By Sam Costanza www.inquisitr.com
Hamas Minister of Interior and National Security Fathi Hammad recently announced on Egyptian Al-Hekma television that the Palestinian-Arabs do not actually come from the land of Israel, renamed Palestina by the Romans following the suppression of a Jewish revolt in Judea some two millennia past. This is in line with the obscure and politically incorrect fact that many of those now calling themselves Palestinians arrived during a period stretching from the end of the Ottoman rule in the laste nineteenth century through the British Mandate period that ended in 1948, during which time the Zionist movement revolutionized the economy of what was a Ottoman backwater with a scarce and poor community considered part of the Syrian district.
“Who are the Palestinians?” he asked the television audience? “We have many families named Al-Matzri, whose roots are Egyptian. Egyptians! They came from Alexandria, Cairo, Dumietta, the North, from Aswan and Upper Egypt. We are Egyptians. We are Arabs. We are Muslims. We are a part of you.”
Half of all Gazans, he stated, came from Egypt, the other half from Saudi Arabia.
These statements stand in stark contrast with Palestinian Authority propaganda which paints the Palestinians as having lived in the land from time immemorial and which claims that they are, in fact, descendants of the Canaanites. Sometimes the PA propaganda machine appropriates ancient Jewish history as its own and even claims that Jesus was Palestinian, rather than Jewish.
Asking for help from his Egyptian brothers, Hammad stated that “Al-Aqsa and the land of Palestine represent the spearhead for Islam and for the Muslims. Therefore, when we seek the help of our Arab brothers, we are not seeking their help in order to eat, to live, to drink, to dress, or to live a life of luxury. No. When we seek their help, it is in order to continue to wage Jihad.”
Since Palestinian nationalism developed in the 1920s, prior to which it was subsumed under the popular Pan-Arab nationalist ideology, it is considered artificial by some.
In the 1970s, PLO leader Zuheir Mohsen told the Dutch newspaper Trouw that:
“Between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese there are no differences. We are all part of ONE people, the Arab nation. Look, I have family members with Palestinian, Lebanese, Jordanian and Syrian citizenship. We are ONE people. Just for political reasons we carefully underwrite our Palestinian identity. Because it is of national interest voor the Arabs to advocate the existence of Palestinians to balance Zionism. Yes, the existence of a separate Palestinian identity exists only for tactical reasons. The establishment of a Palestinian state is a new tool to continue the fight against Israel and for Arab unity.”
Interestingly, one of the biggest advocates for Palestinian self-determination, former Israeli-Arab Knesset Member Azmi Bishara, who is now a fugitive after allegedly passing on defense information to Hezbollah during the 2006 Second Lebanon War, stated on Israeli television that:
“I do not think there is a Palestinian nation, I think its a colonialist invention – Palestinian nation. When were there any Palestinians? Where did it come from? I think there is an Arab nation. I never turned to be a Palestinian nationalist, despite of my decisive struggle against the occupation. I think that until the end of the 19th century, Palestine was the south of Greater Syria.”