Thursday, November 11, 2004

One of the greatest leaders of the 20th century and personification of the Palestinian cause has died.

The world will morn the loss of President Yasser Arafat a man who believed in peace and was recognized as such in 1994, when he was awarded a Nobel Peace prize.

I learned of his death while waiting my turn to visit with the Martuni regional minister. Waiting with me was the head doctor of our military hospital, who asked me if I heard about Arafat’s passing away? I said no, but I am saddened by the news. He asked me why would I be sad, he was a terrorist. I told the good doctor that is only a matter of opinion, as some of the greatest Armenians in modern history were deemed terrorists by many, but are hero’s to us. I added that if Arafat was a terrorist, he was one with humanitarian intentions.

Abu Ammar, you were a great man, who did great work for your people. Though I am not Palestinian, I have a great deal of respect for you and will remember your example for many years to come. May to soil of your motherland lay lightly on you as you rest in peace and may your example live on forever in people who desire freedom and peace.

To the Palestinian people, I send to you my condolences for the loss of your great leader.

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