See you soon, Mohammed

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Here is the translation of the article about Mohammed Zoabi I wrote for the Portuguese press
Thanks to Lisandro Castro for the translation. Please read and share!

See you soon, Mohammed

by Romeu Monteiro

Hi Mohammed,

I know it is foolish to write you here, but I have no other way of contacting you since you shut down your Facebook page, due to the numerous threats of violence and death you have received. I’m also writing here because I don’t know what else to do to help you. There’s a chance you will be better protected if more people know your story and who’s to blame in case something happens to you.

I met you a few years ago through Facebook because we both liked Israel — your country. I realized that, even though you live in the Arab city of Nazareth and you have many Arab friends and family, you love Israel and you love being Israeli, as you keep saying loud and clear. You explained to me that several Arabs taught you to hate Israel and the Jews. Even so, you decided to investigate for yourself and you met many Jewish people who showed no hatred against you, only openness and generosity. You say you are lucky to live in a democratic, tolerant and developed country in the Middle East, a stable country, free of the oppression and bloodshed you see in the Arab countries around you. You attend a Jewish school and you speak Hebrew fluently, in addition to Arabic and English. There is almost no day that goes by without you sharing a photo in school with your Jewish classmates or hanging out with your Arab friends.

Things started getting complicated when some Israeli journalists took photos and videos from your wall without your permission and showed them on television. It was the first time you received threats and shut down your page. All because, in addition to being a Muslim who defends Israel, you are also the cousin of one of the most famous Israeli Arab MPs in the country — Haneen Zoabi — famous for her virulently anti-Israel speeches, as well as for defending and justifying the acts of terrorists who regularly attack Israel and its inhabitants. The appetite of the press for a juicy family feud did the rest of the work, and your MP cousin wasted no time insulting you in the “media” while many other Arabs were saying much worse and serious things against you.

But you are not like those people, and when you heard that those three Israeli students had been kidnapped last Friday by Palestinian terrorists, you were the first to condemn the kidnapping, whilst your cousin publicly defended the terrorists. You posted a video on the Internet in Hebrew, Arabic and English, demanding the immediate release of the hostages and telling the Prime Minister of Israel to stop cooperating with the Palestinian government, which in your view are the biggest terrorists of all. You said they do not distinguish between Arabs and Israeli Jews. You added that this time those three boys were the ones being kidnapped, but next time it could be yourself. And that was what almost happened next.

Your page was shut down once more. News reports say that three men in your family were arrested because they threatened you. They were planning to take you to Jenin — a town controlled by the Palestinian government — and once there, they were going to harm you. Since then, authorities have put you under police protection, and even your school is under surveillance. Someone posted a message — supposedly yours — saying that you have decided to become more discreet, even though you will continue to defend your country and peace between Jews and Arabs.

I’m worried about you. I do not know what else to do, so I wrote this text.

I hope no one hurts you, but that one day you’ll be the MP of the family. 
I hope no one kills you, but that one day you’ll become President of Israel.

The world desperately needs people like you. 

Be safe. See you soon, Mohammed.

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