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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The 'Palestinians' need to get a sense of humor

'Palestinians' are seething at al-Jazeera for playing a parody of the 'Palestinian National Anthem' in the background of a debate between Hamas spokesman Osama Hamdan, and member of the Fatah Central Committee Nasser Al-Qudwa from Ramallah. The two were discussing the 'reconciliation' agreement between Hamas and Fatah.
Al-Jazeera Arabic played a mocking parody of the once Palestinian national anthem “My Homeland,” titled “It was my homeland” during an interview with Fatah and Hamas leaders from a Beirut studio Saturday, angering Palestinians.

The lyrics of the song, originally a poem written by Palestinian poet Ibrahim Touqan put to music by Lebanese artist Mohammad Flaifel, served as the national anthem until the late 80s. The poem was an ode to the land, the people, the holy sites and the trees of Palestine. The opening lyrics of the song Al-Jazeera played were as follows:

My homeland, My homeland
Curse and perversity, Plague and hypocrisy
Are in your hills, Are in your hills
Tyrants and oppressors, Cunning not fidelity
Are in your sanctuary, Are in your sanctuary
Will I see you? Nothing else

The verse is a parody of the original:

My homeland, My homeland
Glory and beauty, Sublimity and splendor
Are in your hills, Are in your hills
Life and deliverance, Pleasure and hope
Are in your air, Are in your Air
Will I see you? Will I see you?

Viewers of the program, Open Dialogue (Hiwar Maftouh) presented by Ghassan Ben Jeddo, were shocked and angered by the move, apparently meant to stir conversation between the guests. The song was published on the internet over a month ago, and has been re-posted on several sites since.
Maybe it has been re-posted on several sites, but JPost reports it is nowhere to be found.
The song surfaced on the Internet a month ago but has yet to reach a wider English-speaking audience. After originally being posted on YouTube and subsequently distributed across the Internet, a simple English search on YouTube and Google for "Palestinian Anthem Parody," does not return a single relevant result despite various reports of the song having been viewed and heard tens of thousands of times across the Internet in Arabic.
I guess they took it down for being in the 'offensive to Muslims' category. Ma'an reported on al-Qudwa's reaction:
Collecting himself from an obvious state of shock, the Fatah member said, he was unimpressed that the "video found its way to Al-Jazeera.” He described the song as a distortion of “one of the most important national anthems we are so proud of…this has reached an unacceptable degree and an unprecedented regression.”


Ben Jeddo refuted Al-Qudwa’s shock said the song was not new, and that it had been listened to by tens of thousands on youtube already. Al-Qudwa would only comment that he had seen the “worst degree of degradation in the Palestinian arena” on that day.
JPost attributes that last quote to Hamdan.

But most important, the song's history. This is JPost:
Written in 1934 by Palestinian poet Ibrahim Touqan and musically arranged thereafter by Lebanese composer Muhammad Flaifel, "My Homeland" is believed to have been written in response to Jewish immigration to the Land of Israel and the changing demographics of the country. In 1996, the poem was recognized as the national anthem of the Palestinian Authority. In 2004, it was adopted as the national song of Iraq.
Maan adds:
Written in 1934 at the peak of Jewish immigration to British Mandate Palestine, many consider it the poem that expresses Arab concern for what would later be the founding of a Jewish state and the subsequent displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians.
Note two things. First, the anthem is meant to express fear of the founding of a Jewish state in 1934, long before there was an 'occupation' (assuming one believes that the term 'occupation' only refers to areas outside the 1949 armistice lines - the 'Palestinians' certainly don't use the term that way).

Second, Fatah and Hamas have actually managed to agree on something other than hatred of Israel and the 'need' to destroy it (God forbid). What could go wrong?

The picture is Fatah's 43rd anniversary poster, which shows the entire state of Israel as being 'Palestine.'


At 4:32 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

The Palestinians are obsessed with the past. Jews on the other hand look forward to the future. The themes of the anthems could not be more different. I haven't heard of any one writing a parody of Hatikvah (who wants to make fun of hope?) yet while its easy enough to satirize the Palestinian pre-occupation with violence and revenge.

No wonder the Palestinians are so upset.



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