The Father of Maps (ابو خريتة)

Abu Kharita is not someone I look up to, care about, or wish greatness for. Abu Kharita is a both a real person and a fictional entity. It means both father of maps and father of bull-s—. I met this man in real life in Israel and I’ve encountered this concept many times prior to this engagement and will continue to encounter it for the rest of my life.

In all honesty I don’t remember his real name and don’t wish to. He was so proud of the wall he built to separate people. Like his government he believes it’s for the protection of Israeli’s  from suicide bombings, when in reality suicide bombings had stopped prior to its creation. In Israel they call this wall the “Security Fence” or the “Separation Fence”, as if it was a fence that is not made of concrete (In some parts it is a fence). The Palestinians call the wall “The Wall of Apartheid”, because they believe that Israel is a modern apartheid state as it doesn’t recognize Palestine as a state or it’s people and refuses to do so. The main reason as to why I dislike this man isn’t because of him building some wall to separate people, but because mentally he believed that all stereotypes of Arabs and Muslims were true, or so he made it seem. He spoke ill of all Palestinians, whether Muslim, Christian, Atheist, or other. He spoke ill of all Muslims. He was a dark-hearted man with disrespectful words. There are people who love Yasser Arafat and others who hated him, I’m neither. regardless of who Arafat was, I believe that his greatest accomplishment was giving Abu Kharita is name. He was a man who helped develop an arbitrary map that divides people along with the wall that accompanies it, but is also completely full of s—. My favorite thing about this wall; however, is the fact that it doesn’t work. People go through it every single day.

Just as people go through this wall in real life, there are people who go through the fictional walls that separate us everyday. This is the fictional Abu Kharita. Specifically with Muslims, there are labels that we attribute to ourselves that are essentially meaningless. Some call themselves traditionalists, others modernists, secularists, Hanafi, Maliki, Ismaili, Sufi, Sunni, Shia, Ahmaddiyyah, etc. these labels divide us not just religiously, but as people. Regardless of the category that we fall into, we’re all people with problems, concerns, ideas, philosophies, wants, and needs. We shouldn’t allow these fictional walls to separate us and we must go through them every single day.

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