Tag Archives: Middle East

When Palestinians and Israelis are nothing but humans

written by Najla

When Palestinian and Israeli are nothing but humans!

When we hear the names Israel or Palestine, the first thing that comes to mind is the conflict these two states are suffering from. One land is being divided into two states where people are discriminated based on the part of land they end up in. If you live in the south, north or east of this land, then you will be an Israeli, while if you live in the west or middle of this land you will be called Palestinian. These Two nations had been fighting for a very long time each claiming that this piece of land is theirs.

Throughout years of endless wars, people from both sides started to realize that their problems will never be solved unless a CHANGE is made, and from this point of view, peace movements of both sides started to arise. Kids for peace organization is one of many organization who followed this vision of living in peace with the other side and as peace seeker I joined them in 2012.

As a Palestinian, I always knew how kind and generous the Palestinians are. I know how much they suffer from the violent actions of the Israelis. I have my own personal stories as I almost got shot twice and suffer through the check points everyday . However, I never got the chance to = hear their side of the story from an Israeli until I met Nitzan.

Nitzan is a 17 years old Israeli girl whose father had survived a bus explosion in Jerusalem several years ago caused  by a Palestinian man who bombed himself in the bus claiming that what he did is a reaction to the Israeli acts against the Palestinians. Nitzan’s story was as sad as the stories of the Palestinians. Thanks god her father survived but there were many victims on that bus who died or suffered from serious injuries.

Despite this tragedy that Nitzan had to go through, she didn’t allow hatred to blind her eyes and heart  so she decided to seek the opposite path. She joined kids for peace to help in creating peace with the Palestinians. And there is where I met this beautiful girl and got to know her more when we traveled together to join UPF project for creating change 2013.

During this experience, Nitzan  And I talked a lot about the situation. We explained each other’s point of view about the current conflict and shared personal stories. We became friends then sisters. Honestly I never thought I will meet an Israeli with great personality and joyful spirit.

Time-traveller!

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Everyone has a story to tell; whether it is about themselves, other people or objects that have had a deep influence in their lives or the surrounding environment.
I interviewed a young man from Austria, Lukas, 28, who also has a unique story. Lukas’ story tells about his dreams and the way he sees his life and the world through his choices and actions.
This young man who is, by all means, full of potential, has smart ideas, observations and desire to see positive change happening in communities and the entire global society in all its standpoints. He can be an example of this uprising generation who is willing and acting hard to make the world better place for everyone.

Lukas grew up in Austria, and as long as he remembers, politics and society issues have always found their ways to his thinking. In fact, later all these interests lead him to leave remarkable footprints in numerous working fields.
After Lukas received his Civil Engineering Certificate, he went to do military service. The training took him a couple of years, but in the meantime he headed to Australia and studied geo-science. After that he went back to Vienna and had academic training for Environmental Engineering and Development Studies.

Lukas’ curiosity and interest in knowing about global issues as well as having a positive influence on them, directed him to have a particular interest in the Middle East. Also for clarity he wanted to get rid of stereotypes and prejudices, and gain a good understanding of the region.

Lukas has been and still is involved in many projects. In the last years he worked for research projects, for instance, on Lebanese society, Syrian society and Syrian-Israeli conflict. He also worked in Palestine and was involved in humanitarian project in Libya. In addition to his interest in the Middle East, Lukas works for Austrian Ministry Of Defense as a conflict analyst, counseling, writing reports and monitoring conflicts.

Currently, Lukas’ focus is on Shabka, a newborn global network with a profound insight to contribute in political development. Shabka’s background is in in-depth analyses of specific key topics, which are critical research, development, peace and conflict research or environment and agriculture. And the aim is to provide students, young academics and journalists a space to publish their scientific papers and analyses.
Lukas and his enthusiastic co-workers are developing Shabka in a very collective sense, and Lukas believes that big achievements and change require collaboration.

Personally i was amazed by the fact that he had done all these 10 years, as it would’ve taken more years from most of the people. One could call him a time-traveller and a person who’s truly committed to what his has been doing.

By Angelina,

Proofreader: Katri

References:

Interview with Lukas
Shabka.org