Within five minutes of conversation with an Israeli Jew, you will discover how many family members she lost in the Holocaust. I did not hear a number lower than 70%. Unimaginable stories of horrific loss and/or miraculous escape or survival are ingrained in the national psyche of the Israeli people. Informed by the stories of their grandparents and great grandparents, they live with societal PTSD.
Within five minutes of conversation with a Palestinian, you will learn how many of her family members have been or are currently political prisoners in Israeli detention camps. Today, there are 12,000 Palestinians in such camps. Further, you will hear stories of the village that was once hers, past livelihoods that are no more, life in occupied territory, and how many times she, personally, has been held at gun point by Israeli troopers. Informed by their own stories, the Palestinian people live with societal PTSD.
For the Israeli Jew, the story of their people begins not in Genesis, but in the death camps of WWII.
For the Palestinian, the story begins not in ancient times, but in 1948.
The Israeli national slogan is “Never Again!”
The Palestinian national slogan is “Your Holocaust created our Catastrophe!”
The Palestinian cannot touch the pain of the Israeli Jew because, if she does, she fears her validation will cause the Jews to justify their acts of injustice against her people.
The Israeli Jew cannot touch the pain of the Palestinian because, if she does, she fears that the Palestinian will either hold her to just practices or take advantage of her lowered defenses.
The Jew and the Palestinian are locked in a Vicious Dance which keeps them focused on the past.