Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network mourns the passing of Nader Abuljebain, Palestinian writer and lifelong activist, in California on 11 August 2019. Nader Abuljebain was born in 1950 to Palestinian parents from Yafa, occupied Palestine, and attended school in Kuwait before university in the United States.
He lived between the United States and Kuwait throughout his life, and he was a dedicated activist for Palestine and a strong exponent of the Right of Return movement. He was an early member of Al-Awda, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, in the United States, where he organized together with many activists across generations who continue to mobilize for Palestine today, including those involved with Samidoun.
He was a strong leader in the anti-war movement, especially the widespread protests against the U.S. war on Iraq and the 2006 Israeli war on Lebanon, and frequently spoke at demonstrations representing the Free Palestine Alliance.
He participated in numerous conventions and international mobilizations in support of Palestine and the Palestinian people, and he always held his eyes fixed on return, signing his messages tirelessly, “Until return, Hatta al-Awda.”
His work lives on in his book, “Palestinian History in Postage Stamps,” documenting the historical legacy of postage stamps in Palestine, including Ottoman stamps, Egyptian stamps, British mandate stamps, stamps produced by the Palestinian resistance and the PLO, stamps produced to support the Palestinian people around the world and other postage documents that represent the history of the Palestinian people, with extensive documentation in Arabic and English.
His legacy also lives on in the continuing work of so many who learned from and worked with him throughout his life, remaining committed to his clear vision: the liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea.
As he wrote, “The very fact of our continued existence in the face of the world’s longest standing and horrific occupation is living testimony to the heroism of our people. This process has given the newer generations a pride of their ancestry and heritage and the momentum and strength to resist inside Palestine and in exile. Under the leadership of Palestinian community-based groups, we must all assume a larger role in cultural activism focusing on the Right of Return, and reminding the world that colonial ‘Israel’ was not established on an empty piece of land but rather its imposition was based on a slow genocide and expulsion of the Palestinian Arabs, and the expropriation of the Arab Palestinian land. Anywhere in the world people know they live on the land, but for the Palestinians their land lives in them. They are inextricably and intimately linked to that space and that land in all of Arab Palestine. There will be no lasting peace in the region UNLESS that link, that organic unity between the exiled Palestinians and their homeland, is restored. It is at the core of the Palestinian struggle.”
Rest in power, Nader Abuljebain!