I chose to include the term “bantustan” in the title because it literally describes the desperate move the Palestinian leadership is leading Palestine into:

“But it’s no exaggeration to propose that this idea, although well-meant by some, raises the clearest danger to the Palestinian national movement in its entire history, threatening to wall Palestinian aspirations into a political cul-de-sac from which it may never emerge. The irony is indeed that, through this maneuver, the PA is seizing — even declaring as a right — precisely the same dead-end formula that the African National Congress (ANC) fought so bitterly for decades because the ANC leadership rightly saw it as disastrous. That formula can be summed up in one word: Bantustan,”  wrote Virginia Tilley in “Bantustans and the unilateral declaration of statehood.”

If we can’t learn from recent history, what will we ever achieve? We are being lured into a trap where the rights of millions of dispossessed refugees are at risk, but who is listening?

I said it before and I am willing to say it a thousand times more: Our struggle is not a struggle for symbolic statehood; it is a struggle to gain Palestinians’ basic rights! For more than six decades we have been fighting for our right of return, our right to live in our ancestral homeland, our right to be treated as equal citizens, our right to live in dignity. And our leadership is risking all of that in order to establish a sovereign state on a tiny piece of land of our much bigger homeland.

It was only a few months ago when I published my first ever widely-read article on my personal blog, originally titled “How do you define coexistence”, I questioned the motives of many Israeli anti-occupation leftist groups, and asked them to endorse the one democratic state solution as it is the only solution out there that could end the struggle and guarantee justice and equality for both sides.

If I have learned anything from debating with my Palestinian friends in the last few weeks about the September move, it is that I should address them, my fellow Palestinian countrymen, in the same tone, if not harsher regarding this topic. Let us get over talking hope, and move to understand actions and consequences of this move.

I believe that if I was to see the West Bank and Gaza instantaneously liberated as soon as the United Nations recognizes us as a state, I wouldn’t worry as much because then the leadership would be slightly more able to sort out bigger matters related to refugees. But the ground reality says something else.

Quoting Ali Abunimah’s opinion piece on Aljazeera English news site, he says:

Lebanon has been a member state of the United Nations since 1945 and yet this did not prevent Israel from occupying southern Lebanon from 1978 until 2000. Israel’s occupation of Lebanon ended not because of any international pressure, but only because the Lebanese resistance drove Israel and its collaborating militias out. […] Similarly, since 1967 Israel has occupied the Golan Heights, which belong to Syria (also a UN member since 1945). There has been virtually no armed resistance on the Golan Heights nor has there been any international pressure for Israel to withdraw or for Syrian refugees to return to their homes. […] Why would the situation in the “State of Palestine” be any different?

Legal perspective

Besides the fact on the ground in the West Bank that the Israeli occupation is going nowhere after 20 September, our leadership insists that this is the time to declare statehood ignoring many consequences of this action. The Palestinian delegation to the United Nations has been warned that the September move risks the rights of all diaspora and 1948 Palestinians as it officially “terminates the legal status held by the PLO in the UN since 1975 that it is the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.”

In his seven-page legal document, Guy Goodwin-Gill, a professor of international law at Oxford University, sheds light on the legal risks behind the recognition of the Palestinian state. He said that millions of Palestinian refugees are at risk of losing their representation at the UN if the bid succeeds. He concludes:

“In my opinion, current moves to secure recognition of statehood do not appear to reflect fully the role of the Palestinian people as a principle party in the resolution of the situation in the Middle East. The interests of the Palestinian people are at risk of prejudice and fragmentation, unless steps are taken to ensure and maintain their representation through the Palestinian Liberation Organization, until such time as there is in place a State competent and fully able to assume these responsibilities towards the people at large.”

It is worth mentioning too that Guy Goodwin-Gill is a member of the team that won the 2004 non-binding judgment by the International Court of Justice that the route of Israel’s wall was illegal.

Meanwhile, the Boycott National Committee has issued its own statement warning of harsh consequences to the UN statehood bid.

Bad move

Many non-Palestinian activists, rights groups, politicians, and lawyers are voicing their concerns, but not all are able to protest the Palestinian leadership’s decision because it is an exclusively Palestinian matter. Unfortunately, not many Palestinians are fully aware of the risks, and currently over 6.5 million Palestinians in the diaspora are going to face the consequences of an action taken by someone they didn’t vote for or agree that he speaks for them. The UN move for the state is an action a low percentage of Palestinians agree upon, but unfortunately it is going to be forced upon them.

