Sunday, August 3, 2014
Casualty of War: Patience to Hear the Other Side
Today, I informed this Facebook friend that I need to disconnect from her for awhile. This is because she asked me if I was sad about the genocide in Gaza. And she also sent me horrific images of dead children, declaring there could be no justification, whatsoever, for the massacres taking place there on a daily basis. (Her words.) When I sent her an article written by an author from her country, stating that there were two sides to the current conflict, she refused to hear my side, the Israeli side.
I did not un-friend my author friend, as others might have, but clearly, there is a failure to communicate here.
I don't blame my friend from afar - she is exposed to media that is openly hostile to Israel. I also understand similar anti-Israel statements coming from contacts in Scotland, Ireland, Turkey, and even the United States, who only hear and accept the Palestinian side. But still, this bothers me.
Let me make something clear. I am absolutely abhorred by the loss of so many innocent Palestinian lives, a good percentage of them women and children. There is a war going on, and innocent lives are being lost. As an Israeli, I am upset at what is happening to the Palestinians, but their supporters are not upset at all about what is happening to us in Israel.
There is a lot more I could say, and that I have already said, about who is responsible for the bloodshed, and why this war, no matter how bloody and painful it may be, is supported by the majority of Israelis. I won't repeat these arguments here, because, in the case of my Facebook friend and others, they would just fall on deaf ears.
I have already written how the war is draining my creativity, affecting my ability to write and to edit. The sirens alerting me to incoming rockets interrupt my daily life and the solemn announcements of casualties strike me like a kick in the gut. One of my contacts belittled my feelings, wondering how I could bemoan a loss of creativity when lives were being lost. I had just been honest, stating how I personally was affected.
The violence has rattled my nerves. I am less patient, less forgiving, more liable to react strongly to disturbing posts and tweets. Yes, I admit it. The conflict has made me less patient to hear the Palestinian side as well. However, I do empathize with their pain, and I truly have done my best to understand them. Unfortunately, their refusal to understand what I feel and believe is very painful, and only demonstrates how deep their hatred is toward the country in which I live.
I still believe in the possibility of peace. In order to achieve that goal, there must be acceptance of the fact that there are two sides of the story. To bring an end to the violence, and to ensure a lasting peace, both sides will have to step back from their belligerent stances and make huge compromises in a process of real, honest negotiations.
In this war, no one is winning.
War Drains Your Creativity
Where I Stand on the War in Gaza
Driving Through Gaza City at Midnight
Yesterday Evening, Hamas Fired Rockets at My House