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Israeli And Palestinian Children Find Common Ground

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posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:16 AM
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This is what it will take. This story warmed my heart when I read it this morning, I hope it will do the same for you all.

Palestinians and Israelis find common ground and friendships at Camp Project Common Bond. This camp is held yearly for children 15 to 20 years old that have lost at least one family member to terrorism. If you take the time to read it, you maybe stuck with the same question I had... Would the children do a better job at stopping this war than anyone else thus far? It sure seems that way.




It could be a scene from any summer camp: a group of teens paints each others’ faces and puts the final flourishes on signs, while clapping along to battle chants against the idyllic backdrop of a leafy campus courtyard. Badges hanging from their necks boast small national flags, and a cacophony of accents represents more than 20 countries.

Like other camps, friendships at Project Common Bond spark fast and strong. But here that connection stems from a deeper, darker place. Each camper, between 15 and 20 years old, is in attendance because he or she has lost a family member to terrorism. They’ve had parents killed in 9/11, uncles and cousins murdered on both sides of the Israel-Palestine conflict, and experienced firsthand the violence in Northern Ireland.


I had no idea this even existed which is a shame, as I am sure I'm not the only who didn't. There are probably plenty of folks that would be willing to donate their time and/or money to this cause. It's as worthy as many more and in doing this they are educating the children (those coming from countries that are seemingly always at war) to hopefully be better and do better than what they have grown up learning thus far in their young lives.


But for one week each summer, they leave their often-turbulent homelands behind and come together to discuss the far-flung conflicts that have touched each of them so personally. Together, they reveal their histories, teaching and learning from the shared tragedies of the past.


Again... this is what is needed IMO. So many people only know what they see on tv or hear from their leaders. There's ALWAYS so much more to the story. I head a saying once that said... I don't care how flat you make a pancake, it still has two sides. That applies here as well. When one is able to put a face and a name to what/who they are taught to kill/hate... it tends to make it a bit more personal.


This year, the week is especially tough for kids coming from both side of the Israel/Palestine conflict. Just a few days before they arrived at camp, Israel launched a ground operation in Gaza and the death toll climbed to 340. As the week played out, casualties tripled. For the Israeli and Palestinian campers, being in a comfortable Pennsylvania suburb was often a guilt-inducing respite from the escalating conflict their families were facing at home.


How many of us can imagine feeling guilty for going to summer camp and worry that our family might be wiped out while we are gone? It would be hard to deal with that kind of stress as an adult. I can't imagine having to deal with it as a child. It's unfathomable.


Avisar, who sports a green handkerchief and a face streaked with green paint, is from the city of Holon, near Tel Aviv. In three years he’ll have to begin his mandatory army service, a role he feels conflicted about: it’s his patriotic duty, but it’s not representative of his wish for peace.


We can see here that this child has been taught to want to serve his mandatory army service because that is the patriotic thing to do. He knows that it's not something he really wants to do and he is struggling with it because he is aware that is not how he will ever see the peace he wishes for.


There have been arguments between campers with conflicting viewpoints in the past, camp leaders say, but these disagreements are prime for use as a teaching lesson within small groups. But this year, when it comes to the Israeli and Palestinian campers, there has been nothing but respect between the campers, according to Avisar, even as their two countries are increasingly pit against each other.

“[The Palestinians are] really nice people…I thought there would be more anger at me,” Avisar says. “I came here like I don’t know how the Palestinians and Algerians would react to me, I thought at least one kid would be angry at me, but no—it’s good.”


Another example of how hate is bred into people. They aren't born with it and even children know that it isn't right. Both sides automatically expect to be treated badly or meet instant hatred, but out of their country and away from the propaganda.... They coexist with absolutely no problems and are even able to befriend one another.


“It’s not fair to tell only your side of the story,” Avisar says. “We’re not all the same—some people from our side think all of them want to kill us. No, it’s nothing like that. I’m trying to bring the idea of peace by looking [at] both sides of the story, and by accepting each other.”