The Palestinian leadership in Ramallah is fully aware of the consequences of this move, but personally I feel that their action is coming from anger towards the failing peace process that they went into for decades. This anger is pushing them for an irrational move, anything that they’d be able to claim as a success of their own, ignoring consequences. This move aims to separate and break the bond between Palestinians all over the world, the Palestinian leadership should know better and seek a solution that guarantees the rights of all the Palestinians they “represent.”

Security Council Veto

Whenever you talk about the September bid for the state, you hear Veto. Everyone is almost certain that the United States will use its veto power to halt any unilateral attempt seeking a declaration of a Palestinian state on 1967 lines; some say the Palestinian UN delegation will seek other routes to bypass the Security Council, and others say it will be the end of the road.

Most Palestinians I meet claim that the move for the state in the United Nations is a win-win situation. If we succeed, we get our state. If we don’t succeed, we’d avoid the consequences of having succeeded and we can seek another solution. It is irrational, I know. But those Palestinians are ready and will gladly accept any outcome from the September move.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opposes the Palestinian move because he benefits when he maintains control over all of the illegal settlements in the West Bank. He wants to maintain control over all strategic areas and water wells and springs. He aims to maintain our status quo living in many separate, open air prisons across the West Bank. But, in my opinion, I believe there is no reason US President Barack Obama would oppose the move for two states.

Personally, I doubt the United States will use its veto power. The United States is able to put an end to 64 years of continuous struggle and favor the Zionist end of the equation in this solution. Of course, having said this, putting an end to our struggle in this way will harm us a lot as I have argued earlier.

The two-state solution will cause fragmentation of the Palestinian people, more separation between those in the West Bank and Gaza, those in Israel, and those living in the diaspora. It will forcibly take away the rights of millions.


Qalandia protest crushed

Posted: August 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

“Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association.”

-Universal Decleration of Human Rights. Article (20)

Except the Palestinians, according to Israel.

Palestinian peaceful demonstrations take place in many different places EVERY FRIDAY protesting many issues among them are the occupation, settlements, and the Apartheid Wall. Almost always the demonstrators get teargassed and attacked by Israeli soldiers without having committed any violence against the soldiers. Peaceful protests always maintain their peaceful nature, until there is a serious provocation from the Israeli army where the demonstration loses its organized structure. I am first-hand witness to many of those demonstrations, just as the one at Qalandia today where Israeli soldiers where the first to provoke acts of aggression.

The organizers of Today’s event “Knocking on Jerusalem’s doors”, did their best to maintain a peacefull non-violent nature of the protest, and they succeeded. There were over 200 Palestinians, Israelis, and internationals peacefully carrying placards and chanting directly in the face of the Israeli soldiers who wouldn’t let them into Jerusalem.

B’Tselem, The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, published a good background guide on East Jerusalem, I will quote this excrept:
“Since East Jerusalem was annexed in 1967, the government of Israel’s primary goal in Jerusalem has been to create a demographic and geographic situation that will thwart any future attempt to challenge Israeli sovereignty over the city. To achieve this goal, the government has been taking actions to increase the number of Jews, and reduce the number of Palestinians, living in the city.
Israel has used various methods to achieve its goal, one of the many methods is : Physically isolating East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank, in part by building the separation barrier;”

Today, hundreds of Muslims were able to enter to pray in al-Aqsa through Qalandia checkpoint, but hundreds others were denied and had to return. I talked to two of those peopel who were denied. The first guy told me: “I tried, I tried over and over again, with no result, I am going back now”, I asked if he was ready to protest Israel’s illegal actions on checkpoints, he said: “I don’t want the trouble anymore”. The other person I talked to said: “I tried, I was revoked, but I will keep trying until tomorrow morning if that is what it takes”. Those two guys resemble two words I had on my mind today, frustration and determination respectfully. The two words describe the situation in the Palestinian community today, many Palestinians are frustrated as they have been let down by everyone including their leadership, they belive their effort is worthless therefore they better not bother anymore. While a minority of the senior Palestinian community, a majority of the youth are still hopeful and determined that they can bring the change that will bring peace, justice, and equality on this land.

Today, muslims who were stuck at Qalandia did their prayer there in front of the soldiers, there was a fatwa from the shekh there that if they pray at the closest point they can get to to Jerusalem, it will count as if they prayed in al-Aqsa. This fatwa was to motivate Palestinians to not give up and keep fighting for their right to enter Jerusalem.

