Arab Media & the Question of Palestine

Its role before and after Al-Aqsa flood; What has changed, and what needs to be considered?
Dr. Samia Abdel Majeed Al-Aghbari
October 28, 2023

Arab Media & the Question of Palestine

Its role before and after Al-Aqsa flood; What has changed, and what needs to be considered?
Dr. Samia Abdel Majeed Al-Aghbari
October 28, 2023

Years ago, I prepared a research paper entitled “The Role of the Arab Media in Confronting the Zionist Project,” in which I discoursed the characteristics of that role and its often negative impact on the Palestinian issue. Through my unceasing follow-up of the Arab media’s coverage of the Al-Aqsa Flood, I noticed that the Arab media is still largely not playing the role it is supposed to play in backing up the Palestinian cause. Before I address the role that the media is currently playing, that is, after the Al-Aqsa Flood, I will briefly review the historic reality of the Palestinian issue, then the most significant features of the role of the Arab media in general before and after the Al-Aqsa Flood, as well as the role that the Arab media is supposed to play towards the Palestinian issue.

During its long history, which exceeds seventy-five years, the Palestinian question, as officially named in UN statements, has gone through major catastrophes, the first of which is the Nakba of 1948, the second of which is the Nakba of 1967, the third of which is the Nakba of Jerusalem of 2016, and most recently was the Deal of the Century in 2020.

The Palestinian question is an issue of land, people, and stolen rights. The Palestinian issue is linked to the Jewish issue because Judaism is a religion and not a nationality, so the Jews should have been integrated into their countries. However, the West fought the Jews in the communities in which they lived, and the Arabs and Muslims were involved (consciously or unconsciously) in executing the Western plan that aimed to bring them together in Palestine at the expense of its native people.

In fact, this was the strategy of global capitalism to establish an advanced base in Palestine to suppress any national Arab liberation movement facing exploitative capitalism. Therefore, the Palestinian issue is the main central issue (the mother) for Arabs first, for Muslims second, and for humanity as a whole third.

Sectarian conflict and terrorism are nothing but the new global capitalism strategy to divide the Arab world into small states that are easy to control or obstruct their growth and development.

Before the Al-Aqsa Flood operation

By inferring the characteristics of the role played by the Arab media towards the Palestinian issue before the Al-Aqsa flood, the following points shall be noted;

  • The Arab media adopted (consciously or unconsciously) the Zionist statements, the most important of which was that; the Palestinians sold their land and did not struggle for their cause... despite the fact that the Palestinian people did not have the financial ability, were handcuffed, and did not receive serious support from the Arab nations to confront Zionist supremacy in number and equipment.
  • The Arab media promoted the idea that the Palestinians left their land and they were inability to confront Israel and America as militarily superior countries, that is, they promoted the notion of surrender and the lack of serious resistance.
  • The Arab media used terminology on the basis that it insults Israel as an occupying state without realizing that it is promoting Zionist terminology, such as calling it (the Hebrew state), which means that the Jews are those crossing the Euphrates River and that their origin is from Iraq, which was is the saying promoted by the Zionists that they are a nationality that crossed over from Iraq and Jordan. In fact, historical references indicate that the Jews came from the Khazar state in the Caspian Sea in the Volga River Delta region. They, that is, the Jews, came in the year 802 from Iran under the leadership of Rabbi Abadi - as mentioned by Dr. Mohammad Ali Odeh.
  • The Arab media was not fully aware of the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict, starting with the resistance of the Palestinians and their great sacrifices in this regard, and did not know the extent of the sacrifices they made, as the Palestinians sacrificed seven thousand martyrs in the Great Arab Revolt in the years 1936-1939, which was the revolution of (Izz Al-Din). Al-Qassam).
  • Worse than that, the Arab media focused on the fact that Israel defeated seven Arab armies without clarifying the fact that the number of all Arab armies at that time was less than 25 thousand soldiers, and the Arab armies were guard soldiers compared to 100 thousand well-armed Zionist fighters, of which 20 thousand, were called the Jewish Legion in Britain during World War II.

Accordingly, the Arabs were suffering from a poor armament and insufficient military supplies. They did not have ammunition to the point that the Palestinian leader (Abdul Qader Al-Husseini) was forced to abandon weapons in order to take ammunition from Syria for traditional cannons. In contrast, the Jews had the arms industry in the settlements in addition to Western support with the weapons that they smuggled to them. 

