We often think of our enemies in third person rather than second; i.e. “he” rather than “you.” In the “War on Terror” we often think of “them”. Nonetheless, these days we consider talking to Iran and Syria, as the Iraq Study Group has recommended. If this is the case, then we ought to also talk to terrorists as well. We ought to ask what are “you” (not “them”) trying to say?
Perhaps the answer may be, you are trying to say you are angry. You are so angry you are willing to destroy yourselves and others in the process. You are angry at Israel and America and the West because you feel that you have been wronged. Israel has denied Palestinian rights, occupied the West Bank and Gaza and continues to do so. This is why you are angry. America has supported Israel and so deserves punishment. America invaded Iraq and Afghanistan. This is why you are angry.
Are you saying that because of this you want the Middle East to be in turmoil, you want to kill others because of their cooperation with Americans or Israelis? Is killing going to make things better?
We must listen to you, not about you, and be willing to speak to you, not at you. Nonetheless, at the same time you must use words not weapons to speak.
+Gregory J. Mansour
(Reprinted with permission.)