A few days ago Raquel Evita Saraswati and myself were interviewed for the the Portuguese daily, Publico. The interview was conducted by Margarida Santos Lopes, and explores how an Israeli-Jew and a Muslim (who happen to be friends), view reasons for the hate and violence in Israel/Palestine and the possibilities for peace in the region. The News Service Common Ground has also published the interview in English, Arabic, and Hebrew. Part I of the interview can be read here, while part two is forthcoming.
Roi: Most Israelis and Palestinians engage in violence due to a perception that they are under threat, and the belief that they are acting in self-defence and for the cause of justice. It is not, therefore, a sadistic impulse to cause bloodshed. At the same time, it is clear that far too many Palestinians and Israelis have an unhealthy confidence in the efficacy of violence. We have both placed too much faith in what I call the algorithm of violence: the notion that force is the optimal method for resolving conflict. This faith has led many to tragically dismiss peaceful forms of conflict resolution.
Raquel: What we, the new generation of Muslims and Jews calling for peace, must do is this: we must make the conversation our own. Our minds must not be battlefields trampled by old thinking and simmering hate. We must reject the very idea that our religious identity or ethnicity determines our “camp.” We can meet one another – virtually, even personally – and re-imagine this region. Beyond the desire for reconciliation, we can and must take action for peace.
To read more, click here. Don’t forget to check back for part II.