Skip to main content

Palestinian debate:‎ Should Jews be called descendants of apes and pigs?‎

Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik  |

Palestinian debate:

Should Jews be called

descendants of apes and pigs?


Fatah Revolutionary Council member on PA TV:

Calling Jews "descendants of apes and pigs"

is "not part of our values"


Three weeks before in PA TV sermon:

Jews are "apes and pigs and slaves of deities"


Palestinian youth and young girls on PA TV:

"O Sons of Zion, O most evil among creations
O barbaric apes, O wretched pigs"


by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik




A recent statement by a Fatah official may be the basis for cautious optimism regarding Palestinian ongoing demonization of Jews. For years, PA religious leaders, officials and even poems recited by children have presented Jews as "descendants of apes and pigs." However, after Fatah Revolutionary Council member Muwaffaq Matar, who is a Christian, was insulted by Hamas, who called him "a descendant of apes and pigs," he rejected the use of this religious hate speech that is normally directed at Jews, saying "it is not part of our values":


"They [Hamas] said: 'It seems that Muwaffaq Matar is a descendant of apes and pigs, physically and mentally.' This is racism... Naturally, they use this expression about the Jews. This is unfortunate. We also reject these expressions, because they are not part of our values, absolutely not."

[Fatah-run Awdah TV, Feb. 23, 2015]


This is a clear challenge to what has been a long-term PA policy. Palestinian Media Watch documented that the PA TV sermon broadcast just three weeks before Matar's statement included this Antisemitic statement, quoting the Quran:


"Many Muslims are being harmed these days by a group whose hearts were sealed by Allah. 'He made of them [Jews] apes and pigs and slaves of deities' (Quran, 5:60)."

[Official PA TV, Jan. 30, 2015]


Similarly, Palestinian education seems to promote this view, as youth and children recite poems describing Jews as descendants of apes and pigs on PA TV. A young man recited this last year on PA TV:



"O, you who were brought up on spilling blood
O, you [Jews] who murdered Allah's pious prophets
You have been condemned to humiliation and hardship
O Sons of Zion, O most evil among creations
O barbaric apes, O wretched pigs...
I will not fear your throngs.

My belt is around my waist, and my rifle is on my shoulder."

[Official PA TV, Sept. 12, 2014]


Two very young girls on PA TV recited the same poem with this Islam-based hate speech against Jews:



Similarly, another young girl recited a poem with the phrase "
Allah's enemies, the sons of pigs":




At a Fatah celebration in 2012, the moderator introduced the PA Mufti on stage with the following words:


"Our war with the descendants of the apes and pigs (i.e., Jews) is a war of religion and faith. Long Live Fatah! [I invite you,] our honorable Sheikh."

[Official PA TV, Jan. 9, 2012]


The Mufti then quoted the Hadith (sayings and practices attributed to Islam's Prophet Muhammad) stating that Muslims' destiny is to kill Jews as a condition for the Resurrection.


For documentation of the long-term PA policy, see PMW's special section on Palestinians demonizing Jews as "apes and pigs".


RelatedView all ❯