Staff Editorial: Israeli-Palestinian Week


Starting on Monday, as reported in this week’s issue, a new coalition of organizations concerned with the Isreali-Palestinian conflict called Shalaam will host Macalester’s first Israeli-Palestinian week. There will be documentaries, panels and cultural celebrations throughout the week, all focused on fostering a safe environment for widely divergent opinions. The Mac Weekly would like to briefly express our belief in the potential of this week, and urge all interested students to participate respectfully and honestly. It hardly needs to be established that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the most pressing issues of our time. The United States’ close relationship to Israel, the long and complex history of the conflict and the associated violence all make this a major issue on the world stage. From what we’ve heard in interviews and discussions with many of the participants, both sides are represented by serious-minded and rational people—and we are especially refreshed by the week’s focus on not homogenizing views or reaching a consensus, as Shahar Eberzon ’12 said. To attempt to reach a conclusion for this decades old issue in a week would be facetious, and to pretend that people won’t get angry about it would be delusional. Honest opinions on an issue this divisive are going to create passionate disagreement, and we feel that this is healthy, natural and the only way to really see the views on both sides of the conflict. Of course, respect is vital–anoymous internet insults help no one to understand or grow–but if you participate in this week, The Mac Weekly urges you to state your views honestly, and listen to others in turn.