After the prayers, everyone stood up, one hand, and chanted against Israeli occupation and symbolically knocked on Jerusalem’s doors as they knocked on the fence between them and the soldiers (Jerusalem is only few meters away). Some guys removed the fence from infront of the soldiers and threw it behind, as we see in the picture below.

About 20 minutes after the Friday prayers were held, I saw the soldier on the fortified cement tower above me spitting on youth below, unprovoked. The guy who was spat at got really angry and pissed, he grabbed a rock, but he calmed down as other protestors told him that soldier isn’t worth the trouble. I was disgusted, a soldier on that tower spat on youth below him as if they were nothing but animals. The youth maintained the peaceful nature of the protest. I shot this short video of the tower few seconds after the soldier spat again, but as I was recording, the soldier looked at me smiling, and he didn’t spit again for the next 30 seconds of the video.

The kids below the tower kept screaming in anger at the soldier in the tower, a friend of the guy who was spat at couldn’t hold his anger, and he threw a rock at the tower. I don’t believe throwing rocks at a fortified, cement, military, and illegally placed tower -of which its windows are also fortified against rocks- is an act of violence. But 10 minutes later, out of the blue, there were sound bombs on top of the people’s heads, gas canisters below everyone’s feet and bullets were heard too from top of the tower. Everyone ran in panic to get cover, people were chocking and fell on the ground as they ran, a friend reported that an ambulance had crashed with a car after it’s driver has fainted, another friend reported that he saw tear gas canisters filling the inside of buses with tear gas clouds. People lost each other in this chaos as the soldiers used brutal and extreme measures to disperse a small peaceful crowd who has the right to access Jerusalem.

Al-Jazeera Arabic were reporting live from Qalandia when this attack happened, in this video, you can see their correspondent Sherine AbuAkleh in a bad situation after she inhaled a lot of tear gas, but she was quickly aided by medics, and was able to return to the camera to report the situation. Al-Jazeera’s camera man suffered a direct hit with a tear gas canisters, as Sherine reported.

The situation after that was extremely chaotic, large units of soldiers followed the protestors and kept shooting tear gas into Qalandia refugee camp. Three people were reportedly arrested, two before the attack, and one after. The two arrested before the attack are Basel Mansour and Ashraf Abu Rahmeh. Basel Mansour was reporedly released, but Ashraf Abu Rahmeh remains. (I will update as soon as I hear more news).

Israel is fearful of peaceful protests of this kind. Israel has been brutally crushing those protests on a daily and weekly basis all over Palestine. I believe that if one of those protests succeeds in peacefully achieving its goal, it might be a call for the sleeping masses to wake up and participate in this popular movement to achieve rights and liberty.


Posted: August 19, 2011 in Blog

First of all, I would like to say that all my thoughts and prayers go to the Palestinians suffering in Gaza tonight!

I am heartbroken, the news is the reason I’ve been depressed for the last two days. I rarely get depressed, but when I read the news of innocent Palestinians dying in Jerusalem and Gaza, I couldn’t hold my tears.

Two days ago, I came home, logged on to twitter and read the news of a Palestinian teenager, Sa’d al-Majdalawi 17 years old, murdered in Gaza. More details were revealed, apparently the victim was a disabled teenager who suffered 10 bullets in his head and the upper part of his body. The part I don’t understand is why did this happen? WHY? He was shot for being in close distance to the barbed wires which marks the borders of the besieged Gaza strip. The medics who carried the body of the teenager to the hospital couldn’t identify him immediatly because “bullets mutiliated his face”. This is not humanity, this is a war crime! For what reason did this kid die? Was he the victim of some IDF woman testing this new remote lethal technology as Ali suggested?

Later, I read the news of a 30 year old father who was brutally run over by Israeli border police jeep in Jerusalem! This Arabic report emerged after the incident, it really worsened my situation. Amin Taleb Dabsh of Sour Baher neighborhood was a 30 year old father, he had a two year old son waiting at home! He was heading to his work that evening when the Israeli jeep poped up and drove over him dragging his body for 150 meters therefore he died on the scene, as witnesses said. The border police jeep was said to have mistaked Amin Taleb for West Bank workers whos presence in Jerusalem is considered illegal by Israel without special work permits. Again I ask the question, for what reason did this man die? All I want to see is justice, all I cry for is justice! Why can’t we have it?

