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Palestinian expats strongly condemn Trump’s move
BY SALMA ALALEM December 08, 2017
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SHARJAH: The recent announcement by US President Donald Trump to recognise occupied Jerusalem as Israel’s capital was met with anger from Arabs especially Palestinians. In his speech, Trump said,“We cannot solve our problems by making the same failed assumptions and repeating the same failed strategies of the past, it is time to officially recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”

However, to the contrary, Muslims and Arabs, who are committed to the Palestinian cause, have for many years considered occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine. This explains the criticism, disdain and displeasure that greeted the development. The same sentiments were shared by many a Palestinian expat that The Gulf Today spoke to.

Sharing her views on Instagram, Neimat Al Sharif, a Palestinian expat and Dubai resident, said, “We were all angered by Trump’s announcement. We all know and fully believe that occupied Jerusalem has been the Palestinian capital for thousands of years!”

“Allah has mentioned that this Holy land is for Palestinians. Despite the wars that have broken out to steal this land from Palestinians, one day Palestinians will reclaim this land. This is our land. It belongs to us.”

The Arabic hashtags “OccupiedJerulsalemisthecapitalofPalestine” and “OccupiedJerusalemisours” were the most trending in the Middle East following Trump’s ill-advised announcement.

Many social media users posted the Qubbat Al Sakhrah photo, with a caption reading, “You are beautiful like the Prophet Yusuf and the entire world betrayed you like his brothers.”

Ahmad Al Majed, an Emirati TV presenter, said, “Trump’s latest announcement came as an accomplishment of the old agenda, since the Balfour Declaration in 1917.”

Another Emirati TV presenter, Meera Ali, said, “Palestine was yesterday offered as a gift by UK, from Balfour to Israel, and today US declared occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Israel by Trump. When international relations and politics win against our beliefs and unity of language as Arabs, when we are getting developed in all fields, but our land in Palestine is stolen, our leadership in the Middle East will reclaim our rights of owning this land one day because the Palestinian cause will always be every Arab and Muslim’s first and last cause.”

Offering a different perspective, Rand Muhsen, a Palestinian expatriate and Al Ain resident, said, “Unfortunately the problem is not about decisions or announcements; it’s about people’s thought on how to take a step towards any important or ‘new’ trend! If we could just go back to the sequence of events, the mini and tiny ones, that actually had nothing to do with political or religious decisions, I believe that they all were walking through the greatest weapon in the world, which is ‘The Intellectual Weapon’. People are not obligated to take physical or political action. They first need to fight their thoughts, the thoughts that are no longer serving the purpose of being human on the face of earth.”

Muhsen added, “Our useless interests made us easy to follow or react towards things that could be different if our thoughts were led in a proper way. Palestine today is taken by the strongest force as many people might say. But this greatest force had used the stronger weapon to make its dream come true. I think that the easiest way to control any nation is not by tanks and guns. You only need to invade their thought and start with the ‘Intellectual Invasion’.”

She pointed out that the number of people familiar with the history of the Palestinian cause is on the decline. Muhsen stressed the need to revisit priorities in order to safeguard history.

“Every time I listen to the news on TV or read a political article about the Palestinian cause on social media, I ask myself one question: This small number of people, who actually believe that they have to take this land, what made them confident that this could be done easily?” After that, I scroll down my phone screen a little bit and see a post of a celebrity or blogger who has more than one million followers with more than 1,000 likes and 10,000 comments, then, I realise that the problem in the first place is not the political decisions. It’s us. We can’t have peace with fewer readers, less believers, less knowledge,” she added.

Muhsen believes that the world needs thinkers, as per the adage,“His head has been cut to paralyse his thought. The head rolled on the stage and thoughts jumped to the audience.”

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