All the programs that I've been to were about me talking about my pain, I didn't know and wasn't willing to hear that the other side was also in pain. I didn't want to listen to that, I didn't want to understand or imagine that. At first I felt like I was being forced to listen to them [the Israeli participants], I didn't want to listen. For example, the first time they said they wanted to talk about the bombings that happen in Israel, I said I didn't want to listen and nothing could make me. I only wanted to be there [in the program] just to show the world who I was. But I had to listen for the first time and eventually I came to realize that it's not fair for me to keep talking and not listen to them. The first time I really felt that I was forced to listen, it really was a problem because I didn't want to listen. They insisted that they wanted to talk about their pain and what was hurting them. At last I gave in, not because I wanted to listen but because I became curious. If they wanted to talk, so be it, I didn't have to understand or feel their pain. When they started talking, I realized that they were saying the same things I say only from a different perspective. The way they talked was different; they were saying the same things I would say. For example they say they are afraid of getting on a bus, I say that I am afraid of walking in the streets of Jenin, or of being in a car behind the car of wanted people,
or being near it... The names have changed but the idea is the same. They would talk about the children that died, I immediately would tell them about Mohammed Al Durra,
and a list of names of children that were killed. When they started talking about their children, I felt that the names had changed but the idea was the same: that both nations are in pain. As I said before, I let them talk because they wanted to get it off their chest, but I didn't care—they could say whatever they wanted—and then I started to understand.We meet eighteen- and nineteen-year-olds, the age at which they [Israelis] go to the army, so we try to make them understand. I know that one or two [people] cannot change their government, but at least when they go to the army, if they go to the army, they will treat the Palestinians better than [Israeli soldiers] are treating us now. They will know that there are good Palestinians. There are some Israeli participants who refused to go to the army after camp because they realized that Palestinians are not all the same. I also realized the same thing: that they [Israelis] are not all the same. I had only seen Israelis in their army uniforms. The first time I saw them, I was expecting to see them in their uniforms. Maybe it doesn't sound realistic, but that's what I was expecting. I didn't expect them to be wearing Jeans and a T-shirt like myself.