Encounter 184 – 24.9.2021

When I got out of the car, a few minutes before 1:00 PM, a drizzle of rain began in “our” pine grove.
I told myself it was a sign from heaven or from Mary and moved to the lower level to settle inside the building.
Inside were some cyclists hiding from the rain and refusing to drink coffee.
Ramy arrived, and there were three of the riders left interested in a story and coffee, until the bike rental time ran out.
They are from Sderot and its surroundings and after hearing a little about us and the greatness of Gaza, they managed to tell briefly about “their” Gaza: everyone in hes unique style sees it as a dangerous and threatening place, most of them agree that there are good and bad ones there as well.
These were pedaled on their way and Hanan is already coming, followed by Bella and Malki.
We talked about the “Iron Dome” – does the protection it gives us promote peace (fewer casualties and fewer reasons to react aggressively) or vice versa? (Helps to perpetuate the concept of “conflict management”).
Then the conversation spread to other districts and it was interesting and important, but I had to leave early, so…
See you next week!
We were: Rami, 3 riders from Sderot, Hanan, Bella, Malki and Nahshi.
Wrote: Nahshi.

Encounter 183 -17.9.2021

Last week, following the escape of the prisoners from Gilboa Prison, I wrote an imaginary summary in which, as an imaginary story, one of the fugitives reached our circle … (the real summary to remind you, published last week by Nahshi). I sent the imaginary summary to a number of readers including Ramy.
Today, after we gathered all (Nahshi, Hayuta, Shmulik, Oded, Rami, Malki) in the shade of the pines, wind on our faces and coffee in our hands and no more participants (except Limor who arrived at the end accompanied by the dogs – Nina and Yefet), at this moment, Rami chose to read To our ears the “imaginary summary.”
In the circle, a discussion arose around the theoretical issue of “to extradite or to not extradite”: between the two ends – Different possibilities unfolded.
After exhausting the possibilities, the discussion shifted to the question of compliance with the law – are there cases in which it is justified not to comply with the law? Comparisons were made to Poles who hid Jews in the WW2, in violation of the law. Situations of non-compliance with traffic laws were discussed in extreme cases and should there be a degree of “logic” and “fairness” in the authorities’s response, enforcing and judicial. The issue of identification with the “enemy” has arisen (I put the word “enemy” between quotes because in my opinion, sometimes there are others who choose the enemy for us …). Does the law ignore the broader context that served as a ground for committing the offense and focus on formulating it only in the interest?
From there we moved on to “materials” that affect the process of drawing conclusions for each and every one of us. Quotes were quoted from an interview published in the Haaretz newspaper over the weekend with Yaakov Sharet, an opinion column by Ehud Gera that responds to Michal Weitz’s claims as they appear in her film “Blue Box” was mentioned, the organization “Zochrot” was mentioned as an organization that brings a one-sided narrative of justice. Someone also argued that a “state” is an organization that brings a one-sided narrative of justice, and there was resentment at the comparison.
Thus, in the discussion, which, although not conducted in accordance with the rules of the circle, was certainly respectful and attentive, we arrived at four o’clock and each went to his own way.
We were: Nahshi, Hayuta, Shmulik, Malki, Oded, Rami, Limor (Nina and Yefet)
Wrote: Oded

Encounter 182 – 10.9.2021

Between holiday and Saturday, feel like summer is over, there is a pleasant breeze and good air. Only Gaza is still closed and we are here to mention.
“We” is Gadir, Jaber, Bella, Malki, Uzi, Oded, Mark, Shmulik and Nahshi.
Oded and Uzi spoke about experiences of transporting patients to and from Gaza as part of “The Road to Recovery.”
We talked about the escape of the prisoners from Gilboa Prison and the riots it ignited.
We went back in history to the Middle East before the political partition and were updated on the situation of the Bedouin in the unrecognized villages.
Gadir read posts that influenced her this week and we heard about a meeting from yesterday in which an Israeli woman (Ruby Damlin) and a Palestinian (Bassam Aramin) from the Bereaved Families Forum spoke about the ability to forgive and the exciting personal path each went through.
Coffee, snacks, best wishes and that’s it – hope next week there will be more autumn and more peace.
Happy New Year!
Wrote: Nahshi

