By Ibrahim Ebeid

April 29, 1999

For more than a hundred years the Zionists with their Western allies are launching a racist war against the Arabs and ethnic cleansing is being practiced against the Palestinians every day.

A sizable amount of our beloved land is occupied and its name has been changed from Palestine to Israel. Millions of Palestinians were forced to live in excile and the occupants of their homes are strangers from every part of the Earth.

Our greater homeland was fragmented, was given a new name and we became Middle Eastern people.

Some of us have become attracted to these status quo and have forgotten their heritage and culture. They became Westernized and Western ideology became their admired hope and aspiration..

Some are denying our Nationality and our nationalism has fallen under attack by this segment of our people. Unwisely they are agreeing with the enemy to splinter us further and weaken us more severely. We became Muslim nationals and not Arabs anymore. Sectarian religion is being preached forcibly upon us. Respect to Islam and its heavenly message is being misused in a shallow way to harm our religions, beliefs and aspirations for a brighter future.

These new ideologies are not genuine to us . They are foreign and misfit. I am not calling for isolation, no, not at all. I believe that we are part of the world but like any other nation we have the right to decide our own destiny, we have the right to be united as a single Arab Nation, we have the right to be called Arabs and not Middle Easterners.

The events that are taking place in Algeria, in Palestine and elsewhere in the vast Homeland of ours are really sad and they are the creation of the enemy and the lackeys to keep us fragmented and conquered.

Iraq, our symbol and hope, is being put under the severest blockade ever.The unjust sanctions are strangulating the whole population. This act is an act of genocide created and forcibly maintained by the United States and its partners.

The war against our people in Iraq is being launched for the last nine years by the United States and the United kingdom. The rulers of "Saudi Arabia" and "Kuwait" are using the Arab land and resources to help killing our people in Iraq to protect their selfish interests.

In Lebanon, the Zionists are committing many crimes against our people. South Labanon is being bombarded with no suspension. Since signing of the Oslo agreement between the Zionists and Yasser Arafat in September 1993, more land was confiscated and more settlements were built. More than 230 Mosques were attacked by the Israeli army.

Christian churches have succumbed to Israeli aggression as well. To name some of these violations, I chose a sample, at random, to show our people and the World some of the atrocities and crimes committed against us and our Holy places of worship.

Deir Mar Yuhanna, St.John Convent and church. The Church of Nativity: An Israeli soldier tossed a bomb in the Manger Square on Christmas Day 1994 while the worshipers were praying.

The Church of Ghetesemani was set afire by an Israeli soldier , on May 18,1995 that caused severe damage to the historic site where Jesus was captured to be later crucified 2,000 years ago.

The mosaic floor of the Melekite Catholic Church in Tabaria was ruined by Israeli settlers.

The Anglican Church cemetery in Nablus was desecrated by Zionist settlers. Another Church was set afire in Tabaria also on August 27, 1995.

Al Aqsa Mosque was exposed to many aggressions and attacks, 55 times, here are some samples : On May 26, 1968 Al-Aqsa was set a fire by the Terrorist J.Dohan.

April 11, 1982: A Jewish terrorist, Goldman, attacked Al-Haram Square, killed and wounded more than 60 persons.

August 8,1990, the Israeli Authority massacred 22 persons and wounded more than two hundred.

Many other mosques were converted to Jewish synagogues such as Al-Ahmar Mosque in Safad.

Maqam of the Sahabi, Abu Huraira , in the village of Yebna was converted to a religious site while Az Zaytoun Mosque, in Safad, was converted to a pen for sheep and its upper floor to a farming equipment.

The events that are taking place in Nazareth and elsewhere in Palestine are the creation of the Israeli government to weaken us and press us under the Zionist grip. They pose a grave danger to our nation, our culture and heritage.

It is time for us to be awakened and to take the matter in our own hands.

It is time for us to unify our forces and energies against our enemy who occupies our land and who desecrate our places of worship, our Mosques and Churches.

May God enlighten us and guide us to the straight path and save us from going astray.

Sources: Al-Quds Press- Amin Abu Wardeh Father Labib Kobti-Rep.of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem Al-Moharer - Archives -