!
If we are surprised by this, then we have to pay attention to other invasions: the Iranians have discovered 10,000 mausoleum of Ahl al Bayt in Syria, and even more in Iraq, and before and after that in Lebanon. The Ethiopians also discovered that they have the right to stop the flow of the Nile and prevent Egyptians from using its water. Egypt, as the Greek Herodotus said thousands of years ago, is the gift of the Nile!
Erdogan, who ordered the Israeli ambassador in Turkey to leave, also discovered that he has a share in the Syrian territory, which is the same thing that the Israelis discovered a long time ago in the Syrian Golan. In fact, the Israelis are today fighting against the Iranians over Syrian territory. Meanwhile, the Iranians want to extend towards Yemen after having done so in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon!
The late Yasser Arafat had said: No one will be able to swallow Palestine as long as the Palestinian people are sacrificing their blood to remain worthy of their land and nation. Just like in the Husseinian legend, blood conquers the sword. The Palestinians are carrying their bodies of their children on their chests and heading towards the fire that’s targeting them and raging all around them, with no weapon other than the flowing blood. There is neither might nor power except with Allah.
This article is also available in Arabic.
Radwan al Sayed is a Lebanese thinker and writer who attained a bachelor degree from the Faculty of Theology at al-Azhar University and a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Tübingen in Germany. He has been a scholar of Islamic studies for decades and is the former editor-in-chief of the quarterly al-Ijtihad magazine. Radwan is also the author of many books and has written for Arab dailies such as al-Ittihad, al-Hayat and ash-Sharq al-Awsat.