Palestinian history began with Arafat
Except all the Jewish stuff. Though Palestinian Arab spokespeople have a history of claiming that Jesus was a Palestinian. (His mother and grandmother presumably were another story.)
So far I'm just seeing an Arafat mural. And that makes sense because the project is probably another glorification bid by Arafat's unelected band of militias who insist on calling themselves a government even though their president refuses to stand for an actual election.
And because Palestinian history began with Arafat.
As many as 25 Palestinian artists are working on what could be the crowning artistic achievement of their lives – and the Arab world's largest-ever mural.
But for the artists working on the unfinished project, the 1,000-square-meter mural, dubbed "Huna Canaan" ("Here is Canaan"), isn't just a painting. Rather, it's an illustration of more than 3,500 years of Palestinian history.
In a tediously predictable bait and switch, local Arabs are claiming to be Palestinians... and Canaanites. Considering that the latter are long extinct and the former were never a people.
Some Zionists did flirt with a regional Canaanite identity that would unite them and the Arabs together. It was a rather stupid idea considering that neither Jews nor Arabs are Canaanites and that the history of Israel began with a long struggle with the Canaanites, interrupted by Egyptian slavery, that concluded with their eventual expulsion.
But the Canaanites were at least a people. Which is more than can be said for the Palestinians, which is, in the most optimistic pro-Palestinian take, is still a reference to another non-Arabic people.
The Palestinian Arabs claiming to be Canaanites is like Elizabeth Warren claiming to be Native American. It's worse, because the Arab conquests took place at a much later date.
We're talking about a bunch of invaders who started flocking to the area in Roman and Post-Roman times, a process that accelerated with the Mohammedan conquests, claiming to be an ancient people who were long extinct by the time they got there.
So it's actually more like a Muslim immigrant to South America claiming to be an Aztec.
"We're artists coming from all over Palestine with a message of freedom that we would like to deliver to the entire world," the group's coordinator Areeg Thawabi told Anadolu Agency.
Nothing says freedom like a totalitarian state whose leaders arrest critics and refuse to hold elections.
The mural begins with a scene of a Canaanite woman working on the land. "Canaan" is the oldest name associated with the land of Palestine.
Other scenes portray the "Nakba" (the dispossession of the Palestinians and concurrent establishment of Israel), the Intifada and the occupation of the holy city of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), along with a painting dedicated to late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.
So they've got an imaginary Canaanite woman, painted to look like a contemporary Arab woman, and then what.... 1948 and the founding of Israel?
That certainly covers 3,500 years. By skipping over them.
Still we can't expect the Great Palestinian Artists to cover anything after the Canaanites and before the Muslim conquests. That's a pretty big gap.
And if you get rid of Moses and Joshua, King David and King Solomon, the two kingdoms of Israel and Judea, the prophets, the exiles and the wars, you end up with a Muslim conquest and then centuries of nothing as the place becomes a backward province, the Crusades, and then more centuries of nothing.
The only reasons why anyone even knows that Israel exists is because of Jewish history. Without Jewish history, you've got an anonymous Canaanite woman... and Arafat.
And the only reasons anyone except for archeologists knows the Canaanites is because of their biblical conflict with the Jews. And the only reason anyone knows Arafat? Because he fought the Jews.
Even radically censored Palestinian Arab Muslim history revolves around the indigenous people whose existence the descendants of Muslim conquerors keep unsuccessfully trying to censor.