Out of the mouths of babes, eh?? It really couldn't be said any better than that could it? I'd we could get even half of the people involved in this mess to realize this.... We wouldn't still be hearing about this tragedy all day every day. There would be more talks of peace and less rockets. More reaching out and less killing.

Maybe we should let the children take over from here??

It's really a good article and you can read all of it here:
www.thedailybeast.com...




edit on 8/4/2014 by Kangaruex4Ewe because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:26 AM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

i have to say what i have been reading on ATS over the last couple of weeks has really got me down....this is a nice reprieve from all the hate....S&F



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:34 AM
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The children and for that matter the vast majority of the people from either nation were never the problem to begin with.



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:38 AM
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a reply to: ~Lucidity

That was pretty much the whole point of my post. These wars will never stop until we can keep people from breeding hate and fear into their children. BOTH SIDES. The children are not born wanting war and hating each other as we can clearly see in the article. They are raised that way and most live and die knowing only what they were indoctrinated to know and naught else.

If we can put a stop to that... All of it will stop. These children do not hate each other and when removed from the atmosphere of constant propaganda, they have no reason to start.

They are smarter than the adults.


originally posted by: hopenotfeariswhatweneed
a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

i have to say what i have been reading on ATS over the last couple of weeks has really got me down....this is a nice reprieve from all the hate....S&F


I'm glad you enjoyed it. Like you... I have seen enough disheartening headlines. It's a tragedy on both sides for sure. There are far too many innocents dying for absolutely no reason other than they were told they had to hate and had to fight. This shows there are other options. The hate doesn't have to be taught.
edit on 8/4/2014 by Kangaruex4Ewe because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:40 AM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

It's not even the adults that can't get along or even instill this into the childenr. People of all nations, religions, races can and do get along every day.

It's the governments that cannot. And that is a very, select few. They love to divide and conquer, and not only in this case. Look around the U.S. We get away with the wars our government wages because they lie to us and set us to bickering while they do what they want.

If governments wanted peace for their people there would be peace. But there is no money in peace for them. It's really quite simple.
edit on 8/4/2014 by ~Lucidity because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 06:45 AM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

thats right... we are not born into hate it is taught...

kids are far more insightful than we realize



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 07:03 AM
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Governments and those in control of the military feed on each other. It's like a CEO, they think they know more about the day to day operations and morale of their employees than they actually do! They don't have a close personal relationship with the people on the streets. It's easy for them to call for wars and to murder people and families thousands of miles away when they don't even walk among them. You have people who are ahead of the military who were once trained to kill, and have the mentality that the only way to solve a situation is with weapons. There's no compassion there, people are just targets to achieve their short sighted end game.

Innocence is lost when adults teach their twisted ideology to their children.



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 07:07 AM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

This camp is a great idea, but it is very small.

I believe that if some lasting peace is to be found, between ALL the warring tribes of Earth, then this sort of program must be extended, more nations must involve themselves with it, and thereby extend understanding between peoples.

I honestly and genuinely believe, that only by way of regular folk from these war torn lands, mixing with people from the lands with whom their nation is oft at loggerheads, can common ground be established, and friendships which make the sort of conflict we see today, utterly impossible. But I would not limit this sort of activity to children who have lost loved ones to war and terror. I believe it is good for all children, to meet others of their age group, from all manner of backgrounds.

When I was growing up, in senior school, there were children from various different nations, ethnic, religious, and cultural backgrounds. The problems at our school (which was a violent and horrific place to be educated) were nothing to do with that, and rather more to do with a poor school board, lack of discipline and a total lack of care on the part of the head teacher for most of my time there.

The fact, however, that there were kids from all over, Pakistan, Nigeria, Kosovo, Malaysia, and others, meant that I had early exposure to different cultures than the one which I was bought up in. Also, because our town is sort of a hub for people who have moved down from the north, there were plenty of kids from other areas in my own country. I found this very beneficial to my development, because hearing their stories of where they grew up, or where their parents came from, alerted me to the fact that my life was lived without an appropriately complex understanding of the lives of others (which I had theorised to myself years previously, but the confirmation was helpful in motivating me to change that).

