It was jubilation galore in Milan, when Cristiano Ronaldo, famously called CR7 led his dedicated team mates to win the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League campaign on Saturday night.
After what seemed to be a fierce battle with its rival and neighbour, Atletico, Real Madrid came out victorious, after a dramatic penalty shootout, becoming the European champions for the 11th time, the highest in the history of the tournament.
From Santiago Bernabeu in Spain to other parts of the world, the celebrations continue, as die hard fans and well-wishers go crazy to cheer Zinedine Zidane’s led team for the victory well deserved.
It will interesting to note that Zidane, who replaced Rafael Benitez as a manager in January, won the trophy with the team as a player in 2002.
However, unlike Real Madrid, it was a different sad story for the Palestine, a country without a land, but which has enjoyed unflinching supports from Ronaldo’s humanitarian spirit over the years.
Ironically, as the world rejoices with the Champions, the terrorists and fatalistic Israeli soldiers were busy killing innocent Palestinians in far away West Bank and Gaza. More than 2,100 children have been wounded and hundreds callously baited and slaughtered with no particular crime committed within 7 months, while countless of underage children are languishing in the Israeli prisons.
This week alone, imemc.org reports (from May 21-27), revealed various Israeli atrocities against the defenceless Palestinians- how Israelis killed indiscriminately, young and old; and destroyed farms, a major Palestinian source of livelihood. Sources said soldiers fired many live rounds on farmers and sherpherds, along the border fence, east of the Gaza Strip.
Just two days before the Champions league final, Israeli navy ships opened fire on several Palestinian fishing boats within six nautical miles from the Gaza shore, forcing them to return without fishing. They opened fire, targeting fishermen in Palestinian waters, northwest Gaza Strip.
Palestinians experience turbulence on daily basis under the Israeli occupation, but most of these atrocities go unpublished in the mainstream media.
The Western world leaders including Gulf countries turn deaf ears to the cries of the poor and helpless Palestinian children. Of course, they can’t hear their cries, simply because Syria has been turned to their next battle ground, where innocent children (mostly) have met the same fate, as the Palestinians’.
Many wonder why it appears nobody cares for the woes of the Palestinians. The reason is not far fetched. This is because they are victims of ‘international conspiracy’, except for some personalities, particularly celebrities such as popular US Presenter, Jon Stewart; Spanish actress, Penelope Cruz; movie star and comedian, Rob Schneider; and footballers like Eric Cantona, Eden Hazard, Frédéric Kanouté, Abou Diaby, Didier Drogba and of course, the man of the moment, Cristiano Ronaldo, among others.
While some hide their supports for Palestinians struggle because of fear of ‘financial’ intimidation and possible victimisation from pro-Israeli regime, Cristiano Ronaldo never hid his love for the oppressed people of Palestine.
The Portuguese soccer star, who doesn’t need an introduction has expressed his support for the Palestine several times in the past. In 2013, he refused to swap his jersey with an Israeli player to demonstrate his support for Palestinian rights.The 28-year-old gave away his Golden Boot Award to the Real Madrid foundation, who later put it up for auction to raise money for building schools in Palestine.
Early this year (March), ‘Ororo’ as Ronaldo is fondly called by Nigerian fans, alongside his team-mates received Ahmad Dawabsheh, the sole survivor of Palestinian family whose house was burned down by Israeli terrorists last year at the club’s players in the Santiago Bernabeu stadium, Madrid, Spain.
The five-year-old Palestinian boy suffered from brutal burns that have severely affected his mobility. The attack claimed the lives of Ahmad’s parents and his 18-month-old baby brother, Ali.
He was happy to meet his hero, for real, as he boasted confidently; “He’s the best in the World”. Well, you might say, ‘what does a kid know?’ But Ronaldo has actually proven that he’s not only a Pro-Palestine, he’s the best player in the world at the moment.
Let me leave the arguments for the football fanatics, but the question you should ask yourself is: ‘What have I done to support Palestinians?’ You don’t need to engage in any senseless murder of the innocent children before you support the Palestinian course. You don’t even need to be a Muslim, before you show your humanitarian support for a worthy course, since an injury to one is an injury to all under the global concept of universal Brotherhood as long as blood flows in your veins. It’s all about our collective survival, it’s all about humanity.
This is indeed a clarion call to all Human Rights activists, especially Nigerian celebrities to emulate their counterparts across the globe. It is indeed time to show the humanity in us.
As for the Muslims, if Ronaldo, a descendant of Vasco da Gama who slaughtered hundreds of Muslims in the middle ages and a host of European personalities could go to such an extent to display abundant love, passion and support for the oppressed people of Palestine even as the world look the other way, why then would you remain unperturbed and unconcerned?
If European boutiques, eateries and even Churches are boycotting Israeli products to express their disdain for senseless carnage and needless pursuit of racist agenda, why will it be difficult for a Muslim or an Arab to boycott his or her enemies’ products, when there exist countless alternatives?
How then do I know the Israeli products? You need not stress yourself searching for boycotted products. The dbsmovement.net and inminds.com have made it easy to identify the products to boycott; and why you must boycott them, just as a visit to mai.com.ng is a one stop shop for Israeli support products in Nigeria.
As Ramadan approaches, dear brethren, it is important to refrain from breaking your fast with boycotted products. Educate your family about the plight of the Palestinians, as you also remember them in your prayers.
It is also essential to pray for our dear country Nigeria, and other trouble-ridden regions of the World.
May Buhari Succeed!
As Nigerians celebrate Democracy Day and football fans celebrate with Real Madrid and the wonder boy, Ronaldo, let the celebrations continue…
#HalaMadrid #LongLivePalestine # God Bless Nigeria
Rasheed Abubakar is a journalist and an author of ‘Muslims and the threats of the Media’. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | twitter: @rawshield123