Arafat, Lost In Translation

So there’s a big fuss over what Yasser Arafat said on Saturday calling on his people to “terrorize your enemy” as he bitterly marked the 56-year anniversary of Israel’s establishment.

Media are saying that he ended the speech with a quote from the Quran.
“Find what strength you have to terrorize your enemy and the enemy of God”

But what that verse from the Quran essentially says is:
“When your enemies come up against you, show them you are prepared to fight with absolutely everything you can muster, in the hope that this will frighten them off. But if they’re willing to make peace, you must make peace with them”

This verse describes how the faithful should respond to the pagan armies threatening to wipe out the nascent Muslim community in Medina.
And nowadays it’s interpreted as an exhortation for them to remain strong under difficult circumstances

So what Arafat is actually saying is that Palestinians should not break under the current events and that they should show that they are strong and will not be stamped on, but that if there is a change of heart on the other side and they want peace, then they should work towards that peace.

Very big difference!
And a very legitimate thing to say, which is consistent with Arafat’s position and the position of most Palestinians.

So basically, the media and Mr. Powell should check their facts before opening up their mouths!

[More: Lawrence of Cyberia]

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