Haaretz reports on a country split in two:
“One half is no longer willing to take part in the settlers’ march of folly, which is leading to a third destruction to follow the first two destructions of the Temple. These people are no longer willing to sacrifice their lives for the sake of real estate. They’re the same people who seek a normal life of peace alongside their Arab neighbors, who also deserve a state of their own”.
Yesterday, Sigal Samuel reported in the Jewish Daily Forward that Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat wrote on Facebook about his visit to the family home of murdered Israeli-American teenager Naftali Fraenkel, and also his phone conversation with Hussein Abu Khdeir, to express pain at the “barbaric” murder of his son, Mohammed.
Abu Khdeir then agreed to speak to Yishai Fraenkel, the uncle of Naftali Fraenkel, who recently told the press:
“The life of an Arab is equally precious to that of a Jew. Blood is blood, and murder is murder, whether that murder is Jewish or Arab.”
In a separate visit organized by Rabbi Rafi Ostroff, chair of the religious council of Gush Etzion, Palestinians from the Hebron area came to the door of the Fraenkel family, looking to comfort the bereaved.
One said, “Things will only get better when we learn to cope with each other’s pain and stop getting angry at each other. Our task is to give strength to the family and also to take a step toward my nation’s liberation. We believe that the way to our liberation is through the hearts of Jews . . . They received us very, very nicely. The mother [Rachel Fraenkel] was incredible.”
The Palestinian visitors mentioned an initiative spearheaded by Jews and Muslims to transform July 15, the Jewish fast day known as 17 Tammuz, into a joint fast day for people of both religions who wish to express their desire to end violence in the region.
On the same day, the Times of Israel appears to represent the other half, painting a very different picture.