Skip to main content

Palestinian graffiti satirises Trump's obsession for walls

New artwork on the Separation Wall draws attention to the US president's plans for the US-Mexico border
The image, by graffiti artist Lushsux, is inspired by Trump's recent visit to Jerusalem

A graffiti artist has lampooned Donald Trump with a painted depiction on the Separation Wall in Bethlehem. 

Sprayed images of the US President, styled on photographs taken during his May visit to the Western Wall in Jerusalem, were created by graffiti artist Lushsux.

The artist painted Trump resting his hand on the wall with a speech bubble reading "I'm going to build you a brother".

In another piece, Trump smiles lecherously as he embraces one of the wall's guard towers, structures manned by soldiers and often marked by paint thrown at the concrete during protests.

The paintings satirise Trump's praise of the barrier, which was approved by Ariel Sharon in 2002 and bars Palestinians living in the West Bank from accessing land on the other side of the wall.

The structure has been condemned by rights groups, who argue its construction has facilitated a landgrab of territory beyond the 1949 Green Line.

tourists look at lushsux graffiti on the separation wall

President Trump hopes to build a similar structure on the USA's southern border, with the aim of preventing migrants crossing into the States from Mexico.

In a January phone call the Mexican president, Enrique Pena Nieto, he claimed Benjamin Netanyahu had personally told him that "the wall works".

"You know, you look at Israel – Israel has a wall and everyone said do not build a wall, walls do not work - 99.9 percent of people trying to come across that wall cannot get across and more," he said, according to a transcript published on Thursday by the Washington Post.

The work becomes part of a graffiti gallery that has spread across the wall in recent years. Images of doves caught in sniper hairs and protesters throwing bouquets have become famous, as global artists including Banksy and Ron English have travelled to Palestine to use the 8m-high concrete panels as a canvas.

Jesus wore these Air Bethlehems in game 6 against the Romans #bethlehem #nike #jordans #HypeBeast

— LUSHSUX (@lushsux) August 1, 2017

Banksy has even opened a guesthouse, called the Walled Off Hotel, next to the barrier in Bethlehem.

The project has attracted international attention but hasn't gone down well with everyone: some Palestinians are anxious that it could take business away from struggling locals, while others have expressed fears that it could trivialise or commodify the conflict.

Palestinian artists have also made their mark on the wall, although often they have often remained anonymous.

Notable creations include huge portraits of Palestinian leaders Leila Khaled, Marwan Barghouti and Yasser Arafat, and depictions of Handala, the refugee figure created in 1969 by cartoonist Naji al Ali.

Lushsux did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Their past work has focused on lighthearted depictions of internet celebrities and memes, such as Kendall Jenner, 

Youtube star Pewdiepie, and the dancing hotdog. 

Stay informed with MEE's newsletters

Sign up to get the latest alerts, insights and analysis, starting with Turkey Unpacked

Middle East Eye delivers independent and unrivalled coverage and analysis of the Middle East, North Africa and beyond. To learn more about republishing this content and the associated fees, please fill out this form. More about MEE can be found here.