I haven’t posted for a while because I’ve been reading and thinking about this post. And I still don’t know what to write.
You look at the deaths, the images and videos that are on our screens each night as more bodies pile up – around a thousand for this particular round of fighting and you wonder why? Why are we all just sitting back watching this happening – not just in Israel & Palestine but across the middle east with mass exodus of refugees crossing borders, ISIS attacks and advances, Sunni and Shia stand offs. I can’t get my head around it and I think we’ve gotten to the point where no-one can anymore and that’s why it’s not changing. We can look to history and the state of Palestine being divided and shared with the Jews – a mistake in itself by the UN, the ongoing funding of Israel by the US to the tune of 3 million or even the suicidal approach of Hammas telling its citizens to stay put when they know there will be casualties.
Did you know the average age of a Palestinian is 17. Seventeen is the average age of an entire nationality. Children are now veterans at the age of six having seen three such flare ups in as many years as they have existed.
The fact we are doing nothing is not to condone actions by either side but almost a shared confusion and shock at the barbaric scenes and actions on both sides. While it’s easy to point fingers or hold one side’s stats up as an example of who is the victim and who is the bad guy, they are all losing. There is no advance or improvement or change. Only death. I honestly believe we’ve gone beyond deciding who is right or wrong in this never-ending conflict. Even the two state solution seems like an impossibility now as there is no one person who can stand and unify the sides – ironically the closest and bravest world figure to set foot into the situation is the Pope who visited both sides recently and spoke on equal terms with them.
Signing petitions about this is about the best any one of us is able to do and we know that that isn’t an answer. The UN won’t deliver statement or a resolution because they can’t agree – or work out – what is the best plan of action. So we sit and watch the images from Palestine, the Israeli soldiers funerals, dismembered children in Syria, the body count rising in Iraq and we are empty. Not emotional fatigue but empty of answers, hope or solutions. Think how the politicians feel, they have that feeling with the eyes of the world on them waiting for a decisive move to stop it all from reaching Armageddon.
There is no humour to be found in the death of innocents, no cartoon of Benjamin Netanjahu in the broadsheets that can do anything but make us look away, no light at the end of the tunnel. Maybe we should stand back and let it all play out – any time we have intervened in that region we have made it worse. Anyone who argues otherwise is selective in their memories and history lessons. Perhaps the fact we’ve never properly stepped in to this properly is the reason it gets worse?
But I can’t look away. I see the dozen children’s bodies lying on a street bloodied and broken. The tears of parents as the walk behind their infants being carried to their graves. The maimed and scared cowering from the next missile attack.
The only emotion I am left with is relief. Relief it’s not me and my family, my children facing the oncoming storm. And when that is the only emotion left you know that fear is winning the battle; hopelessness and the inability to comprehend come a close second.
I don’t know if we can live in that world for much longer.