Why did these four youngsters have to die?

Published 08.07.2014 00:15

The Palestine problem needs peace negotiations to come to a successful end in order for the youth to survive, however, it seems to be in a new crisis that was triggered by the killing of three Israeli and one Palestinian teenager. The killing of Muhammed Ebu Khdeir by making him drink gasoline, suggests that as much as it is horrible, it was not a coincidence as he was kidnapped and tortured to death out of vengeance. In other words, the spirit of war occupies the territory by using young people.

Eyal Yifrach, Naftali Fraenkel, Gilad Shaar and Muhammad Abu Khdeir were the four youngsters who were killed. These four youngsters, like countless others, could have been living in a two-nation state or working in the same state intuitions together for their joint country if peace had been established. They could have been friends. I know it is a long shot given the current circumstances, yet when peace comes, as it should, this is likely what would happen in time.

Israeli President Benjamin Netanhayu gave a hurried response, although the murder of the three youngsters has not been proven to be related to Hamas. In the sweeping operation in the West Bank, six Palestinians were killed with 400 arrested, the roofs of Palestinian houses caved in from Israeli bombardment and, of course, attacks on Gaza followed. Hamas did not wait to respond and fired Qassam rockets to Israel.

Thus, the peace negotiations that had been conducted for nine months under U.S. arbitration came to an end. In the previous months, Pope Francis I visited the holy lands and later on, a peace prayer was held in the Vatican with Palestinian and Israeli leaders.

There is a need for brave leaders and a persistent will for peace. The choices of weak-willed leaders for maintaining the status quo do not overlap with the expectations of nations. Israel wants peace and the reason is very simple: this situation is not sustainable. This can only go on as long as Israel holds its power potential. However, it is not certain which side the power will shift to. The best way to use that power is to institutionalize the peace and set an environment for Israeli citizens where they can live peacefully without guns. This only happens through the cooling off hatred and fear coupled with spreading equality and prosperity.

For over half a century, millions of Palestinians have been living in poverty in camps. The situation in Gaza is obvious. The policy of making Fatah and Hamas enemies, in other words, divide and conquer tactics, did not work. On the other side, Gaza rises as an exemplary ghetto while Israeli Jews spend every day in fear.

Surely, Palestine has a part to play, yet all the power and will in the region is in the hands of Israel. Acting with the idea, "God promised all the land from the shores of the Mediterranean to the Dead Sea to the Jewish people," and proceeding with an uncompromising, power-based arrogance, has not cured anything for the past half a century. It must be remembered that the biggest promise of God is peace.

If Israel and Palestine had achieved peace, presumably the Egyptian Revolution and the war in Syria would not have been a threat to Israel. On the contrary, it would have been seen as a positive development. The biggest obstacle for peace is the belief that Arabs and Muslims are barbarians and they will remain so no matter what. Consequently, they have to be treated harshly at the times. The Morsi experience in Egypt, despite all its flaws, had a potential for forming a Turkish type of democracy if there had been support for the possibility of democracy – prejudices toward Israel, the U.S. and the E.U. would have been overcome. But the exact opposite happened, and today it is seen that a terrible terrorist group like ISIS has taken over control. This might also be seen as an advantage for Israel. However, before it's resolved, the threat will grow even more when compared with the past.

In brief, there is a need for a strategy for peace that Israel and Turkey are in the heart of. Divide and conquer tactics only bring trouble.

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