First Published 22 May '16..
The Arabs who now call themselves Palestinians have a national anthem. Actually, their current anthem is supposedly their second. The lyrics of the first were written in 1934 by Ibrahim Tuqan and expressed opposition to the British presence in the Ottoman Empire. Named “Mawtini”, meaning “Homeland”, it talks about gaining independence from the British and overcoming the humiliation of occupation (by the British) and fear of takeover by the Jews.
While some claim that this was a “Palestinian” anthem, it was, in fact, popular throughout the Arab world and there is nothing to suggest that it was specifically “Palestinian” except for the “Palestinian” who wrote the lyrics (an Egyptian wrote the tune). In 2004, it was adopted by Iraq as their national anthem.
You can hear the uplifting music of Mawtini, here:
Then Came Fida’i
There is confusion about the exact date, but sometime in the late 1980s to mid-1990s, the PLO adopted Fida’i as the “Palestinian” anthem. I am sure that you, like me, naturally assume that this new anthem speaks of love for the land, love for Jerusalem, the Palestinian soul’s longing for peace and equality.
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