Yasser Arafat Joke


As told to me last night by Damian Najman, one of the Columbia College Libertarians who hosted my talk:

Arafat has a dream that he is going to die so he goes to see a medium who might be able to explain the circumstances of his death. The medium gazes into her crystal ball and declares, "You are going to die on a Jewish holiday." Arafat replies, "Which one?" The medium responds, "It doesn't matter. Whatever day you die will become a Jewish holiday."

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  1. No offense Nick, but I (first!) heard that one about 35 years ago, only then it was about Nasser. Maybe cause I’m Jewish.

  2. fyodor,

    I’ve heard it used in reference to other people as well, like Saddam.

  3. still, it’s a goodie…

    (i hadn’t heard it before sadly..)


  4. Actually, it was a better joke 35 years ago.

    Nasser walks into a psychic’s tent and says, “Do you know me?” The psychic says, “No.” Nasser says, “Good. Now tell me when I will die.” The psychic studies her crystal ball hard and says, “I see you will die on a Jewish holiday.” Nasser say, “Well…there are many Jewish holidays–which one?” The psychic peers harder and says, “I see it is…the Jewish holiday…that celebrates the death of Nasser!”

    All laugh. Well you knew how it was going to end already. Really, my father told me this about 35 years ago. I guess the current one is a little meaner cause it implies the medium is in on it and rubbing it in, plus it’s a dream implying Arafat’s conscience is getting to him. But I like the old version better.

  5. JB,

    Yeah, it gets updated now and again!

  6. fyodor’s version is funnier because the psychic is “actually” seeing into the future. Damian’s version is less funny because the psychic is just dissing Arafat, not actually seeing into the future. 🙂

  7. fyodor,

    I always thought that Sharon and Arafat looked like Jabba the Hut and Jabba’s little green buddy. 🙂

  8. Salacious Crumb! That is if you are referring to the little guy who laughs a lot, and then gets electrocuted by R2D2 during the battle at the Sarlac Pit.

  9. Another version, maybe the original one, involves Hitler. I think it appears in Leo Rosten’s The Joys of Yiddish.

  10. I haven’t heard the joke before, and I vote for the newer version as being the better one, because it is more of a mean zinger.

    But voting is immoral anyway … I should have said, “In the marketplace of jokes, I would choose the fresher one.”

  11. I hope these are fresh zingers–being Irish, I wouldn’t know–seeing as how I just got them today in an e-mail from my buddy, Gofaq Yussef:

    Did you hear about the Muslim strip club?
    It features full facial nudity!

    Why are Palestinian boys luckier than American boys?
    Because every Palestinian boy will get to join a rock group!

    What does the sign say above the nursery in a Palestinian maternity
    “Live ammunition.”

    A Palestinian girl says to her mommy:
    “After Abdul blows up, can I have his room?”

  12. Whatever the origin, it’s a lot funnier in ancient-Egyptian.

  13. What does the sign say above the nursery in a Palestinian maternity ward? “Live ammunition.”


  14. Darnell,

    That’s the one.

  15. ‘Gofaq Yussef’ – now I get it.

  16. The young Palestinian girl gave a twirl in front of her friends before setting out for the bus stop.

    “Does my bomb look big in this?” she asked.

  17. This will test your knowledge of British culture!

    Arafat went to his final resting place wearing a rangers shirt, spurs shorts, one Newcastle sock and one Lazio sock. Why? …

    Because it was his dying wish to be buried in a Gazza strip.

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