The world has watched in horror over the past week as war erupted in Israel. It began last Saturday as members of Hamas launched an offensive from the Gaza Strip into Israel, killing men, women, and children. The group also took hostages, many remaining in the Gaza Strip. Earlier today, Israel dropped leaflets over northern Gaza, alerting its 1.1 million residents that it needs to evacuate as a ground offensive is about to begin. It is a sad, brutal, and complicated situation.
“I am Palestinian,” he begins. “My father was born in Jerusalem. I have family that lives in Jerusalem and Gaza. Family members have been killed. Their homes reduced to ash. My family are not terrorists. They do not want war. They want to live their lives in their homes with their families peacefully. On the other side of the wall, many Israeli people feel the same way. While they may not be my blood family, it is as horrifying to see innocent Israeli citizens killed.
“I will never support the murder or brutalization of innocent people anywhere. I condemn the terroristic acts of last week, I condemn the terroristic acts that are currently unfolding in present time, and I condemn all future terroristic acts no matter who commits them.
“Right now, over 2 million Palestinians are being denied the right to food, water, energy, and fuel in the world’s largest open air prison. More than 2 million Palestinians, half of whom are children. No aid or support of any kind is being allowed to these peaceful civilians.
“They are unable to flee Gaza. They will be killed if they try. There would still be no place they could go. Even if there was, they stay put knowing that if they leave now they will never have a country to call their own ever again. Eventually then, the Palestinian people would be totally eradicated. The thought that very soon I may no longer have a people or an ancestral home is unimaginable.
“To my fellow Palestinians, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I will forever be inspired by your will to survive and endure. To the Jewish community, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I am a better person today for the impact my Jewish friends have had on my life. I hate that the past week has caused a greater divide in all our lives. My heart breaks for the Palestinian and Jewish communities.
“Every person deserves the right to exist. Every person deserves the right to be free.”
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