  • The Arab media did not refer to the glorious pages in the history of stubborn Palestinian resistance in 1948, Land Day 1976, the Stone Intifada in 1987, and all the bright pages in the history of the Palestinian struggle, except in a reportage style, focusing more on Israel’s power in suppressing those successive revolutions.
  • When the Arab regimes disagree with the Palestinians, the Palestinians are portrayed as fighters of five-star hotels, as the Arab media focuses on mercenary people and trading in the Palestinian cause in order to provide an excuse for the Arab regimes not to support the Palestinians.
  • The Arab media has also been promoting the concept that Arabs are fighting for Palestine, and this is a distortion of the truths. In fact, we are not only fighting for Palestine, but we are also fighting for our Arab identity in the face of the Zionist project that plans to control the entire Arab world.
  • The Arab media adopts statements including that the Jews have the right to establish their own state, and that Israel is a democratic state... as if the media equates what the Israeli occupation is doing with what the resistance is doing to defend its land.
  • As for the role of the Arab media regarding the issue of moving the American embassy to Jerusalem, the Arab media did not cover the large demonstrations in the West Bank and Jerusalem as it should. It did not also shed light over the American role in supporting Israel. Instead, the Arab media contributed to promoting the deal of the century.
  • The Arab media also tried, through the Deal of the Century, to abolish the religious conflict between Muslims and Jews on the basis that they descend from one ethic, as they all belong to our Messenger Abraham, peace be upon him, meaning that it promoted normalization with them in order to please or (for fear of) the allies of Israel, America and Western countries, and to acknowledge that Judaism is a common religion, while Israel does not represent Judaism, but rather Zionism.
The Arab media is still promoting terms and concepts used by the Zionists and the West, for example the term “Gaza envelope”, which should be canceled and called the occupied territories surrounding Gaza, and instead of Israel it should be said “the usurping Zionist entity.”

And after the flood

If we review the ongoing role of the Arab media currently after the Al-Aqsa Flood operation, we will find that it is still a news reporting media that mostly focuses on the crimes of genocide, displacement and siege committed by Israel in the occupied territories, especially Gaza, and portrays the battle as if it were only between Hamas and Israel, which leads to the spread of Sadness and depression among the Arab and Islamic peoples. It also promotes (intentionally or unintentionally) surrender and outshining the spirit of resistance, and that Israel, America and its allies will annihilate the Palestinian people and that they will not survive after that.

In addition, the Arab media echoes Zionist statements that Palestinian resistance prisoners are hostages of Hamas, instead of describing them as prisoners of war, thus portraying Hamas as a terrorist militia and not a Palestinian resistance to the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

Further, the Arab media also does not focus on the losses incurred by the Zionist entity by the Palestinian resistance, and the need to supporting it financially and morally. It repeats the notion of collective punishment and the importance of protecting civilians, as if Israel's devastating bombing of Gaza and civilians, the killing of children and women, and the displacement of the population were caused by what Hamas did through the flood of Al-Aqsa and not an operation that had been planned for many years.

The Arab media is still promoting terms and concepts used by the Zionists and the West, for example the term “Gaza envelope”, which should be canceled and called the occupied territories surrounding Gaza, and instead of Israel it should be said “the usurping Zionist entity.”

Furthermore, the Arab media also continues to restate the term “the conflict between Hamas and Israel,” which is what the Israeli and Western media keep using while the Arab media is supposed to replace it the with the phrase “the conflict between the Palestinian resistance and the occupying Zionist entity.”

The Arab media ignores or downplays what the Palestinian resistance achieved through the Al-Aqsa flood against the Zionist entity and the West, and the exposure of its colonial plans and barbarism. It also did not highlight the significance of the outcomes, on top of which, the radical shift in the course of the Palestinian struggle, as Western public opinion, many Jews, political forces, and human rights activists began to positively interact and support the Palestinian cause and describe Israel as a racist state and occupier of the land of Palestine.

The demonstrations and events in Arab and Western countries were not covered sufficiently in order to mobilize adequate support for the Palestinian cause. For the first time, massive demonstrations flying Palestinian flags took place in various Arab and Western countries and in America itself despite the attempts of Western regimes to suppress them, including Sweden, Canada, Britain and Spain, America, Spain, Germany and many other free countries.

