If you’re not following the Lebanese bloggers site (and you’re following events in Lebanon / Israel / Gaza), I strongly recommend you go there; something important is happening.
This post (link) has a comment thread that is evolving into a discussion between some folks in Israel and in Lebanon who are striving for some understanding… and looking for a solution.
There are well over 200 comments on that thread now, so rather than trying to read them all, I suggest starting with the 8:29 am comment, in which someone named Neri Bar-On (in Tel Aviv) opened an enlightening discussion with this:
What do you think are the conditions that we, the people, can cooperate and combine our vision into a safer place to our children?
I wish to know how much the Lebanonize can imagine economic cooperation combined with social and educational development with us the Israelis. What are the Israel behaviors that can make the Israeli existence appealing to the Lebanonize. After all, we can expect this round to end, I do not know if Israel will win all its objectives but it made clear that Lebanon should not enable aggression from its border.
I can say that the Israelis in general are seeking such relationship. But we can not understand the aggression (We are thought in our schools that the Arabs were against our “just” idea to create Jewish state, but in our books it not clears why, beside assumption of inherent hatred).
What do not understand what symbolize in our existence that makes the situation irresolvable? ( I can take harsh words, I want to see the deep causes and it not need to be pleasant to me as Israeli)
I think that we may need to adjust our “Zionist” vision. We showed a unique talent to create a modern stable state (Just notice that Arik Sharon’s power transition was simple even when he got into comma). We have one of the most efficient army in the world (I know that we build it on top our war with the Palestinian and Arabs with support of the US, but we knew how to do it), and our economy is relatively better then the Arab world economies. I think our new vision should be to share it with our neighbors and the Palestinians and put the safety and prosperity of the whole region on higher level then the ethno-centric idea of Jewish state. There is no danger to jews today beside the enemies created by establishing Israel.
But at these circumstances I cannot see many Israelis joining me to create such new vision because we feel that we are surrounded by Arab enemies who will take our knowledge and abilities and use them against us. The current attack is highly supported by the Israeli public because we see it as a long term message to secure our citizens hence it preserve for us an ethno-centric world view.
The ensuing dialogue is why Polimom isn’t posting. I’m reading… refreshing the screen… reading…
However the current crisis resolves, these are the voices of hope.