Friendship? Palestine and Israel.....

Mona Sbouh and Yaara Tal

Readers familiar with the blog, know that the tenor of many of the posts is one in which we seek to explore the commonality between people, faiths and cultures as opposed the differences

As a person who has lived within three distinct cultures and faiths, I understand the nuances that may perplex individuals who are always looking from the "outside in," and based upon this cursory perspective draw conclusions that are specious at best and malicious at worst.

The adoption of these entrenched positions and beliefs are required in order to dehumanize the object of our derision and animosity. This is not to say that there is not some basis in fact for such antipathy, but generational antipathy is usually a consequence of learned behavior versus direct experience.

In the end, we are all human, and while many humans do very bad things, just as many recognize that we all share the desire to love and be loved, to understand and be understood, and to live peacefully with each other.

This is not always easy which is why I felt it was important to feature these two young women who are braving the divide. Interviewed on Radio Netherlands Worldwide, an Israeli and Palestinian teenager tell the compelling story of how they overcame their fears to become best friends.

Featured in this same segment is an interview with a Muslim and a Hindu filmmaker whose relationship was tested and strengthened while working in conflict-torn Kashmir; and a man in Zimbabwe who now preaches against the intertribal violence he once took part in.

In the final segment, the interviewer speaks with several Sri Lankan activists who are working toward overcoming caste divisions, as well as a survivor of Sarajevo who reflects on the war crimes trial of Radovan Karadzic."

Listen to Mona Sbouh and Yaara-Tal and others share their stories about bridging the divide at the link below. 

The State We’re In, 2 January 2010: Radio Netherlands Worldwide