Those two heartbreaking events lead to today’s even worse events. I woke up this morning to the news of multiple attacks on Israeli targets which included Buses and private vehicles in Southern Israel. There were Israeli civilian victims as well as IDF victims due to the gun battle which proceeded after the initial attacks. The attackers were said to have penetrated the borders from Egypt near Taba-Eilat, no one has any clue of their background, no single faction claimed responsibilty for the attacks, yet.

A couple of hours after the sad events in Eilat, the Israeli Minister of “terror department”, excuse me, Minister of Defense, Ehud Barak jumped to the claim that the attackers had links to Gaza or might have even come from Gaza. Later on the Israeli cabinet met and discussed the possibilty of new raids on Gaza in order to retilate for Eilat attacks. Hamas was quick to respond saying they had nothing to do with the attacks, and the people of Gaza shouldn’t be punished for Israel’s internal ills. Unfortuantly no one listens, the Israeli airforce commenced and attacked targets in Gaza yesterday evening killing 6, among them was this 2 year old kid in the picture below. Should I presume he/she was a terrorist? was he/she one of the masterminds behind Eilat attacks?  *sighs*

Embedded image, on Imgur







For a while after the first air strikes, calm returned to Gaza, but citizens weren’t feeling comfortable or safe at all. They were expecting even more strikes. The Strikes continued after midnight, a family in Gaza were stricken while safe at their home, the victim now is the 13 year old Mahmoud Abu Samra, as you can see him left in this picture:

But why?? This 13 year old kid had his childhood taken away, he had his dreams taken away by an occupier who attacked him for no reason! no reason!!

Until now, there is no evidence at all that would link anyone in Gaza to Eilat attacks, but Israel needs a scapegoat, someone to blame for all the wrongs it has. Gaza has indeed become the scapegoat suffering severe attacks whenever an Israeli is attacked, or even with no reason! Collective punishment is a war crime, what Israel is doing today is terrorize the population living in the Gaza strip! This is inhumane! absurdity! Just like shooting fish in a barrel, Palestinians have nowhere to escape to!

I wrote this based on my feelings of only the past three days, it is unimaginable what Palestinians suffer througout the years!

Speak up today against this inhumanity! We want justice! We are humans, nothing less than anyone else!

I read a comment which said:

“Dear Palestinians, Not everything in Israel is about you. Believe it or not, we have full lives outside of you.

This comment is only a sample of what Israelis are saying to counter those who attack #j14 for not addressing the real injustice Palestinians suffer inside Israel and the occupied territory. You will see such words everywhere if you try to question the Tent Protest movement or critique any aspect of it.

Today’s Headline on Haaretz English is:

Israel to build thousands of new housing units in East Jerusalem

Today’s headline on the Jerusalem Post:

‘Israel trying to fix social ills at Palestinians’ expense’

This can’t get any more ugly, until now we haven’t seen any official #J14 condemnations of those actions by the Israeli Government! Does #j14 accept that their social issues can be solved at Palestinian expense? really?

Silence is complicity!

It has been claimed that this Tent Protest movement hasn’t addressed any of those issues, even after 4 weeks,  because it is afraid of losing public support.  We have been called naive for assuming that Israelis wouldn’t address big issues instantly, this doesn’t convince me. Everyday is another chance to open up the conversation, until when should we wait?

Addressing issues related to Palestinians cannot and shouldn’t be ignored in this whole social justice movement. Don’t use the idea that Arabs are joining the protest movement to boost your own interest and publicity! Do not normalize the situation by using Arab presence, Arabs have demands, and you better address those! Please, end the hypocrisy and emerge to reality!

Post Copied from redactednews which addresses a serious issue concerning the Jewish Internet Defense Force.
Mazel Tov! The Megaphonies are out in force today.  JIDF, claiming they have no conspiratorial power in shutting down internet posts, in turn fueling conspiracy theories by doing so, apparently do have said great power, as the post below pointing out their existence, mysteriously disappeared from the front page of the politics subreddit, after garnering 5,000 upvotes.   JIDF has a page urging their supporters to downvote everything anti-Israel on Reddit as seen below.
How they describe themselves:

The Jewish Internet Defense Force (JIDF) is a private, independent, non-violent protest organization representing a collective of activists. We have operated under the name the “Jewish Internet Defense Force” since the massacre at the Mercaz HaRav Yeshiva in Jerusalem.We provide cutting edge pro-Israel advocacy, presenting constant news and information through email, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Myspace, Digg, and other popular areas of the web to those who share concerns about antisemitic online content, as well as content which promotes Islamic terrorism.