There was a period, when I was at school, when there was much in the news of the conflicts in Kosovo. Shortly after the news started picking up on that subject, our school received a new student. He had been snatched from his parents as a young lad, and his hands turned to the business of war in the region. Apparently he had been rescued, by his mother and father no less, a few years later, and they had all left the region with all due haste and come to Britain as seekers of asylum. He was fourteen or fifteen years of age when I met him, and you could tell he had lived hard.

His biceps were the size of my entire skull, and he was, in general, proportioned in epic scale. At that time I think I was about five foot eight, five foot nine in height. The top of my head, was about level with the centre of his chest at that time. He got this way, I discovered, by hauling ammo crates and boxes of grenades around, and generally humping great weights around, on and off trucks, in and out of dug out positions, and occasionally wielding heavy guns without a mount.

He had been places, and seen things, that occasionally drained the colour from his face, and he would tell me in hushed conversations at break times, about some of those things. The details are sketchy now, as I have drunk considerable quantities of rum since last we spoke of these things, or indeed since last I saw him. However, despite all the things he had seen, and indeed done during that dark time, he was as staunch and fine a friend as one could possibly hope to have. Unfailingly polite until pressed to righteous anger, respectful toward the female members of the student body, helpful to a fault, and yet terrifyingly efficient when it came to conflict "resolution".

Bloody good egg. He opened my eyes in alot of respects, with regard to my geopolitical awareness.



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 10:37 AM
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Propaganda feel good piece...
These kids will return home then join the "military" and become fully indoctrinated or just get bombed into infinity while they sleep.
Go ahead and flame on, because you know I speak the truth.
If only they would invest more into camps and relations then they did on bombs..
Until then, this is just fluff.



posted on Aug, 4 2014 @ 11:48 PM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

Cherish these children. They are the future leaders. They need protection from the hate.
edit on 4-8-2014 by Not Authorized because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 5 2014 @ 12:07 AM
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originally posted by: Not Authorized
a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

Cherish these children. They are the future leaders. They need protection from the hate.


I absolutely agree with you NA.


As corny as it does sound... They are our future. They aren't just their country's future, but all our futures too.

It has taken generations for interracial couples to be as accepted as they are now and in a few more, their will be no interracial people.... There'll be just people. I think the same thing applies here. If we can get a couple of generations of children to stick to this line of thinking, in a few years they won't even remember what they were all fighting to the death for.

The children are the key.



posted on Aug, 5 2014 @ 05:39 PM
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originally posted by: g146541
Propaganda feel good piece...
These kids will return home then join the "military" and become fully indoctrinated or just get bombed into infinity while they sleep.
Go ahead and flame on, because you know I speak the truth.
If only they would invest more into camps and relations then they did on bombs..
Until then, this is just fluff.


It may be a propaganda feel good piece and most all of them will probably go back home and do what they consider their duty to their country, but we've got to start somewhere. And this somewhere seems as good to me as any other. It may not affect anything on a grand scale but this may well get the ball rolling on something that will.

JMO YMMV of course.



posted on Aug, 6 2014 @ 07:36 AM
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a reply to: Kangaruex4Ewe

Signifies the positive potentials still existent within the species of MAN... If many at odds would only pay close attention.

Nice share Kangaruex4Ewe


NAMASTE
LOVE LIGHT ETERNIA*******



posted on Aug, 6 2014 @ 08:06 AM
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there is no swooping big thing that can be done to fix these conflicts, but maybe the baby steps in places like this camp can help start these countries on a path to peace. It will be a long path but it is worth the effort in my opinion.



posted on Aug, 6 2014 @ 08:10 AM
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Is good to see there's some hope still out there in this world. With people making a real effort to make a difference the way it's supposed to be done.





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