RAMALLAH, Sunday, September 5, 2021 (WAFA) – The Palestinian National Liberation Movement (Fatah) mourned yesterday veteran Palestinian freedom fighter Shafeeq Ghabra who died in Kuwait after a long fight with illness.
Mahmoud Al-Aloul, deputy Chairman of Fatah, mourned Ghabra in a Facebook post. “Ghabra’s loss is painful. He’s a friend and comrade of mine, and a freedom fighter of a special kind. His memory of heroism and sacrifice will remain eternal.”
Prior to his death, Ghabra worked as a professor of political science at Kuwait University and founding President of Jusoor Arabiya which focuses on youth leadership programs and strategic planning.
During the Nakba of 1948, his Palestinian family fled to Egypt and later moved to Kuwait. Through his studies, Ghabra sought to monitor and document the central role played by Palestinian families in the diaspora to revive their collective memory.
He also studied ways to ensure the continuity of links between those inside and outside Palestine, and revealed how some members of these families bore the cost of educating their relatives and fulfilling all their financial needs to protect the Palestinian society from the disintegration caused by the Nakba, the expulsion of Palestinians from their homeland in 1948, and the Israeli occupation’s policies.
His Palestinian family’s experience of exile motivated him to dedicate most of his research to the Palestinian cause, and to focus on Palestinian diaspora studies, besides studying the mechanisms of power and society in Kuwait, where he spent most of his life.
Ghabra’s father, Dr. Nazem Ghabra, was a highly successful cardiologist in Haifa, Palestine, before the Nakba (or ‘catastrophe’ of 1948). He later became the personal cardiologist to the emir and crown prince of Kuwait. When Ghabra and his father became full citizens of Kuwait, there was a sense that the Palestinian Naqba’s wounds would never heal.
In the 1970s, Ghabra fought for the Fatah Movement’s “Student Battalion,” also known as Al-Jarmaq brigade, setting off from southern Lebanon to begin his first steps in confronting the Israeli occupation.
He is also a frequent political commentator on many networks, including Al-Jazeera, the BBC, and many other outlets such as CNN and Fox. His editorials have appeared in The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, and he is a social media influencer on Twitter.
Ghabra was also a recipient of the highest award for Scientific Research in the Humanities and Social Science from the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences chaired by the Emir of Kuwait, January 1997.