We believe in direct action both to eradicate the problems we face online and to create the publicity that will cause those with companies like Facebook and Google to take the needed action themselves.

We work to bring together different individuals and represent a younger generation of Jewish leaders, a new approach, and a real grassroots effort for change!

The founder of the JIDF, David Appletree, recently spoke at the WUJS Congress 2009: “Unlocking our Future”, alongside the IDF Spokesperson department. The WUJS represents 1.5 million Jewish students, worldwide. The conference was sponsored by the World Jewish Congress, World Zionist Organization, Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Israeli Knesset, and others.

Here’s the post that’s currently on the front page of Reddit. Notice the number of downvotes at the far right of the image: 8,230 downvotes on a post about free speech?

JIDF has a page urging their supporters to downvote everything anti-Israel on Reddit:

What is #j14 really about?

Posted: August 7, 2011 in Blog

I am not a privileged Jewish citizen of Israel, therefore if it stays as it is now, I wont be directly affected by this Tent Protest movement. But I  am writing this only out of concern of the message this protest convey, What is #J14 really about?

These protests started when some Israelis decided to protest high prices of Tel Aviv apartments by setting up tents in Tel Aviv’s Rothschild boulevard. This movement assigned #j14 as a hashtag people use to discuss this topic on the internet, it stands for July 14, the day it all began.

#J14 developed into protests calling for Social Justice for the citizens of Israel. It started with youth protesting housing prices and turned into a massive movement that included doctors, lawyers, social workers, government employees etc. all protesting low wages and demand social justice. On Saturday, 300,000 Israelis took to the streets to participate in the protest. This movement is something that cannot be ignored, it is the awakening of a people which has for long been unawakened. But, what are they being awakened to?

The real defect the state of Israel suffered since it’s inception is Zionism which led to ethnic cleansing, occupation, and later Apartheid. One thing #j14 has failed to address since it began is the necessity to end occupation to be able to come out of the protests with actual results and not something that would simply continue with the ill treatment of Palestinians inside Israel and the occupied territories.

Now, it is important to clarify that I am not saying there weren’t chants against the occupation, that there weren’t calls for equal treatment for all citizens, Jewish and Arab (in occupied territories too). There were, but the movement organizers decided not to address those crucial issues because they were afraid to lose popular support from Jewish Israeli participants. Organizers have said clearly that they want to keep this movement “apolitical” therefore not addressing racism, not addressing occupation, not addressing ethnic cleansing and simply call for social justice only for the dominant Jewish majority. A list of official demands has emerged but it doesn’t address any of the issues I stated. This is a blind movement as long as it doesn’t address crucial issues which are the reason of all this.

The Israeli Government is putting a lot of its money to maintain an occupation which will not last! Today, a lot of settlers are moving into West Bank settlements because of cheaper housings and cheaper life styles. Settlers are lured into Settlements because the rightest government offers them easy life there. Those who stay to live in cities like Tel Aviv pay the cost, they pay for the actions of a government which seeks to enlarge an illegal occupation of an occupied territory. Do most Israelis realize that their tax money has been heavily invested by their government into building an illegal wall around the West Bank instead of improving their lives  in Israel? This is the real injustice, ending the occupation leads to the accomplishment of your goals in achieving social justice.

As Ali Abunimah has put it: “So #j14 is like whites protesting for better incomes in 1985 South Africa, but leaving out apartheid because it’s “too divisive.”

And quoting Joseph Dana’s twitter too: “Many #j14 protesters say that the movement is “apolitical” which is code for “we don’t talk about the Palestinians or the Occupation.”

I really cannot say I support this movement now, but I believe it can turn to be good in one way. Those who claim that they oppose occupation and the ill treatment of Palestinians should use this vibrant environment to come out strong, come up with a new list of demands that would call for an end of occupation and grant social justice and equality for everyone, all citizens who are under Israeli rule, including the occupied territories. This is your chance, now is the time!

Always being afraid of what the community would think is the way to never change. If they decide to ignore the injustice, then they silently approve of it. I don’t want misleading messages that this protest has people who call for an end to occupation when I don’t see that in news headlines or official demand list. It is never too late though!

