Let the Arabs sleep

We’re excited to receive another article by Ikhras’ friend, the eloquent Ms. Roqayah Chamseddine. Roqayah is a Lebanese-American humanitarian activist. She is an undergraduate student majoring in Political Science/Pre-Law and Journalism. She was a member of the Gaza Freedom March last December in Cairo.

Ikhras Comment: If , as Roqayah points out in this article, the Arab people’s excuse for not rebelling against tyranny is the “emergency laws” of oppressive police states, what’s the excuse for Arab-Americans?  Why are Arab-Americans busy preparing galas at which illegitimate rulers, princes, kings, and oil-sheiks are featured guests and keynote speakers? The Arab Mukhabarat don’t dare operate in the banquet rooms of of Washington DC hotels, and they are too busy keeping an eye on their domestic opposition. More Arab-Americans are increasingly willing to speak out against those whom the ADC and ATFP “honor” at their galas, banquets, and festivals, and Ikhras.com pledges to be their platform.

Ah the Arabs; the inventors of hummus, the culinary architects of falafil, the loud and seemingly obnoxious lovers of football. When they aren’t watching Star Academy, listening to a concord of deluded music by vapid artists or brushing up on their français they are sound asleep – dreaming of shopping in Beirut Mall, dancing in taste-less clubs or uploading a mountain of photos onto Facebook. Très chic, no?

What else is there to fret about? What more is there to care for?

We have our Haifa’s, Nancy’s and Hosni’s. We don’t care for your Barghouti’s, Salah’s and Corrie’s.

Let the Arabs sleep as the rest of us wipe the tears from our cheeks in the middle of the night, laying restless and shaken. Let the Arabs sleep and snore through the screaming of our mothers and the wailing of our fathers. After-all, they are helpless and cannot act – at least that is their excuse.

– You see we are living under ‘Emergency Law’!

Bl rooh,bl dam nafdeek ya shu? Ya Falasteen?

– Don’t you know, we cannot speak one ill word against our King or Queen! Don’t you know the reprecussion?

– Sure, there are millions of us, but what can we do? We are just people after-all!

The Arabs are full of excuses,unlike, for example, the Turks. The people of Turkey have shown more courage than the useless body of Arabs preoccupied with their iPod and iPads and iDiocy.

The activists aboard the Flotilla’s to Gaza some months ago did what no Arab community has done for over 60 years,since the illegal creation of the Zionist entity known as “Israel”.

Bl rooh, bl dam nafdeek ya shu? Ya Falasteen? No. Nafdeeki ya Queen Rania, Nafdeek ya King Abdallah, Nafdeek ya Obama.

Those are the ‘leaders’ our people turn to in times of great trials and tribulations.

The Arabs, in their unwavering apathy – are aiding Israel.

How much longer can Palestine be strangled while the Arabs of the world watch and wait for a “chance to act”. Another massacre? More bodies?

Must the Mediterranean sea turn red for the Arabs to act?

No, I doubt even then they will muster the courage to abide by the empty phrases they throw around at rallies and protests – the general populace are simply reactionaries. They are more than willing to shout out that they will die for Palestine during a moment where they are most secure, away from death.

So, as you head out the door do not slam it – do not shout – do not scream. After-all, we don’t wish to wake the Arabs.

  14 comments for “Let the Arabs sleep

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  8. marc
    September 27, 2010 at 4:23 AM

    such conviction, bleeding emotion and precision, thank you Ms. Chamseddine for this powerful critique, and thank you ikhras for existing.

  9. DrM
    September 27, 2010 at 1:34 AM

    As usual sister Roqayah is on target. Her writing just gets better and better. BTW Ikhras team, perhaps a feature on the phonies of “Mideast Youth” is in order.

    • December 27, 2012 at 10:46 AM

      I grew up in an old family, in a tnoritiadal christian southern home, which means there was a subtle tinge of racism that ran through our society. I mean no one was in the KKK or anything, but you just did not associate with people of other colors. Even though the Jim Crow laws had been lifted a generation earlier, separation was still present, on a voluntary basis .they had their churches and events, and we had ours. The best friend (African American) I met in college had lived 2 miles away from me my entire life, but we never met until we were several hundred miles away at school, because of the social segregation in our city. I rejected my family’s awkward prejudice at a young age because it seemed so, frankly, stupid.I was the girl in high school who could wander freely from one group to another and always feel welcome I had jock friends, artsy friends, nerdy friends, goth friends, rebel friends .I was both the cheerleader and the drama geek My friendships as I have grown still encompass a wide variety. I have always enjoyed meeting people from widely different backgrounds. Today I have friends who religiously range from neo-pagan to conservative christian education-wise from high school to multiple PH.D.’s from Harvard single people, single moms, and people married with children I have friends who have never left their home state and friends who have been to more countries than I can count.What matters to me in a friendship is a person’s heart: kindness, loyalty, respect, sense of self, the ability to both have really meaningful conversation AND laugh til we cry. I am an inquisitive person and I like to hear people’s stories.The one thing that turns me off in a friendship is ignorance blind prejudice toward others.So yes: I would (and have) extend the arm of friendship to Arabs, I look at people as individuals not as a group. If an individual was really sweet and funny and thoughtful I would call her my friend; if she was nasty and hateful toward me or others, I would avoid her. Although I will say, I sometimes get an awkward vibe from Arab women when I approach them, maybe it is because they are so used to dealing with American idiots who equate the idea of Arab or Muslim with terrorism VA:F [1.9.20_1166]

  10. Mustafa
    September 24, 2010 at 6:10 PM

    Roqayah is amazing. It’s women like her who will liberate Al Quds. Between the Fakih article and this gem I honesty have to say that sister Roqayah is a genuine diamond amongst many fakes. Please tell me you all plan to add her to your list of editors!

    Keep up the great work Roqayah.

    • Ikhras
      September 25, 2010 at 2:38 AM


      We agree and have asked Roqayah to continue sending us her articles. We look forward to featuring more of her writing on Ikhras.


      • Juanasmith27@yahoo.com
        September 30, 2015 at 5:06 AM

        My advice to you : as you head out of the door – slam it hard; shout loudly ; scream agonily . After-all, the dorks are dead and they can not hear !

      • Juanasmith27@yahoo.com
        September 30, 2015 at 5:06 AM

        My advice to you : as you head out of the door – slam it hard; shout loudly ; scream agonily . After-all, the dorks are dead and they can not hear !

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