Amsterdam mural highlights Basil al-Araj’s legacy for Palestinian liberation struggle

On 27 February, Revolutionaire Eenheid and Samidoun Netherlands put up a mural honoring Basil al-Araj, the Palestinian intellectual revolutionary who was martyred by Israeli occupation forces on 6 March 2017. As Samidoun we support all initiatives commemorating the life of Basil al-Araj.

Basil al-Araj was a widely known activist and youth leader in Palestine, who has been remembered as “the martyr of pen and bullet”.

During his life, Basil played an important role in connecting activists from all parts of Palestine. He gave historic tours of Palestine to hundreds of people, was a pharmacist, and organized and participated in hundreds of protests, clashes and boycott actions. He wrote about the need for a self-confident youth establishing a revolutionary alternative to the current status-quo.

As Revolutionaire Eenheid wrote in their statement commemorating al-Araj:

“Basil was the embodiment of the culture and morals of Palestinian society during the first intifada. Sacrifice and the collective, rather than self-serving and consumerism. His work criticizes the lack of morals and principles, the consequences of feelings of inferiority and colonized thinking that he observed in his environment.

Al-Araj argued that politics is not about getting a well-paid job, where you can also do something good for the world. Politics is about struggle and sacrifice. A struggle against the apartheid era, without compromising with the occupier.

Basil’s politics were not limited to words. When the occupier wanted to arrest him again, he fought back bravely. With a single weapon and an unlimited amount of courage, he fought for his life for over two hours.

Basil’s vision for a Palestine free from occupation, oppression, racism, Zionism, colonialism, and apartheid cannot be stopped by any army. Our global struggle continues, his vision becomes reality!”