Palestine has a museum. But it’s empty

Yes, the National Museum of the Palestinian People, opened yesterday in Bir Zeit near Ramallah after almost 20 years of preparation, will be very interesting.

We use the future tense because, although the large W-shaped building (W stands for victory) has already cost 28 million dollars and sparkles in glass and stone, still contains nothing. Is this a lapse due to the intention of having just to construct a virtual history that scratches out the Jewish one?

The only sure thing at the moment is that the inaugural exhibition has been called off due to disputes between the Museum’s executive board and the former director, who has been fired. The new one, Jack Persekian, had nothing ready yet.

There will come a time, however, when many foreign visitors will be regaled with the full force of the famous Palestinian “narrative” that has gone to so much trouble to wipe out the truth about the Jewish history of Israel, in order to replace it with an invention whereby the Palestinians exist as a historical people of the area and that the Jews just happened to come upon that land, and actually only to cause sufferance to the Palestinians.

The museum will tell a fantastic tale that brushes away from the Mount, where the Mosques stand today, the First (Solomon’s) and the Second Jewish Temples, one of the wonders of the ancient world, described in so many historical chronicles,and King David’s Jerusalem, and the people that conceived monotheism just in their march to Israel, and the Jewish Jesus Christ so as to put a Palestinian one in his place … It will wipe out Haj Amin Al Hussein’s friendship and alliance with Hitler so as to make him the first hero of the resistance against the colonial and evil invader; it will define as illegal the birth of the State of Israel, and will reject the resolutions of the League of Nations whose 51 members declared their consent to see the establishment of the “Jewish National Home” while recognising this people’s link to the land;and will reject the UN’s partition planthat triggered a war of aggression; it will portray as a situation of fear and of necessity the voluntary escape of the arab refugees invited to leave and then come back victorious by the Arab states, while Ben Gurion asked the Palestinians to stay and create the new State together; and so on, trying to demonstrate, above all, that terrorism is equivalent to the fight for freedom and that the terrorists that killed innocent people – such as the athletes in Munich, the children of Maalot, or the victims of the Second Intifada -in actual fact are heroes.

It will be a museum full of hidden truths, such as the education in homicide via the official press and televisionand school textes, of so many children and young Palestinians. Another thing that will be missing, for example, will be the yet historical Hamas Charter that asks that all Jews be killed in the name of the Koran and the daily exaltation of terrorists. Israel’s right to defence shall be pictured as a crime.

But, alas, this is only scanty deductive logic, and who knows, is there a possibility that we will be disproved by a pleasant surprise?

This article originally appeared in slightly different form in Italian in Il Giornale ( 19 May, 2016)

About the Author
Fiamma Nirenstein is a journalist, author, former Deputy President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, and member of the Italian delegation at the Council of Europe.
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