Monday, December 5, 2016

Youth Ambassador

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The latest song by Mohammed Assaf–a Palestinian pop star and official United Nations “youth ambassador”–doesn’t leave much to the imagination.

Because, by the final verse of his song “Ya Yumma” (“Oh, Motherland”), he’s basically calling his fellow Palestinians to step up and murder the Jews.

For the good of the homeland, of course.

The song’s music video features interpersed scenes of Assaf singing into a microphone in a recording studio, Palestinian civilians living their day-to-day lives, and Israeli soldiers harming innocent Palestinians and launching bombs on the streets.

The song starts as a patriotic call to action:

“We are the sons of this land… Homeland of the brave…”

Before taking a turn for the more jingoistic:

“We are your soldiers… Be strong, the resistance will win. And victory will come and Al-Aqsa will be free. There is no perseverance like yours in Jerusalem.”

And then, it got slightly more literal (and graphic) about the Israel-Palestine conflict:

“Some were martyred, some were injured, their blood blossomed, and our precious blood is still spilling. We draw the map of independence on our soil.”

By the last verse, Assaf gives up altogether on euphemisms. As the footage of the Israeli soldiers invading Palestinian streets gets increasingly more violent, Assaf sings:

“Salute the determined people who are resisting the occupiers. Fight back until you defeat the aggressor… Oh, motherland, don’t accept the occupier from north till south.”

Assaf, 26, was living in a Gaza Strip refugee village, when he shot to fame in 2013 as the winner of “Arab Idol,” an international singing competition by the creators of “American Idol.”

He was named a regional youth ambassador by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) later that year.

So far, the United Nations has not yet addressed the controversy of Assaf’s latest “hit.”

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