Birthday: June 6, 1959
Age: 61 Years, 61 Year Old Males
Sun Sign: Gemini
Born in: Kobar
Famous as: Palestinian Political figure
political ideology: Political party - Fatah (1974–2005, 2006–present), Al-Mustaqbal (2005–2006)
Spouse/Ex-: Fadwa Barghouti
Founder/Co-Founder: Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, Al-Mustaqbal
education: Birzeit University, Cairo University
Marwan Barghouti is one of the most significant military and political figures involved in the Palestinian resistance against Israeli occupation. Since he joined Fatah as a teenager, Marwan has been motivated by his desire to see an independent state of Palestine. He faced adversity for these beliefs his entire life, with his first arrest by Israeli forces coming before he even graduated high school. Marwan showed his perseverance at an early age by earning his high school diploma from a jail cell. He went on to college to earn both a Bachelors and Masters degree, which proved that he was much more than the unstable rebel leader the Israeli forces painted him out to be. Marwan earned support from some Israeli politicians through his opposition of the corruption in the Palestinian government. Even though he was eventually arrested and given a life sentence in prison for his alleged involvement in suicide bombings against Israeli civilians, he still advocated for a peaceful resolution of the conflict. He maintained that the Palestinian people were merely acting in self-defense, and all violence would stop if Israel would cease their occupation of Palestine. These firm beliefs are what still make Marwan Barghouti one of the most popular Palestinian political figures, even from the confines of an Israeli prison
Childhood & Early Life
Marwan Barghouti was born on June 6, 1959, in a West Bank village named Kobar. He belongs to the Barghouti clan, which hails from Deir Ghassaneh. His father was a migrant worker in Lebanon and he had six siblings.
Marwan was inspired to join the Palestinian resistance at an early age. He joined Fatah at the age of 15.
He quickly made an impact within the group by co-founding the Shabiba, which was the name of the Fatah Youth Movement.
In 1976, he had has first run-in with Israeli authorities. He was arrested for being involved with Palestinian military groups. While in jail he completed his secondary education. He received his high school diploma and became fluent in Hebrew.
In 1983, Marwan continued his education by enrolling at Birzeit University. Due to his arrest and exile, he was not able to receive his degree until 1994.
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Marwan Barghouti studies were interrupted in 1987 when he became a major figure in the First Intifada. He became a leader in the Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory.
He was arrested the same year for his involvement and sent to exile in Jordan. He stayed in exile for seven years until the terms of the Oslo Accords in 1994 allowed him to return.
Although he had a track record of leading armed resistance, Marwan always maintained a strong support of a peaceful solution. He was mistrustful of Israel's motives as he did not believe they would agree to the formation of Palestine.
He began his career in politics when he was elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council in 1996. After his election to the Legislative Council, he strongly voiced his opinion in the favor of an independent Palestinian State.
He was an opponent of Yasser Arafat and strongly opposed the corruption and human rights violations within his administration. He also built strong relations with several Israeli politicians during his time as Secretary-General of Fatah.
At the turn of the new millennium, in 2000, the Second Intifada began. Marwan excelled as the leader of Tanzim, Fatah's military branch.
He led the resistance against the Israeli Defense Force. He was a strong supporter of armed resistance against Israeli forces, although he also desired a peaceful resolution. His reasoning was that all Palestinians had the right to arm themselves against invaders of their homes. He strongly opposed armed violence against Israeli civilians.
Although he opposed violence against civilians, Israel accused him of being a high-ranking member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades. This group was responsible for three suicide bombings that killed five people.
Israel suspected him of being the mastermind of the group's attacks and attempted to assassinate him in 2001. He survived the missile attack when the missile hit his bodyguard's car instead. The attack killed his bodyguard.
He was arrested in Palestinian territory on April 15, 2002. He was moved to a prison in Jerusalem, which was Israeli territory. This caused much debate on the legality of his arrest.
During his trial Marwan refused to present a defense on the grounds that the trial was illegal. He claimed Israeli forces had no authority to arrest him since the arrest happened in Palestinian territory. He also claimed his transport to Jerusalem violated the Geneva convention.
Marwan Barghouti was convicted of murder and attempted murder on May 20th, 2004. He was sentenced to five life sentences for five murders, and an additional 40 years for an attempted murder.
He has since remained politically active in prison. In November 2004, he briefly campaigned for presidency of the Palestinian Authority following the death of Yasser Arafat. He eventually withdrew from the contest under pressure from Fatah.
Marwan Barghouti's most significant contribution was his life-long dedication to fighting for Palestinian independence. His blend of military tactics and diplomatic tact earned him support from Israeli politicians, which is something no other Palestinian leader accomplished.
In December of 2005, he split from Fatah and formed Al-Mustaqbal. His strategy was to gain support of the Palestinian youth and work towards peace. Unfortunately, this party never reached its full potential due to Marwan's imprisonment.
Personal Life & Legacy
Marwan Barghouti married his college sweetheart Fadwa Ibrahim in October of 1984. The couple has one daughter named Ruba and three sons named Arab, Sharaf, and Quassam.
Even though he is imprisoned, a 2012 poll showed 60% of Palestinians would vote for him as President, if given a chance