Sunday, December 15, 2019

On Saturday a "Palestinian Canaanite Conference" was held in the Mahmoud Darwish Museum in Ramallah.

At the conference, Palestinian prime minister Mohamed Shtayyeh claimed that the Palestinians are descendants of the Canaanites.

There is no historic evidence of this claim. But Shtayyeh seems to know this, because at the same time he said that this is a war of "narratives."

 "We launched this conference because Israel is waging a systematic war against us. Of all those wars -  geography, demography, water and money - the most dangerous is the war of the narratives."

Shtayyeh continued, "All the excavations under the Aqsa Mosque, the settlers' attacks on the Ibrahimi Mosque [Cave of the Patriarchs], Joseph's Tomb, and the enactment of the Law of Nationalism all relate to the war of the narratives."

In other words, the entire purpose of the conference was to push the fiction that Palestinians are Canaanites, because even the Torah admits that the land was Canaanite before the Israelites conquered it. Identifying as Canaanite allows Palestinians to claim that not only were they there before the Jews, but that the Jews had expelled them thousands of years ago.

Even more absurdly, Shtayyeh claimed that the modern Palestinians still worshiped Baal as their alleged ancestors did: "Baal was the most important god among the Canaanites, and we to this day call on his name when we pray for water for the land which is watered from rain water."

Worshipers of Baal were known for other things he might not wish to be associated with.

Engraving of Baal Pe'or, defecating

UPDATE: Shtayyeh ("Winter") is a relatively rare name for Palestinians. I see a Shtayeh family centered in northern Egypt and a Syrian Bedouin tribe with that name in the 19th century.

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