Like everyone else I’m reading about Gaza, I feel numbing despair both at the actions of Israel and the continued toadying (let alone funding and arming) of the so-called civilised world to mass murder. Though at least other nations in the UN are attempting to find ways to support non-violent resolution.
When two world views like the hardline hawk Israeli and the extreme anti-Jewish sentiments of some in the Arabic worlds collide, what is needed to change the situation is dialogue. Is continuing communication. Is negotiating, compromising, listening, hearing viewpoints of “the other”.
The problem when world-views are so far apart, is that even the possibility of dialogue is gone. So an article like this is possible, from the Gulf News paper in the United Arab Emirates capital Dubai:
Today, the whole world stands as a witness to the fact that the Nazi holocaust was a mere lie, which was devised by the Zionists to blackmail humanity. The same Zionist entity swindled the world out of billions of dollars over the years to compensate the wrong and unjust which they claim to have been inflicted on their people.
It is evident that the holocaust was a conspiracy hatched by the Zionists and Nazis, and many innocent people gave their lives as a result of this inhuman plot.
Israelis grow up being told by their State the Arabic world wants them erased from the “Middle East” (I hate that colonial term…). Arabic people grow up being told the Nazi holocaust was exaggerated – or even a “mere lie.” Without dialogue, both of these views are hard to challenge from within.
I take my hat off to the feminist peace groups in Palestine and Israel that have continued to try and do that work together for decades. I feel despair, but I’m glad others do not. Because at the end of the day, despair is not going to stop people dying. Dialogue will.
And every protest action we take here has to be part of that change.
I’m off to the Parihaka Peace Festival. Peace to all.