Encounter 175 – 23.7.2021

As usual, another Friday at the Lighthouse. We started four and the discussion was around the positions and opinions on historical and contemporary issues relating to the region and its population.

For a brief moment, we were visited by Golan, Keren, Ziv, Maayan and Ella: a father who travels with four girls, two of them his daughters and two of their friends. Golan had a coffee and the girls were interested in a “star-kite” created by Hanan, who got the inspiration for its construction from the kites that “starred” in ours (before the balloons…) combined with a photo taken in Gaza with a girl holding a “star of hope” from the project Of a group of Americans for strengthening populations in the world affected by wars or natural disasters. The girls asked, we answered and they continued on their way.

We’re in the historic debate… Shula and Danny arrived. A retired couple from the center of the country who decided to visit friends in the area. With them we dealt with one of the most popular sports in Israel: finding common friends that are not here at the moment… Shula and Danny stayed for two cups of coffee and went on to other commitments.
Nahshi signed for a lone ATV touring near us. Two 18-year-olds from a local community, Yinon and Gilad, arrived.
Rami, chooses the “circle” intriduction version for 18-year-olds before enlistment in the army and presents us as part of the region population. He will return at the end of the circle…
Nahshi, as one who grew up on the Gaza Strip border, says Gaza is acquaintances and friends. Maintain some telephone contact. He remembers good days. Learns and is interested every day in what is happening to them. Believes that the great days of Gaza will return. Maybe the meetings here at our Lighthouse will contribute.
Shmulik recites God-style Gaza to Moses, “You will see her from the other side and you will not come to her”… Hope the future will be different. A discourse of everyone’s attention is created here in the “circle”. The ability to see the other side is limited.
For me, Oded, Gaza is frustration, anger and mental reckoning. Frustration that I can not really help people who live a life of suffering in the neighborhood to me. Anger that the country where I live manages to create repression and build a wall (literally…) and actually make 2 million people disappear. A mental account of any process I go through in re-learning all this complex of man and earth in the region in which we walk.
Yinon: Gaza is an enemy place. Do not approach. They want to destroy our country. He adds that he was never there. For the situation to work out it has to come from their side. If they wanted to stop the violence, they could. Evacuating Gush Katif is the beginning of hatred.
Gilad: I hear a lot from my father and grandfather about Gaza. The grandfather told him that he cried twice in his life – once for his father and once for a Gazan soulmate who was killed. There are good people there. While there are few who hate us, they are the decision makers. Once they reach out they will get two hands back. If they do not stop with all the hostility, it will not end.
Rami: Gaza is a mystery. As a tour guide a lot to deal with history: Many years ago, Gaza was the center of the world !. Here, (he gestures around with his hands) Abraham grazes his flock and here he meets Avimelech. More than half of the world’s population sees Abraham as a father and his life is conducted here! There is a sea road that crosses east-west and it passes through Gaza. Moving in it between the two great kingdoms. Gaza at the seam between the blowing land and the desert. Something in this whole process, which is happening with Gaza now is a malfunction and we have a part in it. Not enough consideration, not enough we darsd to look, maybe we tried to reach out an unanswered hand… Anyway, one day Gaza and 3 other towns remained imprisoned. Children grow up and are born there without a horizon and without hope. Gaza has been forgotten by the world. There is no reason why Gaza should not be a glorious part of the world. Change will not come by one party. He had a teacher who said that if we have not yet found (peace…) it only means that we have not found… Rami tells the young people that we all have a responsibility and says that people from Gaza ask him if there are those in Israel who care about the Gazans? Recalls the excitement of Marwan who visited us here in the circle and asked that we continue to mention and speak Gaza at our meetings.
Like the girls at the beginning of the meeting, Gilad also asks about the kite that Hanan built and we tell…

We were: Keren, Ziv, Maayan, Ella, Golan, Shula, Danny, Rami, Nahshi, Shmulik, Oded, Yinon, Gilad.

Wrote: Oded