I would like to talk to you about what has been happening for almost a month in the Middle East but also here near us.
We receive news, images and proclamations from Israel and Palestine and we find ourselves facing a situation that is becoming increasingly complex. And it becomes more and more violent. The world seems split into two different positions more than at any time I can remember. If we observe the alliances and surprising positions that unite countries that are in conflict on other fronts, the situation appears increasingly confused. It all boils down to “if you stay with him who is my enemy, you become my enemy too. But if you who were my enemy are now with my friend, what will you become?"
I listen to a Palestinian who is looking for his son under the rubble and I take his side. I would arm myself and fight for him. I listen to an Israeli who saw the person he loved taken away from him before his eyes and I'm on his side. I would arm myself and fight for him. I see the Hamas fighters who are scary just to look at them. And I would like to fight against them. I see the Israeli Chiefs of Staff and honestly they scare me too. And I would like to fight against them too.
I must be weak, foolish and naive if I can't figure anything out. I must have a sensitivity defect if I can't at least "just barely" stay on one side. I must be unintelligent if I don't understand who is right and who is wrong.
I feel like I'm in a bind. And I feel like I'm out of touch if I don't take a stand.
There is no escape.
I'm cornered and I have to say who is more right and who is less wrong.
It reminds me of something…
A relationship in which we feel satisfied only if we have destroyed, exploited or ruined the other cannot be valid. It's just violent and poor. Can I use a psychopathological term? It's a sadomasochistic relationship that can only end badly.
It reminds me of something... what happens in couple relationships when the couple ends and instead of a disputed territory, there is a child cornered with a choice that is not only painful but truly impossible: do you love mom or dad more? One of the two must win, the other must disappear. Maybe not physically (although sometimes, too often it happens) but in affections and thoughts it must no longer exist.
Here I feel like that child who is asked an impossible question: answering will make him feel bad in any case, he will lose something in any case.
A film from when I was a child came to mind these days. A computer equipped with artificial intelligence and capable of simulating any type of game is used by the military to simulate war strategies. A young boy manages to sneak into the system and starts "playing" a war game, unaware that the computer could take his moves seriously and unleash real global destruction. Here is the thin plot of this old film. In the end the artificial intelligence, after having simulated all the possible moves of this war game, as if they were the moves of a game of chess, declares: "It's a strange game. The only winning move is not to play."
Only today do I think I finally understood the ending of this film.
Not out of naivety, not out of ignorance towards everyone's reasons, not out of lack of compassion for the pain of others, but now I know that the only possible, humane and winning position in a war is to refuse the war.