Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Random conversations
on a random day during the current Gaza war

He: (when I arrived at a work meeting) How are you?
Me: Very troubled (by the war)
He: Do you have anyone inside? (this is Jewish Israeli speak for "Do you have a personal connection to anyone in the (Israeli) army who is fighting in Gaza?")
Me: (I expected a different question from someone who has dedicated much of his life to promoting the concept of universality of suffering) Yes, I have a million and a half Palestinians inside (refers to the fact that 1.4 million Palestinians in the Gaza strip live under siege in a virtual prison, unable to enter and leave at will)
He: Oh.

She: (his wife) Now everybody's had their share - in the Gulf War, it was Tel Aviv, (that was attacked by Iraqi Scud missiles) in Jerusalem we had our bus bombs, (multiple Palestinian suicide attacks 2001-2004) they got it (Katyusha rocket attacks) in the north in the (2nd) Lebanon war (2006) and now they're getting it (various frequent missile attacks) in the south (in the current Gaza war)

He: (another humanist) If they (the Palestinian population of Gaza) teach their children not to value life and to want to be martyrs, aren't they all Hamas?
Me: What does it matter, it doesn't give us legitimacy to destroy a million and a half people
He: I guess you're right

Me: I really hope they're going to agree on a ceasefire
She: (works in the Israeli news media and has been working very long hours since the start of the Israeli military operation in Gaza) I just hope they have a 48-hour ceasefire on Friday and Saturday so that I can get some rest.

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