I recently spent a night in Belgium doing some research. As soon as I came out of the Brussels Midi Eurostar station I was confronted with a huge image of the Palestinian flag that had been graffitied onto one of the station walls. I took a photo of the flag – and posted it in a tweet – noting my discomfort.
That simple statement of fact – that the Palestinian flag can be viewed as a symbol of hate, went viral – receiving over 3.8 million views – and over 3,280 comments. For several days my notification feed was a tsunami of abuse. Some even suggested that my discomfort made me ‘racist’ or ‘Islamophobic’:
Most of the comments were just mocking. After all they said – ‘it is only a flag’. This is a ridiculous position, more so given that I can think of dozens of examples of ‘only a flag’ that most right-minded individuals (left and right) would find threatening or offensive. Like many emblems of hate – the problem lies in what the Palestinian flag represents – and what many of those waving it support. Only a fool would believe that the person who placed that graffiti on the walls of the Brussels Midi station has any good intentions vis-a-vis Jewish people in Israel.
Ignorance on this subject is everywhere, so here are ten points looking at what the Palestinian flag actually means – and why Jewish people have every right to view it as offensive:
1. The truth hidden in plain sight: 1964
Firstly, let me put the record straight. At the start of the 20th century there was no ‘Palestinian flag’ – just as there was no ‘Palestinian people’. Before the national Palestinian identity was created as a weapon with which to fight Zionism, Arabs under the mandate saw themselves as part of the greater Islamic or Arab nations. In August 1929, while Arabs massacred Jews throughout the British Mandate area, the Arabs in Nablus tried to revolt against the British. Briefly declaring independence, they raised the Turkish flag:
This next clarification was made during the Arab revolt in the late 1930s. That the ‘Arab nationalists fly a variety of flags, generally Islamic green’:
1 continued – the birth of the Palestinian flag
Only in May 1964 when the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) was established, did they fully adopt what we now know as the Palestinian flag – as the flag of the Palestinian people (not the flag of ‘Palestine’, that came later). The PLO also created the ‘Palestinian Liberation Army’ to work towards the ‘ultimate goal of liberating the Arab homeland’. The flag was the banner under which they would unite to destroy Israel:
The flag is based on the flag of the Arab revolt (which is why the flags of so many Arab nations are similar). It was part of the pan-Arab cause, and the colours are in remembrance of Islamic conquests.
This point is reinforced by various Fatah spokespeople, such as this example from 1969. This Al-Fatah ‘commander’ did not care what flag he stood under – as long as it was an Arab one:
In 1964 the Arabs were in total control of the West Bank and Gaza, so the *ONLY* land they could ‘liberate’ was Israel behind the 1949 armistice lines. The very origin of the flag is one that sought the destruction of the Jewish state. This was the sole purpose of its adoption.
2. The age of terror
For six decades the PLO adopted ‘Palestinian flag’ has been associated with the slaughter of Jews and the desire to destroy Israel. Such as this threat from Arafat – as he pointed to the Palestinian flag – promising ‘the flag will fly on the road to Haifa‘ and they would keep their guns ‘raised‘ until they took Jerusalem:
And these were not idle threats. Wherever there was terror and the murder of Jews – the Palestinian flag was present:
In these images – honoured with the Palestinian flag:
- Leila Khaled – a PFLP terrorist and plane hijacker.
- The funeral of Mohammed Oudeh – the mastermind behind the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.
- Celebrating Samir Kuntar – who slaughtered Israeli civilians in a terrorist attack on an apartment block in Nahariya in 1979.
3. London’s streets
The genocidal hatred is not restricted to the Middle East. At anti-Israel gatherings across the west, activists chant chilling Arabic threats about the Islamic slaughter of Jews. And in convoys that drove through Jewish neighbourhoods – threats to ‘rape our daughters’ were made under the banner of the Palestinian flag:
4. The antisemitic violence of BDS
The boycott Israel movement (BDS) – which is linked to genocidal Islamic terror groups – is out to destroy Israel. And we have seen countless examples of the antisemitic violence behind BDS on our streets:
- Thugs armed with sledgehammers smash up factories with ties to Israel.
- In Scotland a business was hounded out of the UK just because the owner had Israeli citizenship.
- British Jews have faced abuse just for going to see Israeli shows.
- Kosher aisles in supermarkets have been targeted.
On one occassion, a 13-year-old Israeli schoolgirl received a cruel BDS reply from a Cambridge academic to an innocent question she had sent about horse breeding.
