Painfull hope | Ali Abu Awwad | TEDxJerusalem
"So what do you do? When this happens to you, you are not the same person." He was in conflict between his non violent political mind and his heart, "which was bleeding." "And you think how many Israelis shall I kill to heal this pain? How many Israeli mothers have to cry to experience the salty taste of my mother's tears. And how many numbers of dead people and how many graves has to swallow Israeli bodies to tell Israel that my brother did not deserve to die. Then I couldn't do anything. Thinking about revenge is easy. But wahtever I do, he's not going to come back. There is no limited number for revenge. This punishment that you think about as a victim cannot lead to any future.
"I was stuck until I met a group of bereaved Israeli families where I realized that there is another face of Israel. Israel successfully shows me Air Force tanks, check points, aggressive behaviors, but it took Israel thirty years of my life for Israel to show me Jewish tears. I couldn't imagein that Jewish people have tears or feeling, then suddenly, you see a victim and you realize that you are not the only victim. Then my whole world has changed. I became an activist for non violence and reconciliation and I realized that my real enemy is not the Jewish people. It's their fear. The fear of the Jews are our biggest enemy and the daily suffering of the Palestinians under the military occupation is the best enemy for the Israelis.
"To overcome that we have a mission. I'm not talking about peace events and dialogues and five star hotel conferences for peace where many millions of dollars are wasted there. We can hug each other and eat humus foever. I'm talking about an action, a strategy, a vision. Both sides have to reach the ocnclusion and stop this competition of suffering. We are very good at that. We are even collecting the whole world to be pro this or pro that. I was speaking to the Hosue of Lords. Pro Israel and Pro Palestinina, two types of Lords. And I said, cannot you be pro-solution?
"What are you expecting one of us is going to disappear from this land?
"So this is my voice. To do all of that this is nice, I have three missions now in life, first my book Painful Hope. To have hope in this land is such a painful issue. Second, I landed in the middle of six settlements in a land of my familyl and I start building a Palestinian non violent centre where settlers are coming to have debates. I said c'mon we don't speak to settlers. That's the nice left-wing sentiment in Tel Aviv cafes. I say who is going to engage these people, more than600,000 people, you cannot just cut them and that's it. They are not Gandhis, for sure.
Dialogue is the secure place forr argument, not for agreement but if we don't dialogue with the people we disagree iwth how can we have any solutions. I don't want to convince the convinced. The convinced are nice but we want to activate the dream. I am the slave of my dream, a dream where both sides will reach a conclusion that whatever the price of peace will be is much cheaper than the price of war. We have to accept that, that this is not a rosy road that you go and everything is amazing.
My life has become more hard and complicated.
The third thing is change. We are creating a Palestinisn nonviolent national movement to build an identity for ourselves because non violence is the art of being a human being. It's the celebration of my existence. The one who murdered my brother this way he wanted to bury my humanity in the same grave. But I say no, I'm not a victim anymore.
Not because I don't have pain.
Not because I can erase all the past and the catastrophe and the disasters in my life but because I belong and I know how to serve this belonging. I am the truth. If Jewish people ahve a truth here. We also have a truth here. Peace is a place where two truths can fit together in one place.
Gandhi said it once: First they ignore you, second they tease you, third they attack you, fourth, you win. We gonna win.