Israeli historian Ilan Pappe also described Hamas as a liberation struggle movement, not a terrorist organization, and many American Hollywood celebrities expressed their solidarity with the Palestinian question.

Additionally, the Social media platforms played a major role in exposing the forces, countries, personalities, and organizations that sided with the Zionist entity, and those sided with the Palestinian question and considered it a just cause for a people whose land have been occupied, and who suffered from oppression, displacement, and segregation.

Because the Palestinian resistance is onging, and it is difficult to make final judgments on the role of the Arab media in supporting the Palestinian cause and standing against the Zionist project, I can put some important points that the Arab media should focus on in dealing with the Al-Aqsa flood, perhaps the most important of which are:

  • The Arab media is supposed to launch a large-scale mobilization campaign to applause the successive Palestinian heroics, the most important of which is the Al-Aqsa flood.
  • The Arab media must contribute to appeasing the internal disputes between the Palestinian brothers in the Hamas and Fatah movements, and for all the Palestinians to be victorious for Palestine and promote everything that would bring the Palestinian factions closer together, for example but not limited to: highlighting the interview conducted with the Palestinian ambassador from the Fatah movement in London, who refused to condemn Hamas and condemned Israel's crimes in Gaza.
  • The Arab media must also expose the Zionist and Western falsehoods and myths, and emphasize on the fact that when the Palestinian people, receive appropriate support they can achieve miracles. An example of this is: in January 1, 1965, when the armed revolution of the Fatah movement was launched, whose slogan was (secular democracy throughout the entire Palestinian territory) with all its factions (Fatah - the Popular Front led by George Habash - the Democratic Front led by Naif Hawatmeh). Also, introducing Bishop Capucci, who was caught by the Israelis smuggling weapons to the Palestinian resistance, and praising him.
  • Arab media has to highlight the Arab support to Palestine, the most important of which is the endless assistance of the late Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser for the Palestinian question, whether in terms of material or moral support.
The Arab media must expose the reality of the Zionist project and the existential conflict within this project of Western European and American origins, and the bloody confrontations with the Arab national project, which embodies the legitimate rights of the Arab peoples, the owners of the land and history and the makers of the cultural heritage in this part of the world.
  • The Arab media must also condemn Israel’s prevention of the call to prayer from mosques in Jerusalem, as the churches presented the call to prayer many years ago, which demonstrates the unity of the national struggle of the Palestinian people. Therefore, the Arab media should focus on the unity of the Arab nationalist struggle against Israel and America.
  • The word “Israel” or “Israeli territories” should not be repeated in Arab media reports, but rather the "occupied Palestinian territories". If Israel recognizes Palestinian rights to establish the State of Palestine on the 1976 borders with Jerusalem as its capital, then the Arabs may admit the State of Israel in light of the peace agreement.
  • The Arab media must appeal to all Arab countries to mobilize all their true friends and allies in the United Nations General Assembly to grant the Palestinians full membership in the United Nations, even if they are under occupation.
  • The Arab media must focus on constantly introducing the Palestinian issue, calling for the establishment of a common Arab market in preparation for the establishment of a federal union, and developing joint Arab projects, and clarifying the significance of this common market for the advantage of every Arab country, especially since we are in the world of major economic coalitions. Therefore, the Arab common market will create interests and benefits between Arab countries and eliminate the differences planted by colonialism.
  • The Arab media should focus on raising awareness among Arab and international audience that religious sectarian conflicts within each Arab country or between Arab countries are created and provoked by the Zionist entity throughout different historical periods, while supporting this message with historical and current evidence.
  • The Arab media must differentiate between issues of national liberation and terrorism, and focus on national reconciliation between Palestinian factions.
  • Emphasis must also be placed on distinguishing between the common interests of Arabs and political differences, so that priority is given to common interests and bringing closer viewpoints on the issue of political differences.
  • Arab media discourse, especially directed in English, must reach Western and American public opinion to gain its sympathy for the Palestinian cause.
  • The Arab media supposed to uncover the reality of the Zionist project and the existential conflict between this project of Western European and American origins and the bloody confrontations between it and the Arab national project, which embodies the legitimate rights of the Arab peoples, the owners of the land and history and the makers of the cultural heritage in this part of the world.

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