Meet Mudar Zahran, pro Israel palestinian.
Mudar Zahran, a lecturer, publicist and Palestinian blogger attends international seminar on new media and public diplomacy given by the Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Ministry at Ariel University Center in Samaria, speaks to Israel Hayom about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
“Actually, most of the Palestinians are angry with and hate their Arab ‘brothers’ more than they are angry with or hate the Jews. I have never heard about a Palestinian woman dying of cancer and one of the neighboring Arab countries, Lebanon for example, helping her. But I’ve heard of plenty of cases where hospitals in Israel have offered help,” said Mudar Zahran, 39, a lecturer and publicist — and a Palestinian blogger — in an interview with Israel Hayom. Zahran participated in an international seminar on new media and public diplomacy given by the Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Ministry this week.
One might have expected such statements to come from a Jewish Israeli right-winger, not necessarily an extremist. But anyone who knows Zahran and attended the seminar, which was held in cooperation with the Ariel University Center of Samaria (which offers advanced studies in new media toward a bachelor’s degree) was not at all surprised. This is not the first time Zahran has judged Israel favorably while speaking against the Arab states when it comes to the Palestinian question (just ask Jordan, which he accuses of practicing apartheid in one of his essays).
Zahran attended the seminar together with bloggers from all over the world: Israel, the United States, Denmark, Turkey, Switzerland, the Netherlands, France and other places. The bloggers included Muslims, Christians and Jews alongside Bedouin and Druze. Zahran himself, a citizen of the U.K. (along with other Palestinians from London), completed the picture, which is considered out of the ordinary, just like his opinions.
Zahran’s family is originally from east Jerusalem. His parents left after hearing on Egyptian radio that the Jews intended to slaughter all the Arabs remaining there. They reached Jordan, settled and raised their children there until they realized that their different, modern opinions were not suited to where they were living. They moved to the U.K., where they knew that their children would receive a better education.
Despite the distance, Zahran never stopped thinking about the Palestinian people. He explains why he expresses his unusual opinions.
“I don’t do it because I choose to, but rather because most of the people think this way and only I have the privilege of speaking out because I’m a British citizen. Most of my people think as I do, but they’re afraid to say so.” Zahran even went back to Jordan briefly to marry a Palestinian woman. He has also made sure to keep in contact with his cousins, some of whom work in Israel or are in prison here.
Nothing to worry about, Zahran found no freedom of expression in the Hashemite Kingdom, certainly not to the degree that he enjoys in the U.K. or at the seminar he attended. That the seminar was held at an Israeli academic institution across the Green Line, in Ariel, posed no problem for him.
“I have no problem with Ariel,” says Zahran. “It’s a university that Israel chose to build where it wished, like the Americans build in every state that belongs to them, and nobody says a word about it.”
Read the whole thing.
Update: Here is Mudar arguing Jordan is Palestine.