It is Not Too Late for Reconciliation Between Israel and Palestine, Even in the Darkest Hour

Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 21 (1):29-45 (2024)
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Abstract

The conflict in Gaza and Israel that ignited on October 7, 2023 signals a catastrophic breakdown in the possibility of ethical dialogue in the region. The actions on both sides have revealed a dissolution of ethical restraints, with unimaginably cruel attacks on civilians, murder of children, destruction of health facilities, and denial of basic needs such as water, food, and shelter. There is a need both to understand the nature of the ethical singularity represented by this conflict and what, if any, options are available to allow the reconstruction of communication between the warring parties. This article seeks to address these tasks by analysing the conflict as inherently an ethical one, in the sense that it exposes a rupture in the fabric of communicative relationships that has evolved systematically out of the deep cultural structures from which all protagonists have emerged. Drawing on the work of Levinas, Habermas, Arendt, and others, and referring to the specific circumstances in the region, it examines the ethical sources of the crisis and tries to identify conditions for its resolution. The possibility of reconciliation—that is, of refiguring relationships to open up a space for dialogue to create pathways to heal the ruptures—is examined. The dark legacy of the Holocaust is identified as an abiding cultural vulnerability for both societies. It is concluded, however, that the rich history of partnerships and collaborations between Jews and Palestinians provides a robust infrastructure on the basis of which a sustainable peace might be built, providing a much-needed source of hope.

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References found in this work

War and Self Defense.David Rodin - 2002 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
War and Self Defense.David Rodin - 2002 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
War and self-defense.David Rodin - 2004 - Ethics and International Affairs 18 (1):63–68.

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