Encounter 181 -3.9.2021

Today, after two months and another 21 hours, Roni is back with us!
Every week we try to be creative and send an original and seductive photo / invitation on WhatsApps and here, how simple, a message from Roni “I’m coming” and people are flowing from all over to our “Lighthouse” …
Rami, who was preparing for a trip to Ein Harod for the celebration of the century (since 1921!), Rejects everything, gets on the first car he finds and arrives.
Mary, who does not leave the house if the Ice Age has not arrived, completely ignores the scorching heat and arrives.
Noa arrived after maybe a year,
Vivian arrived by no means, for the second week in a row.
Jaber, who announced at work that Roni is coming and that it is not a topic for discussion at all, collects Radir on the way back from one of the meetings she participates in on the subject of peace / coexistence / inter-religious / women’s empowerment / Wadi Atir (partial list …) and together they reach the lighthouse.
Dina and Malki come from the deep south
And of course come the regular Nahshi, Shmulik and I who collect Hayuta on the way and spread a rug made from the soil of the desert, on which school chairs and pine trees are embroidered and in the center of the rug embroidered a class table on which are embroidered in various flavors the best hospitality.
Roni is not alone: Ovadia – her partner and husband also come with her! 14 woman and man and all thanks to the words “I am coming”! Oh well, circle …
Vivian talks about Micha Goodman who argues that we should shrink the conflict and not look for a solution at the moment. It is difficult for him with the moral damage of controlling another people and yet there is currently no solution so one has to invest the energy in shrinking the conflict and reducing the friction.
Shmulik says that bridges of dialogue and reconciliation between local populations should be built in every area cell.
Hayuta says the combination of the words “humane occupation” has always been contrary to her perception. Today she is more willing to listen.
Ronny really missed us. Even during her hospitalization, she continued to handle requests that flowed from Gaza … She is constantly involved in what is happening in Gaza and in constant contact with the people who need it. Regarding requests for donations that flow and the deliberation between donating to a single needy person or donating to an organization, she thinks that help should be given according to ability and requests …
We were all happy to see that our donation helped and hundreds of schoolbags were donated and distributed to the needy.
Shmulik has something more to say … he believes in connection with people and says “I am reluctant to shrink the conflict” … he counts his personal relations with Palestinians and thinks this is the way to act, the personal connection!
Nahshi consulted an expert and heard from him that every week he comes to the lighthouse, the resolution of the conflict approaches at least a week … so he comes every week.
Noa: Follows and posts on Facebook. There are several hundred people exposed to our posts every week … her heart is here.
Dina repeatedly says that everyone should do the little he can. Was involved in a huge donation project to Gaza. But the frustration is great because for every step forward two go backwards. Every big story starts small and that’s what we do here, but do not progress and do not have to despair, we have to keep going and one day something good will happen.
Ovadia: He went up with Roni to “Hill of Good Deeds” and up the road he got a little tired … Usually, on Fridays during these hours he rests, but for Roni (and for us) he’s here today. It matters what you do here, he says, you are pioneers who are on the right path. When those who oppose your opinion join you, you will know that you have done well. His contribution to relations with neighbors was when he was younger in formal and state meetings, but when the supportive state policy disappeared, he had nothing to contribute. Until the age of 15, he studied as an only Jewish student at the Al Zahar School in Cairo. The management told him that it was not possible to do a religious lesson on his own and that he would choose between Christianity and Islam lessons. He went to Muslim religious classes and learned a lot about Islam until the war in 48. When Palestinian deportees arrived in Cairo, hostility began. Thanks to his studies and life with the Muslims, he acquired an ability to understand the Islamic side. There is forgiveness and compassion there, he says. The extremists interpret in a way that suits them and people are dragged. It spoils religion. Need to have a conversation with those who are interested in listening.
Vivian talks about an Israeli Palestinian monthly edited jointly by Ziad Abu Ziad and Hillel Shenkar. They held an event this week to promote the involvement of women in the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. One participant said that in her opinion it is still not possible to involve Palestinian women in the process. There will be Palestinian anger over the wording of the document because there is no use of the word “occupation” and no opposition to the occupation, And even Palestinian women are not allowed to support such a document. Donate to a young girl who managed to get out of Gaza and needs money to start a new life in Canada (speaking of the dilemma between donating to an individual or to an organization that buys schoolbags for example …)
Radir: Comes from a meeting where they talked about how the coronavirus changed lives. How we discovered the zoom … Radir is trying to explore what can be done at this point in time. The people in the area are interdependent. Bennett’s activities are very interesting in her opinion (meetings with King Abdullah in Jordan and with A. Sisi in Egypt). Radir constantly states on social media her grief over all the victims of the conflict and, among other things, expressed grief over the death of the soldier on the Gaza border. She was reprimanded by Jews. But Radir has Jewish companies, some of which have daughters and sons in the army … Too bad for any victim. She is against violence but what will a person who is attacked in his home do? She asks … she wants to show that even in Islam there is opposition to wars. True Islam does not sound enough on the surface.
Ovadia say that many people do not understand Radir’s position and that is why relations between the peoples have deteriorated in the last 30 years.
Shmulik tells of the way of Rabbi Froman of Tekoa who believed that religion should be the bridge between the peoples.
Dina says she lacks the voices that oppose extremists on both sides. Lacking condemnation to extremists, there is a fear of coming out against them.

Jaber joins the views of Radir and Ovadia. We, he says, think we know everything … a lot of respect should be given to the knowledge of Ovadia that comes from study and personal experience. Jaber tells of a special friendship during his childhood with a child sprouting. Today the settlement is fenced and there is hostility among the neighboring populations. We, he says, have increased the hatred, all of us.
These are the things I wrote down, of course there were many more, but whoever if you managed to get this far, probably already longing for the end of the summary …
Before we parted we dipped an apple in the honey that Mary brought … Happy New Year!
We were: Roni, Ovadia, Rami, Vivian, Mary, Jaber, Noa, Malki, Dina, Radir, Nahshi, Hayuta, Shmulik, Oded.
Rote: Oded.