Le Syrien n’est pas un Arabe, l’Irakien n’est pas un Arabe, l’Égyptien n’est pas un Arabe, le Libanais n’est pas un Arabe, le Jordanien et le Palestinien [et les Maghrébins] non plus. Nous sommes des Levantins, nous sommes des Byzantins, des syriaques, des Chaldéens, des Assyriens, des Coptes, [des Berbères], nous sommes les descendants d’Ebla et de la Mésopotamie, des Phéniciens, des Pharaons, nous sommes du Levant et son peuple autochtone. Nous ne sommes pas des Arabes, assez de viol de falsification de l’histoire, de la géographie, de la vérité et de la réalité.
Ô vous bergers, et vous, messieurs les arabisants et les passionnés de l’arabisme, si vous souhaitez en parler et vous en targuer, parlez plutôt de votre lâcheté, des peuples massacrés, violés et enlevés et dont le passé et le présent ont été détruits et peut-être même l’avenir, tout cela au nom de l’arabisme.
We are not Arabs!
No, we are not Arabs. Enough lies, fraud, deceit, weakness, and fear. We are not Arabs, fortunately! The Syrian is not an arab, neither the Iraqi, nor the Egyptian, nor the Lebanese, nor the Jordanian, nor the Palestinian. We are Levantines. We are Byzantine, Chaldeans, Assyrians, and Copts...
We are descendants of the Mesopotamians, the Phoenicians, and the Pharaohs; we are the indigenous people of the Orient. We are not Arabs. Enough! Stop forging history, geography, truth and reality.
The descendants of the Arabian are the Arabs - and to be true to history we can say that some Arab tribes became Christians, but the Arabisation of the minority cannot be inflicted and imposed upon the majority of the Levant, which was never Arabic.
Even though we speak the Arabic language, that does not mean that we are Arabs.
The American who speaks English is not an Englishman, the Brazilian who speaks Portuguese is not from Portugal, the Argentinian who speaks Spanish is not from Spain; these are the languages of the occupation.
Even if we speak Arabic, we are neither Arabs nor resemble them in any way, neither in our culture nor in our taste nor in our civilization. They are the people of the desert while we are the people of civilization. Their land is the desert, while ours is the land of milk and honey, almonds and figs, apples and grapes.
Our forefathers cultivated the land and settled in it; their roots blended with it and they became part of the land; while you, you did not sow, so you became nomads and landless. Our forefathers planted the vineyard and made wine and created music, they rejoiced and danced, and built civilizations and wrote books, while yours drank blood and still do so; they danced on each others slaughtered bodies in joy and still do so to this day. They destroyed civilizations, burnt libraries and valuable books, and still do to this day.
We do not resemble you at all, neither in ancient history nor in the modern one. Our history is full of meaning and epic tales and glory, while your past is betrayal and so is your present and so will your future be.
We are not alike in any way, neither in our humanitarian history nor in our Christian or Muslim history. The Muslims of my country are different from the Muslims of yours. The Muslims of my country are humanitarian and lovers of education and life. As for you, you have created a people filled with hatred, complexities, and love of death.
Our history is civilization, knowledge, literature, music and poetry; your history is
blood, invasion, hatred and desires. He who became a Muslim in my country after the Arab invasion retained his noble demeanor, beliefs and traditions, and even they who have lived amongst us became like us from the societal point of view.
We ate together, we danced together we laughed together and cried together, but you have not changed. One thousand and four hundred years and you still have not changed and when you were unable to change us, destroyed and continue to destroy our homeland, our heritage, our coexistence and our humanity. The Eastern Muslim has denied you and is disgusted by you more than the Eastern Christian. We are the ones who have taught you, built your cities, hospitals, universities and kept your language. We wish we had not done so, we wish we left you to GOD’s justice and to your fate that is darker than your oil.
We were the bridge between you and the west, and you became a tool in the hands of the west bent on the destruction of our Levant. From your fruits, we have known you. You are a history of barbarism and humiliation and defeat.Name a single victory since the time of Salah Eddin, who was not even arab but Kurdish. Your victories are of your destruction of each other, the brother of his brother, the son of his father for the right to rule or for a camel or a woman or a donkey. The west has ridden you-- those who you call infidels--while you lick their feet so that they may allow you to keep your thrones, to rob more poor people, and to fill your coffers.
We have had enough and will no longer cover up this farce. So please do us a favor you sheepherders, arabized gentlemen and lovers of the arabisation, if you wish to speak and be proud of it then speak of yourself and your cowardice, and not of people who were slaughtered, raped, kidnapped, and whose past, present and most probably its future you have destroyed in the name of Arabization.
Glory be to the Levant and God rest the soul of the poet Nizar Qabbani who said in one of his poems:
“O green Tunisia I have come to you as a lover,
And on my forehead there is a book and a rose.
I am the Damascene whose profession is love.
He sang and the earth and the forest became green.
I am tired my friend with my Arabism.
Is Arabism a curse and torture?
The Arab world is either a slain
Lamb or a butcher ruler.”
Father Theodoros Daoud
Translated by Halla Najjar
pasteur à l’Église orthodoxe antiochoise, Baltimore – Maryland