Suffer the Children

The Psychology of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Palestinian children play on a mini ferris wheel along a street in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip, July 29, 2014. Finbarr O'Reilly / Courtesy Reuters

It might seem like the unfolding drama in Iraq and Syria had shoved the simmering Israeli-Palestinian conflict aside. It hasn’t. In the last few days Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exchanged verbal blows in the United Nations General Assembly. Each presented his own narrative of this summer’s war in Gaza, the latest round in the century-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Abbas accused Israel of launching “a war of genocide,” while Netanyahu said that the Hamas had committed “war crimes” for which Abbas was indirectly responsible thanks to his power-sharing arrangement with Hamas. Even U.S. President Barack Obama dedicated some of his September 24 speech at the assembly to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In fact, although the public zeroed in on his statements about the war in Iraq, Obama mentioned the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) only six times, compared to the nine times

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