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January 28, 2004

ONCE PALESTINIAN, NOW ISRAEL SUPPORTER

As it is titled,
an interesting story indeed about a man who grew up as a Palestinian molded to hate Jews and then grew out of it. Not great revelations for anyone payig attention, but a valuable insight nevertheless.

Also at IsraelNationalNews.com.

From PLO Terrorist to Lover of Zion
       In stark contrast to the PLO songs he recited growing up, with words like, ''Sharpen my bones into swords and make my flesh into Molotov cocktails,'' Shoebat, now 44, sings a very different tune.

       Walid Shoebat’s visit to the University of Toronto, together with Israel National Radio’s Tovia Singer, was but the latest of the former terrorist’s endeavors on behalf his latest cause: Israel and the Jewish people.  Shoebat has related his extraordinary journey over the airwaves and before audiences across North America, encouraging people to ''wake up and smell the hummus'' before Islam succeeds in implementing its program of global Jihad.

      Born in 1960 to an Arab Muslim father and an American Christian mother, Walid grew up mainly in the village of Beit Sahour, near Bethlehem.  His parents met while his father was studying in the United States, married, and returned to Jordanian-controlled Beit Sahour the year Walid was born. Once there, his father confiscated his mother's passport and prevented her from leaving.  After a brief stint in Saudi Arabia, the Shoebats moved to Jericho, where the young Walid was enrolled in a Jordanian-run school.

       ''The first thing we learned growing up was to hate Jews,'' Walid recalled.  ''I’ll never forgot the first song I learned in school, ‘Arabs our beloved and Jews our dogs.’  I used to wonder at that time who the Jews were, but repeated the words with the rest of the kids without any knowledge of the meaning.''

       Soon after the Six-Day-War, his father transferred him to a school in Bethlehem ''where I grew in the faith of Islam, in which I was fed the idea that one day a fulfillment of an ancient prophecy by the Muslim prophet Mohammed would come to pass,'' recalled Shoebat.  ''The prophecy foretold a battle in which the Holy Land would be recaptured and the elimination of the Jews would take place in a massive slaughter.  'The day of judgment shall not come to pass until a tribe of Muslims defeat a tribe of Jews,' it said, 'in Jerusalem and the surrounding nations.' ''

It was not long before Walid’s education led him to get involved in various terrorist activities.  He routinely stirred up riots and lynch mobs, throwing firebombs and rocks at soldiers and pelting Jewish worshippers at the Western Wall.  He even beat an Israeli soldier, with the intent to kill, but the soldier escaped at the last second.