Israel’s slaughter of Palestinians continues through its seventh day, with no prospect of it being ended any time soon. The dead among Palestinians is approaching two hundred, mostly civilians. The injured exceeded a thousand innocent human beings who happened to live in Gaza. Hundreds of Palestinian homes are destroyed. Thousands of Palestinians are displaced, and tens of thousands are warned to leave their homes or risk death in Northern Gaza. Seven days of mayhem in Gaza and not a single Israeli case of death or injury reported. The Israeli military superiority over the besieged Palestinians is evident and not in dispute.
There is no question about the ability of the Israeli military to cause serious damage and inflict massive deaths, injuries, and destruction to Palestinians. The question is to where are Israeli leaders going? To which end they are taking the Palestinian-Israeli conflict? One thing is certain; they cannot get rid of the Palestinian people. So, where does the state of Israel go from here?
One day, hopefully sooner and if not later, the current hostilities will be brought to an end. At the end of this round of violence and destruction, Israelis will find themselves farther away from any prospect for peace. Most Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, and many others will be more convinced than ever that the state of Israel is not seeking peace with the Palestinian people; it is only bent on perpetuating the conflict.
Israeli policies of aggression and destruction can prevail for some time, but history teaches that war, aggression, and destruction cannot be sustained for all times. Indeed, the Israeli military has the capacity to kill and injure thousands upon thousands of Palestinians, and it can destroy homes, schools and mosques, but it cannot break the will of the Palestinian people to survive.
Israeli leaders can – as they have been doing for more than six decades – inflict unbearable pain and suffering on the Palestinian people; including ethnic cleansing, murderous policies and practices, discriminatory laws, and brutal military occupation, but in the end Israelis will discover that they will have to find a way to live with the Palestinians; not without them. Living without the Palestinians is just not in the cards; it is an impossible objective. And for the conflict to end, this living with Palestinians must be based on equal human rights for all. Until then, Palestinian suffering will continue and Israeli fear of retaliation will also continue. In the end, Israelis – if they continue to be the more powerful of the two parties – will have to make the choice of conquering their fear and ending the conflict by accepting to live with the Palestinians as equal human beings who are entitled to the very same human rights that Israeli-Jews are entitled to enjoy.
Hope is the stuff from which life is made!