Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Collecting and Processing

The day after my first post here, Israel launched a ground invasion into the Gaza Strip. I got the news via a text message from a friend while standing in line at a grocery store, waiting to buy a bottle of Squirt soda. I spent the rest of the day glued to CNN, MSNBC, and flicking past Fox News out of curiousity. And since then, I've had nothing to say about it. I kept reading the news in the paper, reading Op-Ed articles (which usually only serve to infuriate me), checking the Huffington Post, the New York Times, reading anything I could, waiting for the moment when how I felt about all this would crystallize into something useful and meaningful. The most illuminating thing to me about the last three days is the realization that the moment when all would be come clear is not going to come.

I once read that the only language which Power understands is violence. I must not be part of Power. I don't understand how lobbing rockets or sending jets full of bombs or rolling tanks through neighborhoods will promote peace. I don't understand the mentality behind institutional violence which tells us it will all stop as soon as "they" see the error of their ways. For fighting endlessly without thought for your people. I don't understand the blatant and willful bias of the media, or of people voicing hateful and acidic opinions about things they do not know.

What I am beginning to understand is the feeling of sorrow, of feeling tired, and helpless. Endless war serves only the people in Power - it's what gets them there and it's what keeps them there. And, it keeps us snivelling at their feet, waiting for them to just do something already. But what I have gotten out of the last three days is the reminder that this - the killing, the blood, the blame, the bias - this has got to stop. It will require looking closely at the situation from both sides, and at ourselves and our own prejudices, to get to the bottom of it. People need to stop calling each other "anti-Semites" or "terrorists" or other such names because they don't see eye to eye, but rather must address the wounds on both sides and seek to heal them, rather than salt them. Easier said than done, granted. However, creating more wounds, be it from rocket fire or from ground invasions, will only serve to deepen the divide.

1 comment:

Josh said...

AMEN! But ... I have no solutions either. Should a nation or a people just stop defending itself? And then believe that this blatant show of trust will lead to peace? It seems that's what Jesus did. Would he have done the same if he'd had a family to protect?