It saddens me — again — to see the ongoing violence in the Middle East. It appears intractable, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
I do not support Israeli violence against Palestinian civilians. Nor can I support Palestinian violence against Israeli civilians. Violence does not solve interpersonal conflicts; it just perpetuates them. Past abuses on either side cannot be a rationale for committing more violence.
There is a roadmap that can be employed: non-violent resistance as exhibited by Mahatma Gandhi in India when he worked to obtain independence from the United Kingdom, and Martin Luther King when he fought racism in our country. Gandhi has been credited with saying “An eye for an eye will leave the whole world blind.”
It’s not easy. Both paid the ultimate price for their belief in bringing about non-violent change — their deaths. Violence has not worked in the Middle East, and if you look at history, it will fail. We should not keep ourselves hostage to revenge. Who will be the next non-violent leader in the Middle East?
Dr. Paul Manganiello TDI’16 is an obstetrics and gynecology professor emeritus at the Geisel School of Medicine. Letters to the Editor represent the views of their author(s), which are not necessarily those of The Dartmouth.