Al-Quds Will Endure!
Al-Ayaam, Ramallah, July 12
Last week, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman signed an order designating the Palestinian satellite news channel Al-Quds as a terrorist organization, and ordered its closure. This would not be the first time that the Occupation is trying to target this channel. It has done so multiple times in the past. It is important to note that, today, dozens of news channels and radio stations operate in the occupied West Bank. Generally speaking, the Occupation agrees to provide them with permits in an attempt to protect Israel’s label as the so-called “only democracy” in the Middle East. However, when a news channel occasionally upsets an Israeli official—either by confronting them with the truth, or by airing controversial footage—then it often jeopardizes its ability to stay in business. The Al-Quds channel has certainly been the target of Israeli threats and intimidation. Despite repeated Israeli attempts to blackmail station officials, the Palestinian channel remained steadfast in its commitment to pushing the Palestinian narrative of the conflict into the fore. It provided live documentation of the Palestinians’ daily struggles under the brutal hand of the Occupation. It followed the situation in Gaza during four wars with the Occupation Forces. Since its launch in 2008, the station has been extremely successful at gaining a wide following in the Arab world; an accomplishment that clearly irritated and worried the Israeli minister of defense. When the station’s offices in Ramallah were sacked by the Occupation a few years ago, its employees quickly regrouped and returned to their jobs. When the station’s offices in Jerusalem were closed overnight, its dedicated reporters worked from their homes and brought live coverage from makeshift locations. This is why I know with certainty that Al-Quds will continue to prevail and thrive, despite this most recent decision by the Occupation Forces to shut it down. Al-Quds has become synonymous with the Palestinian Resistance. And just like the Resistance, it cannot be brought down by a court order. It lives in the hearts and minds of the Palestinian public, and it shall endure and prevail despite the will to silence it. –Ahmad Hajj Ali