So, what exactly is the news? A new online web project? They come and go, don’t they? This is what might be going through your mind, if you were told that a new Palestinian web project has been launched.
For a number of reasons, however, you may be quite wrong if you meet this new web endeavor with skepticism. There are a few things that make this project fundamentally different. Consider this an invitation to explore its unique features, and you may well end up reaching the same conclusion as the Musical Intifada: this is an amazing and promising project that has the potential to become one of the most important online outlets of a united Palestinian voice.
Even if you have only browsed the website for a few minutes, one thing becomes really clear: Beyond Compromise presents the Palestinians as one people, wherever in the world they may be. It’s title and subtitle (‘Resistance Until Liberation & Return’) leave no room for doubt: this is a beacon of online resistance, not some cosy coffee corner on the world wide web.
Defying the tireless efforts of Zionism to fragment the Palestinian people into as many subgroups and factions as possible, this website seems to be determined to preserve their unity by showing that Palestinians are united by their common ancestry, vision and aims, while leaving enough room for ideological diversity.
Shattering the Oslo-induced idea of Palestine consisting of a bunch of fragmented swathes of land in the West Bank and Gaza, this website provides space for Palestinians from the 1948-occupied territories, and from anywhere in the worldwide diaspora.
Despite its impressive cast of founders (see ‘About Us‘) Beyond Compromise opens its doors to all Palestinians, whether they are high-profile ‘tweeps’, bloggers or publicists, or ordinary people who have an opinion to share, and possess the abilities to express it.
As you can see under ‘Submissions‘, their policy however clearly shuns factionalism. It is obvious that the founders of this unique web project wish to make a clear statement against the divisive influence of political organizations: ‘Beyond Compromise will not publish pieces that support regimes and political factions’.
Aren’t you impressed yet? Well, you will be if you click on the ‘About Us’ tab. You will see who the people are who initiated this project, and if you are in any way familiar with social media activism for the Palestinian cause, you will recognize the names of some of the most serious web activists that Palestine has to offer.
Adam Akkad, Yasir Tineh, Nour Salman, Nadine Liddawi, Deema Alsaafin, Maath Musleh and Nader Elkhuzundar are all young people who have proven their dedication, skills and impact through years of activism on and off the internet. You can rest assured that their extensive experience in social media activism will help this project make an impact on Twitter, Facebook, and any other venue on the world wide web. They are people who are knowledgeable, refined and, perhaps more than anything, stubbornly Palestinian.
Last but not least, this is another thing that raises the spirits of all those who genuinely support the Palestinians in their struggle: finally there is a comprehensive, well thought-out online project that puts a clear emphasis on the fact that the main representatives of the struggle must be the Palestinians themselves. All too often, we have been seeing a preference among international media and peace activist organizations for the mouths and pens of non-Palestinian writers and speakers – which is fine until it results in creating the baseless impression that Palestinians are incapable of representing their own struggle.
When I first stumbled upon Beyond Compromise, I was truly enthused and psyched. Now that I have given it some more thought, I am even more confident that this project has a potential for durability, quality, impact, and for creating a new wave and style of Palestinian activism that can help inspire all Palestinians, inside and outside of the homeland. This, dear readers, is a truly budding online ‘Palestinian Spring’, if I ever saw one.
Make sure you add it to your bookmarks, and visit regularly – or better yet, contribute with some empowering submission that emanates straight from your Palestinian heart and soul. And if you are not Palestinian yourself, start looking at Beyond Compromise to hear the voices of our struggling people, and show your true solidarity by giving them your full support.
Resistance Until Liberation and Return! Yes, indeed!