Palestine, 23 April, 2024 As the conflict between Israel and Palestine rages on, a sense of despair permeates the air in Ramallah. Amidst the devastation, a poignant quote from Lyndsey Stonebridge’s work on Hannah Arendt resonates: “It is when the experience of powerlessness is at its most acute, when history seems at its most bleak, that the determination to think like a human being, creatively, courageously, and complicatedly matters the most.” However, amidst the ongoing violence, questions arise about the ability of both Israelis and Palestinians to maintain their humanity in the face of relentless conflict.

The resurgence of the Jewish ultra-right in Israel has exacerbated tensions, with settlers and supremacists pushing for further expansion into Palestinian territories. The Gaza Strip and the West Bank are increasingly under siege, with Palestinians facing displacement and loss of land. The prospect of losing Palestine entirely looms large, adding to the collective trauma of a people who have long sought recognition and justice.

The conflict has also exposed the shortcomings of secular liberals in Israel, who have largely rallied behind the military without considering the long-term consequences of their actions. The lack of willingness among Israeli Jews to pursue peace and the demonization of Palestinians only deepen the divide.

Despite the staggering death toll in Gaza and international condemnation, the US continues to support Israel unabatedly. As the war persists, the future seems bleak, with both Palestinians and Israelis grappling with the question of coexistence in a land torn apart by violence and occupation.