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There are a number of things Israel could do to decrease the rocket attacks on its civilians:
1. Declare it has learned after multiple wars and military operations that assaulting the other side does not work. The cycle of violence always has continued.
2. Acknowledge the terrible bloodshed both peoples have endured and recognize its role in this, regardless of whether the other side is equally forthcoming.
3. Express regret over the loss of thousands of innocent people over many military operations, including countless children, a true abomination.
4. Recognize the impoverishment of its neighbors in Gaza and their urgent economic needs. Acknowledge their feelings of imprisonment due to Israeli control of borders and of many basic necessities of life. Realize that through all of human history, such conditions have bred anger and revolt and always will.
5. Decide that, as a strong and wealthy country, it will seek a humanitarian partnership. It will relinquish its controls. It will help to support the need for food, water, medical care, education and housing.
6. Understand it may take years for the anger on both sides to soften and that there may be more deadly activities before there is normalcy. But this generous alternative must be pursued because the violent approach yields unspeakable tragedies and has consistently failed to achieve a lasting peace.
The mantra that any country has the right to defend itself, spoken repeatedly in the press, is useless if the method chosen is ineffective. Countries facing such repeated and tragic failures must ask themselves: Is there a better way?
First Published November 23, 2012 12:00 am