January 2, 2019 Special Dispatch No. 7825

Palestinian Authority Daily On Christmas 2018: Jesus Was 'The First Martyr And Fidai,' 'The Loyal Son Of Palestine,' Symbol Of The Palestinian National Struggle Against The Distorters Of Judaism, Who Was Persecuted And Crucified By Them

January 2, 2019
Palestine | Special Dispatch No. 7825

On Christmas, December 25, 2018, the Palestinian Authority (PA) daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida published two articles linking Jesus to the Palestinian national struggle against Israel. One of the articles described Jesus as a Palestinian hero who was crucified for defending his rights in the face of "fanatic Jews" who distorted Judaism, just s the Zionists have "hijacked" Judaism with the support of "the capitalist West." The second article described Jesus as a martyr and as the first fidai (fighter who sacrifices his soul), who gave his life for the homeland.

It should be noted that this is not the first time that senior Palestinian officials have linked Jesus to the Palestinian national struggle. For example, during a visit he made to the Deheishe refugee camp in 1999, Michel Sabbah, the Latin Patriarch in Jerusalem until 2008, stated that Jesus was a refugee who opposed exploitation and the violation of rights, and therefore the Palestinian refugees must demand their rights and not neglect them. On the same occasion, As'ad 'Abd Al-Rahman, then a member of the PLO Executive Committee and PA minister of refugee affairs, who delivered a speech on behalf of then PA president Yasser Arafat, called Jesus "the first Palestinian refugee, the first prince of peace, and the first Palestinian Fidai, who was redeemed through pain and suffering..."[1]

The following are translated excerpts from the two articles published in Al-Hayat Al-Jadida on December 25, 2018.

Columnist Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul: Jesus Was The First Symbol Of The Struggle For National Liberation 

The daily's columnist 'Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul wrote: "There is a special fragrance to Christmas, because of its unique place in the Palestinian [historic] consciousness itself, with its prophets, and specifically our Lord the Messiah [Jesus], may he rest in peace, the loyal and respected son of Palestine, who more than 2,000 years ago defended his religious, political, and legal choice against the fanatic Jews who despised him and persecuted him until they [eventually] crucified him.

"Jesus, may he rest in peace, was the first symbol of the struggle for national liberation from the clutches of those who pretend to represent the Jewish religion [but] who [in fact] distorted the Old Testament and fabricated its intent, fought their prophets and oppressed the Jews, the Christians, and others during the time of our Lord the Messiah. They have not ceased their crimes to this very day, [for now] Judaism has been hijacked by the Zionist movement, which turned it into a vehicle for the colonialist project with the unconditional support and consent of the capitalist West, in order to realize [the Zionists'] colonialist aims. They continue, on a daily basis, to push [matters] towards the option of a religious war, so as to cover up the crimes of the colonial Zionists and their allies in the White House, the Pentagon, the corridors of both houses [of Congress] and the dubious lobbies, and among the pro-Zionists within the Anglican church [sic, the writer is likely referring to the Evangelicals]..."[2]

Columnist Muwaffaq Matar: Jesus Was The First Martyr And The First Fidai

Columnist Muwaffaq Matar wrote:  "An eternal day began with the birth of the exalted messenger of peace and love, Jesus the Messiah, may he rest in peace... He carried his cross as his holy forehead bled, for the sake of truth, justice and peace. His sacrifice warns us and opens our eyes to the dangers of hegemony and oppression by means of the weapons of repression, poverty and starvation.

"The believers are all potential martyrs until the all-powerful God allows the souls of those beloved by Him to rise heavenward, and the martyrs are believers whose power shapes our national memory... They tell us that our Lord the Messiah, the first martyr and the first Fidai, taught us that love is the way and that life  overflows with bounty that must be sought until the very last moment, for it is one of Allah's wonders in the world and it is never-ending..."[3]  


[1] See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 45,  The Catholic Patriarch Michel Sabbah on Jesus and Jihad, August 17, 1999.

[2] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida (PA), December 25, 2018.

[3] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida (PA), December 25, 2018.


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