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Uri Katz
  • Uri Katz
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • United States

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How do we make peace between Israel and Palestine?

Lets take it for granted that both sides are to blame in this conflict, and neither is going to disappear off the face of the earth any time soon.
Answers like "make love not war" would without a doubt work, but I am hoping for a little more substance.
If, like me, you think peace is only achievable in a distant future, but we have to begin working on it now, that is something I would like to hear, especially what we should be doing now.
If you know of a faster track to peace, all the better.

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Closing Statement from Uri Katz

I would like to personally thank all the participants in this conversation.
I think we all recognized the immense difficulty this problem poses. At the same time, most people acknowledged that there is plenty that can be done, not all hope is lost.
Here are a few answers I collected. This is not a summary, only a list of the suggestions I think have the greatest potential to lead to peace. Each stands on it own, but together they have the most power. If we start implementing these ideas, sooner or later the reality in the region will change and a more direct path to peace will become apparent:

1. Instead of broadcasting yet another suicide bomber, give peace a chance by trumpeting every peaceful attempt by both sides.

2. Deflate the issue so that people see it not as cultural & religious issue, but as a localized dispute over resources and land. Then we can ask what a just division of these would be.

3. Recruit moderate religious leader.

4. Understand the other side as best as possible. How are they different? How we are they similar? Make sure your education is fact based and not propaganda.

5. Teach and practice forgiveness, which is key to all true conflict resolution
Also practice: Tolerance, Compassion, Acceptance, Appreciation

6. Remove all hate, and all us-them mentality, from school syllabuses.

7. Both side need to stop looking at themselves as victims. They are not victims of each other or of the larger world. They should take responsibility for their lives and actions.

8. The blame game does not help.

9. Historical arguments are usually used to advance one sided justification for violence and war, as such they are ineffective in the struggle toward peace.

10. Create joint projects such as competitive sporting events.

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    Feb 8 2013: I'm an Australian of Scottish descent and an atheist. I find the behavior of both sides in this conflict disgraceful. But from the point of view of a total outsider I find it very hard to accept the Israeli version of defence where you defend yourself against random rocket fire and stone throwing youths with tanks and jet fighters.
    • Feb 10 2013: So, following your strange reasoning If Israel covered the whole Gaza strip with random rockets it would be OK since that is what Gaza does? I have the feeling that you would have an objection to your scheme too.
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        Feb 10 2013: Essentially yes. If isael returned fire with what would be considered reasonable force in a court of law I would have no objection. If someone threatens to shoot me with a hand gun and I kill him first with my hand gun I can argue self defence. But if I kill him and six of his friends with a machine gun I am in trouble.
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      Feb 10 2013: What would you do if they were firing rockets at you and blowing up in your shopping malls? I ask this not to excuse Israeli aggression, but because a fresh point of view with new ideas is sorely needed.
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        Feb 10 2013: I would return fire proportionately. From an outside perspective I find it hard to accept the fact the there are ten times more casualties on one side than the other. The apparent over reaction by the Isareli forces also does damage to the reputation of all Israelis and gives the Arab world something to bring up in the media.
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          Feb 11 2013: How about not returning fire at all?

          "If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head..."
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        Feb 11 2013: Arkady I agree wholeheartedly but when it comes to international relations returning fire seems to be inevitable.
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          Feb 11 2013: ...unfortunately. I think, this is why religion and politics do not mix well. Politicians who practice "turning the other cheek" are truly appreciated only postmortem. Most prefer to crucify rather than be crucified.

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