Some challenging and refreshing thoughts have been given by Dzof Azmi in the StarMag, Sunday 18th January 2009.
Having dismissed requests for a boycott, Dzof Azmi writes: “So my suggestion is this: Let us focus on the correct aim. Whatever our religious and cultural differences, peace is always preferable over war. Not only must we metaphorically shake hands and hug our cultural antitheses but we must also be involved in each other’s interests. A downfall for one hurts the other as well.
It sounds like I am saying let’s invest money in Israeli companies, and let them invest money in ours, then, why not? Inter-faith marriages may be rare in actual fact but in spirit it is no bad thing.
On the other hand, we must be willing to condemn anybody who steps in the way of our goal. We should expect Jews worldwide to condemn Israeli use of phosphorous bombs, and pro-Palestinian must similarly be upset at cross-border rocket attacks by Hamas.
We must be willing to attack ourselves in a louder voice than we attack each other. Peace cannot be a one-sided thing where we proudly criticise the Goliath while continue to turn a blind eye to catapults that continually pester him (please pardon the biblical irony).
I feel that a more effective route than a boycott is to seek like-minded people from the other side who also agree that we should seek peace above all else. Don’t go to a masjid to hear and anti-Israel ceramah; go to a synagogue to find Jews who condemn the war. Make friends with them, take the first step towards a common goal.
The problems in the Middle East are beyond simplistic solutions, but the start will be difficult if we don’t even want the same things to begin with.”