And every times BDS violence surfaces – it is waving the Palestinian flag:
Many in the west choose to remain blind to the violent message of the boycotters – but like everything else to do with antisemitic hate – the evidence is there in plain sight. Intifadas 1 & 2 saw the murder of 1200+ Israelis. ‘Long live the Intifada’, ‘glory to the intifada’, ‘victory to the intifada’ – all rallying cries for BDS activists waving the Palestinian flag:
5. Replacement ideology and the Palestinian flag
We all know the chant – ‘from the river to the sea’. It is a call for the elimination of the state of Israel. Palestinians are not western progressive liberals, and there is not a single Palestinian political party that truly promotes peace based on a two-state solution. Whether they know it or not the people who sing this are pushing for an Islamist terror state to replace Israel.
6 Union of antisemitic hatred
The Palestinian flag does not stand alone and has nothing to do with democracy. The flag stands alongside those of radical Islamic terror groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah.
Each of these terror groups have issued genocidal threats against the Jewish state – and some had the slaughter of Jews written into their Charters.
And let us not forget the other emblem that the Palestinians have used alongside their flag – cementing a relationship that goes back to WW2, when their leader, the Mufti of Jerusalem sat with Hitler, trying to persuade him to extend his ‘final solution’ to the Jews in the Arab world. Palestinians in Gaza holding up the Palestinian flag with the swastika:
7 The Palestinian flag and the celebration of death
Every time Jews in Israel are murdered – the PLO (Palestinian) flag is raised in celebration. On January 27 2023 – on Holocaust Remembrance day – a terrorist murdered seven Israelis outside a synagogue in Jerusalem. Within minutes celebratory comments flooded social media – many containing the Palestinian flag (trust me, names have temporarily been shielded for good reason):
And after every terrorist attack that slaughters Israelis – sweets are given out in Palestinian towns – accompanied by the Palestinian flag:
8 The antisemites in the west
The anti-Israel movement in the west is fuelled by antisemitic hatred. This is why those like Sarah Wilkinson – years after she was exposed as an antisemite and Holocaust denier – are still favourites of the pro-Palestinian crowd:
Wilkinson is not an outlier. I have written detailed reports covering 100s of such activists – all leading pro-Palestinian activism in the west. Here are two more – Carol Foster (left) and Elleanne Green (right) spreading antisemitic hate on Facebook:
Carol Foster, author of the piece, is a veteran trade unionist and retired member of the RMT. She was also an admin in Palestine Live, one of the largest, and well-connected of the anti-Israel groups on Facebook. Palestine Live contained high-placed representatives from almost every anti-Israel activist organisation. Elleanne Green, the one who liked the poem so much, was the founder of the Palestine Live group. The group was a secret nest that contained hundreds of antisemites. The poem was published inside the group – which contained over 3000 members – and did not receive a single negative comment.
9 A symbol of oppression
Only antisemitism can properly explain the blindness of the progressive left to the reality behind the Palestinian flag. What other reason can explain LGB campaigners standing alongside a symbol that oppresses them. Or unions waving the flag of a movement that denies union power, just as journalists wax lyrical about groups that torture their own colleagues. Western leftists have fallen madly in love with a movement that oppresses an entire population as its leaders line their own pockets with gold.
Because this is the truth: The Palestinians were given the Palestinian flag to deliberately keep them in bondage and to deny them any opportunity to seek a better life. It is perfectly reasonable to argue that the Palestinian flag has done the Arabs of Ramallah and Gaza as much harm as it has done to the Jews.
10 The cancellation of everything else
The world is not a nice place. Whether it is oppression, slavery or war, 100,000s are murdered each year across the globe. 100s of minority groups are oppressed and need attention and help. As many as 360 million Christians experience “high levels of persecution and discrimination.” The list is endless. Meanwhile those groups waving the Palestinian flag are having none of it. They have even captured the world’s largest human rights organisations – leaving them as Israel-obsessed empty shells. The UN, UNHRC and leftist politicians talk about little else. Every cause is appropriated by those waving the flag. If you are not talking about Palestine – your cries will not be heard.
This is what the flag has done. It has rendered the west incapable of dealing with real oppression, wherever it may occur.
Reason to feel uncomfortable
I am always willing to stand alone and tell the truth. Too many in the west have fallen for a dangerous and deceptive cause. The Palestinian flag is currently a symbol of hate.
Those who mock me the loudest are often the secular Jewish hard-left – trapped in their bubble of believing that a progressive, illusory, ‘tikkun olum’, rather than their religion, or state, will save them. My comment on the flag was even referred to as ‘narcissistic‘. There is no future for these type of Jews. Virtue signalling to a crowd that would (and will) turn on them in an instant. It is all about their immediate comfort.
The underlying truth is that there is not a single political Palestinian group that seeks to make genuine peace. If there ever comes a time when people waving the Palestinian flag truly want to make peace with Israel – then my feelings towards the flag may change. Until that day – along with every other Jewish person – I have every right to view it as hostile.
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