Speak Now Or Forever Hold Your Peace


Less than a week ago, I started reading on Twitter that there will be a large demonstration organized by Israeli Leftwing activists in Jerusalem protesting the new Boycott Bill and Israeli occupation of Palestinian Occupied Territories. I expected that activists will challenge the anti-Boycott law and chant for BDS or call for Settlement boycott as well as chanting for a Palestinian state, I was wrong. It turned out to be a march organized by Zionist leftists calling for a legitimate Palestinian state next to the state of Israel. I just lost all motives that would make me want to attend that demonstrations, but I eventually did, only as an observer and not a participant.

I am extremely critical of Zionism and I dislike the Two-State Solution for many reasons which I hav

e mentioned in a previous article which you could take a look at here.  I believe the one and only proper eternal solution for this conflict is one democratic secular state, it is not going to happen by Palestinians’ effort alone, nor Israelis’ effort alone, it will happen when Palestinians and Israelis decide to join hands to fight for the right to live together equally on this land. The West Bank, Syria, Jordan, Gaza, Lebanon… are not homes for Palestinians who were expelled from their homes in 1948, they deserve the right to live in their lands and enjoy equality.

Event's official poster

Something that is worth mentioning is, as Ali Abunimah noted on his twitter, that the event official poster was slightly misleading. It was written in Arabic and Hebrew. Hebrew title said “We march for Independence” and the Arabic title said “We march for Liberation” معا نسير للتحرير. As I already said, this could be misleading, two different things, it should have said “Marching for independence” too in Arabic rather than “Liberation” if liberation isn’t what they really seek.

I decided to attend this demonstration as an observer because I believed in the goodness of their short term goals standing in solidarity with Palestinians living in threatened East Jerusalem neighborhoods like Shekh Jarrah, Silwan, Ras Amoud, Tur, and others and of course against West Bank illegal settlements. I decided to overlook the actual purpose they decided to march through the streets of Jerusalem. I simply despised the idea that many people there carried posters saying “Two People, Two States, One Future” That is an oxymoron. Three quarters of the Palestinian citizens in Gaza are refugees expelled from their homes back in 1948, and similar is the case in the West Bank. How would two separated peoples each living on a side of a border holding hostility to each other would have one future? If they reconcile they’d live together, or the idea of one future would be out of reach.

While heading to the demonstration, I was lucky to meet an Italian guy who was active with Solidarity Sheikh Jarrah group, I began conversing with him on the background of this demonstration and why is he attending. His words actually gave me hope, he is not a Zionist, and he does believe one day those anti-occupation activists will refuse the idea of political Zionism. He said it would take them a while, maybe decades, but just as they became anti-occupation in few years, this generation can become the hope for a peaceful futuristic one Palestine-Israel state. “Everything positive starts from demonstrations like this” he said, and I appreciated that. I believe what he is saying is true.

Youth leading the march

An Israeli holding a placard which says "I love Arabs"

There was one other guy who caught my attention at this demonstration, he was carrying a placard saying “I love Arabs” in Hebrew. I immediately came up to him and asked him what his views were; he simply said “I don’t care about solutions”. Men like him, who put extreme religion and politics aside and focuses on humanitarian aspects, are men who keep me hopeful. We have seen enough misery and destruction caused by extremism, time to accept each other as humans and separate each other even more.

Big crowds at the march





Although I was not officially participating in the demonstration, but I was extremely happy that thousands of Israelis actually showed up for this march, from this point anything is possible. Hopefully the one state vision spreads between Israeli youth as well as Palestinian youth, because we have seen enough today to prove that youth are capable of achieving what none could.

As for a different matter, the organizers of this march hoped they could achieve a joint-struggle title where Palestinians and Israelis together would march for the same cause. It was a success, but not as in the scale expected. Palestinians did join the march, and for the matter of fact, many Palestinians lead a majority of the chants at the march. But I believe most of those Palestinians were marching for the sake of their threatened homes in East Jerusalem neighborhoods, therefore serving short-term aims of the march to put a stop to the ethnic cleansing of Arab Jerusalemites, and not to call for an independent state in the West Bank and Gaza.

Some may call me naïve, but I assure you I am not. These views are not of mine alone, they’re shared by a majority of Palestinians and many Israelis as well. This phrase is one of my favorites as it holds a true meaning, “If we can’t live together, we will die alone.”

The march reaches Shekh Jarrah neighborhood