As in most of the world, soccer, or football, is an immensely popular sport among Palestinians. From Gaza to the West Bank to the diaspora, the Beautiful Game plays a crucial role in the social life of Palestinian people. So of course, soccer is not immune from Israel's war against Palestinian existence. While some fans and a handful of players have dared to speak out against Israel's genocide, many of the most powerful institutions and figures in the sport have remained silent. Dr. Abdullah Al-Arian joins Edge of Sports for a discussion on the game's significance to Palestine, and what the international response from the soccer world could and must look like.
Abdullah Al-Arian is an associate professor of history at Georgetown University in Qatar. He is the author of Answering the Call: Popular Islamic Activism in Sadat's Egypt and the editor of Football in the Middle East: State, Society, and the Beautiful Game. He is editor of the "Critical Currents in Islam" page on the Jadaliyya e-zine.
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