Morocco’s success has breathed new life into a once-lost identity, as individuals from throughout the Arab world celebrated the group’s victories.
“Folks had mentioned that Arab nationalism was lifeless, we’re not united anymore,” North African soccer skilled Maher Mezahi instructed CNN. “The Olympics, Algeria’s run within the 2014 World Cup, and particularly now this, as trivial of a notion because it appears, it exists, and we’re seeing it manifest in actual time.”
The Palestinian trigger, which is central to the identification of many Arabs all over the world, has been omnipresent within the stadiums and on the streets throughout this event.
When the Moroccan group posed with the unmistakable tricolor flag throughout their celebrations, the trigger – which helps Palestinian self-determination – benefited from the oxygen of a world media platform.
A Monday evening stroll via Qatar’s Souq Waqif revealed soccer followers from everywhere in the area who have been draped in each the Palestinian and Moroccan flags.
CNN spoke with 15-year-old boys from Syria and Egypt, 17-year-old ladies from Sudan, a person from Algeria and one other from the occupied West Financial institution metropolis of Nablus. “All Arab international locations, from the Gulf to the ocean, are one physique,” mentioned Anwar Ramadan, who walked via the Souq with a “Free Palestine” scarf round his shoulders. He instructed CNN that he wears the flag in order that the remainder of the world can see that “Palestine is current in each nook.”
“We hope that Arab leaders might be able to uniting this area in the identical approach that the Emir of Qatar was capable of unite all Arabs on this nation throughout the World Cup,” Ramadan mentioned.
Amro Ali, a Sociology professor on the College of Casablanca, argued that Qatar has given supporters of the Palestinian trigger an “unfiltered and unmediated” house, the place they may categorical solidarity with the plight of Palestinians in occupied territories.
In 2020, Morocco was certainly one of 4 Arab international locations to normalize relations with Israel, departing from a long-time regional coverage that conditioned normalization on ending the Israeli occupation of the West Financial institution and Gaza, the place Israel nonetheless maintains a blockade alongside Egypt. Sweeping shows of solidarity with Palestinians highlights the disconnect between these governments’ official positions and continued hostility in the direction of Israel.
“If something, [the World Cup] has proven the stark distinction between the rulers and the dominated, between the regimes and the publics,” he mentioned. “Palestine has not been forgotten.”