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Israel & The Arabs : The Post-Settlement Challenge.

I believe that the two-state solution is coming in the near horizon, regardless of the approval or disapproval of some.

The leading players in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict presently lean towards a two-state solution, i.e. a Palestinian state neighbouring the State of Israel. I believe that during the current decade, the two-state solution will become a living reality on the map of the Middle-East. But does this mean the end of the bitter conflict which is possibly one of the longest and darkest conflicts in the history of humanity? My definite answer in one word is: no.

So long as all the parties (with no exception) do not face the ugly truth represented in the hate culture reigning between the two sides, the only thing that will happen is that the conflict will be transformed into other new shapes which could be bad to the utmost. The core of the interest of all parties should be education; for education on all sides of the conflict must be re-established. Education in the region must be based on glorifying the value of human life, enhancing the splendour of pluralism in all its forms in human life, and reinforcing the greatness of the value of accepting and respecting the other (the racial other, the religious other, the doctrinal other, the cultural other… etc.) It is also imperative that the educational curricula in all the societies of the region enhance the virtues and the humanness of common coexistence, of belief in the universality of knowledge and science, and of raising the value of women not only as being half of the society in number but much more than that, as being mothers to the other half. The meaning of humanity in all its dimensions must be rooted in the educational curricula, and these curricula must counter all fanaticism and factionalism. The educational curricula will also have to arrange for the critical mind to play an important role, and to widely broaden the objective mind (as opposed to the mentality of tribal personalism). The educational curricula must also, in the future (i.e. after the political settlements), spread the culture of dialogue and dismiss the culture of violence, and raise the status of group work amongst people, in order to achieve a better future for humanity.

The parties of the Arab-Israeli conflict may not all have equal needs for this (and in fact they don’t); however, the beginning of sound cure will be in all the parties admitting to the advantage of this complete and comprehensive educational reform; for denying the need for this educational, intellectual and cultural revolution will lead to the abolition of the operation of the eradication of the hate culture in the entire region.

I am (in this respect) a believer that humanities and social sciences are equal in importance to applied sciences: for what is the importance of the existence of successful scientists in an environment where the spirit of hate capers!

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