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Where have the Arab masses gone?

British protestors gathered outside the US embassy in London to decry Donald Trump's so-called 'Deal of the Century' on February 1, 2020 [organisers]
British protesters gathered outside the US embassy in London to decry Donald Trump's so-called 'Deal of the Century' on 1 February 2020 [organisers]

Donald Trump dropped a bombshell with his “deal of the century”, which eliminates what remains of historic Palestine and completely liquidates the Palestinian cause. The Arab countries should have risen up as one against this. The Arab masses should have taken to the streets in their millions as a natural reaction to the deal. Neither happened, not even in the occupied Palestinian territories in the West Bank. Those who did take to the streets, somewhat timidly, were in Jordan, Algeria and Morocco.

What has happened to the Arab people? Where have the masses gone? Have their feelings towards the central Arab cause, Palestine, faded? We saw mass demonstrations in years gone by when, for example, Ariel Sharon desecrated Al-Aqsa Mosque; when 12-year-old Mohammad Al-Durra was killed; when Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, Abdel Aziz Al-Rantisi and others were martyred. The masses also took to the streets during the frequent Israeli attacks against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

The latest weak response mirrors the reaction to Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the “undivided” capital of the State of Israel. Even the US President himself said at the time that he expected more of a reaction from the Arabs. I am sure that it is the lack of a furious reaction that encouraged him to make so many unjust moves in favour of the Zionist enemy which should have provoked the Arabs, as he is assured that, as a single nation, they are moribund. Such moves include the green light for Israel to annex the Syrian Golan Heights and the illegal Zionist settlements, as well as cutting off US donations to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), all of which were the prelude to the ill-fated deal.

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Instead of street protests, the Arab masses are apparently content with declaring their anger via social media, no doubt because they are themselves oppressed by dictators who rule with an iron first and do not allow any kind of publicly-expressed dissent. When they did take things into their own hands, during and after the Arab Spring revolutions, Palestinian flags flew in the public squares in solidarity with the people of Palestine.

In Egypt after the revolution, for example, one man climbed the walls of the tower block where the Israeli Embassy is located on the 12th floor, and took down the Israeli flag, which was thrown to the ground and burned; the act was applauded by witnesses. Compare this with the fate of the young man who held up a Palestinian flag while watching a football match a few months ago. He was arrested and sent for trial.

That is what has happened to the Arab people, and why Israel conspired against the Arab Spring with its agents in the region, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, so that national leaders controlled by Israel could be appointed as proxies to guard their borders. The President of security coordination with Israel, Mahmoud Abbas, admitted his own betrayal in his speech before the so-called Arab League. He said that he had given the Israelis information that they could only dream of having, but now he is stopping and they will need to fend for themselves. He also said that he believed the Palestinians do not need guns and will seek to make the State of Palestine a demilitarised entity. It is a fact that the Arab rulers see Israel as a lifeline for them, which is why they rush to please it in any way possible in order to ensure that they remain on their thrones.

It is thus shameful that the Chairman of the Transitional Military Council in Sudan, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Uganda after the announcement of Trump’s deal of shame, and announced that he had agreed to normalise relations with the Zionist state. Incredibly, he claimed that his visit to Entebbe will benefit the Palestinian people.

After Al-Burhan’s trip — which was treacherous to both our religion and the Arab people — we can say without exaggeration that the entire Nile Valley is now under Israeli domination. It completes the comprehensive Arab siege of the Palestinian people, who are now being asked to give up everything as part of the surrender document masquerading as a “peace plan”.

However, this will not happen. The heroic Palestinian people will never surrender and will never give in. They have already started individual action, but we want them to stage a collective uprising led by a unified leadership that shakes the earth from under the feet of the Zionists. We want a united resistance and a return to the struggle of the past. The historical land of Palestine, from the river to the sea, will only be restored through legitimate resistance of all kinds.

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The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.

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