Saeb Erekat Buried in Jericho
By Micah Halpern
Wednesday November 11, 2020
I've Been Thinking:
Saeb Erekat was buried in Jericho. I know the cemetery, it is a fitting resting place for this illustrious Palestinian, lined with desert date palms - an oasis.
Erekat was one of the most recognized figures in the Palestinian media world. He was 65 years old when he succumbed to COVID. His burial coincided with the 16th anniversary of Yasser Arafat’s death. Also fitting.
Erekat was Arafat’s most trusted English spokesman and chief negotiator. More than simply an insider, 16 years ago he was thought to be a potential successor to Arafat. But the position went to Mahmud Abbas and once again he was in the successor position, to one day take over the Palestinian reins, this time from Abbas.
I had many interactions with Erekat, mostly on air, at times in person. Erekat was a propagandist for Arafat and the PA, a propogandist par excellence.
Erekat understood the media. He understood the role of the media and its importance, even if it meant engaging in total falsehoods, as long as the Palestinian story would be told. He knew that when you fall off the “front page” you become irrelevant.
And that is the misfortunate of the end of his life. These past few years the Palestinian issue has become less central. The once great legacy of Saeb Erekat was lost. His death is not headline news.
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12 November 2020 09:27 AM in Thoughts
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