Fighting and Acting for Peace
The Fellowship | May 28, 2020
Actor and IDF veteran Juliano Mer-Khamis was interviewed by Israel’s Army Radio: “I am 100 percent Palestinian and 100 percent Jewish.” The son of a Jewish mother and Christian father, this Israeli served his country. Then he lost his life because he wanted to find peace between his two backgrounds.
A History of Service to Israel
Juliano’s Jewish mother fought with the Palmach, the elite fighting force of the pre-IDF Haganah. His grandfather, a renowned Jewish scientist from the Holy Land, studied malaria. His father was a Christian Arab.
Serving the Holy Land After IDF Service
Juliano followed in his mother’s footsteps, serving as a combat soldier in the IDF’s Paratroopers Brigade, even using her Jewish surname instead of his father’s Arab name. After the IDF, he studied acting, founding the Freedom Theatre, which provides opportunities for Palestinian children. Besides acting, Juliano also did good deeds. He drove pregnant women to Israeli hospitals and poor children to beaches.
Juliano had a child with his wife, who was pregnant with twins when his life ended. He foresaw his death, knowing that his urge to help Palestinian children would anger Palestinian terrorists who accused him of “corrupting the youth of Islam.” A masked gunman assassinated this man who wanted peace for all in his homeland of Israel, but never faced justice despite having ties to Hamas. But Juliano Mer-Khamis’ legacy lives on, in the children he fathered, as well as the many he helped.