Let's show our support by visiting Palestine

The Arab people in Jerusalem - mostly Palestinians - have been living in such a jail for the last 70 years.

By Mustafa Al Zarooni

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Published: Thu 25 Jan 2018, 8:00 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jan 2018, 10:13 PM

It's most painful when the jailer who is occupying your homeland imprisons you. Voices around you are ready to help, but lack actual ground support. That's when you are finally forced to face the warden with your hands shackled.
The Arab people in Jerusalem - mostly Palestinians - have been living in such a jail for the last 70 years. Despite being painfully sidelined during these last decades, despite the agony they have been suffering, despite the deteriorating businesses they have had and despite the difficult times they have been through without being able to even meet their daily needs, the Arab people in Jerusalem have rejected the millions of dollars offered to them by the jailer - read Israelis - in return for a tiny home the jailer would buy from them.
And all this while they remained patient and firm, not falling prey to the lure of the money and dangerous aggressions from time to time.
But how many generations will remain patient? How long can we wait and watch? How long can we take the atrocities? The methods adopted by the Arab people to confront the occupation has not made headway. They have also failed to provide support to the Arab people in Jerusalem.
Is it not time to think of a change in approach? Is it not time to visit Jerusalem to support the Arab people living there?
Yes, the time has come to extend help to these people, to help beef up their economy and to guarantee them a decent life.
We have for so long remained passive, waiting for the normalisation of relations with Israel instead of protesting at the jailer's fort till our demands are met.
"Visiting prisoners is not a matter of normalisation of relations with the jailer," said Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the International Conference of Al Azhar. He sincerely appealed to Arabs across the Arab world to visit the Arab people in Jerusalem to give them support and a helping hand.
Abbas's statement is an explicit invitation to break Israeli blockade and monopoly.
Israel aims to work on decreasing the number of Arab people in Jerusalem - Palestinians living in Jerusalem - by luring them with dollars to leave their homes and start a new life in another country. They could either choose that or give in to the jailer's pressure tactics where their businesses are shut down and are at the mercy of the jailer. There are, in fact, only two options open to them - either starve to death or sell their cause and eventually their homeland.
malzarooni@khaleejtimes.com



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