Program Particulars: Two Narratives, Pt. 2

Program Particulars

*Times indicated refer to Web version of audio

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(1:45) Music Element

"The Multiples of One" from Awakening, performed by Joseph Curiale


» Enlarge the image David Ben-Gurion, who was to become the first Israeli prime minister, reads the Declaration of Independence at a museum in Tel Aviv during the ceremony founding the state of Israel on May 14, 1948. Ben-Gurion stands under a portrait of Theodor Herzl, the founder of political Zionism, while surrounded by members of the National Jewish Council. (Photo: Zoltan Kluger/GPO)

David Ben-Gurion, who was to become the first Israeli prime minister, reads the Declaration of Independence at a museum in Tel Aviv during the ceremony founding the state of Israel on May 14, 1948. Ben-Gurion stands under a portrait of Theodor Herzl, the founder of political Zionism, while surrounded by members of the National Jewish Council. (Photo: Zoltan Kluger/GPO)

(01:58) Founding of State of Israel

The modern Zionist movement was founded in 1896 with the publication of The Jewish State by an Austrian Jew, Theodore Herzl. In the face of rising anti-Semitism throughout Europe, Herzl became a diplomat for the creation of a secular, cosmopolitan Jewish homeland free of anti-Semitism. Great Britain was the first major power to support the creation of this state in the area then known as Palestine, the spiritual homeland of ancient Israel. Foreign Secretary Lord Arthur James Balfour announced the new policy in a 1917 letter which became known as The Balfour Declaration:

Foreign Office November 2nd, 1917 Dear Lord Rothschild, I have much pleasure in conveying to you, on behalf of His Majesty's Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Cabinet.

"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country."

I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation. Yours sincerely, Arthur James Balfour

On November 29, 1947, the United Nations approved a plan that partitioned Palestine (which was under British control) and established the independent state of Israel. The UN plan also created an Arab state controlled by Egypt and Transjordan and designated that greater Jerusalem would fall under international control. Some Jewish and Arab groups rejected the plan: Jewish leaders wanted more territorial continuity and the Arab leaders argued that the amount and quality of the land was disproportionately given to the Jews.

Shortly thereafter, intermittent fighting broke out between various Jewish and Arabic factions until May 14, 1948, when the British relinquished their authority. That same day, the provisional government declared the independent state of Israel. The United States, under President Truman, immediately recognized the de facto government of the new Jewish state. The Soviet Union and other countries followed several days later.

» Enlarge the image (l to r) Lebanese defense minister Emir Megrid Arslan, Syrian prime minister Djamil Rey Mardam, an unidentified man, King Abdullah of Transjordan (later Jordan), and Lebanese prime minister Riad Bey Es Solh meet in Amman, Jordan four days before the beginning of the first Arab-Israeli War. As independence of the state of Israel was declared, Arab forces from Egypt, Syria, Transjordan, Lebanon, and Iraq invaded Israel. King Abdullah would be assassinated by a Palestinian refugee in Amman three years later. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

(l to r) Lebanese defense minister Emir Megrid Arslan, Syrian prime minister Djamil Rey Mardam, an unidentified man, King Abdullah of Transjordan (later Jordan), and Lebanese prime minister Riad Bey Es Solh meet in Amman, Jordan four days before the beginning of the first Arab-Israeli War. As independence of the state of Israel was declared, Arab forces from Egypt, Syria, Transjordan, Lebanon, and Iraq invaded Israel. King Abdullah would be assassinated by a Palestinian refugee in Amman three years later. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

(02:20) 1948: The Nakba

The 1948 Arab-Israeli War was fought and interrupted briefly by several truces until Israel signed a series of cease-fire agreements in 1949 with Egypt, Lebanon, Transjordan, and Syria. As a result, Israel occupied 50 percent more land than the original partition proposed under the UN plan. These borders are known as the "Green Line."

Israelis mark 1948 as the year of independence, but Arabs refer to the partitioning of Palestine and removal of Palestinians from their land as Al-Nakba, or "the catastrophe." The estimated number of refugees varies depending on the source. Israeli figures often only count those refugees displaced as a direct result of the fighting, whereas Palestinian estimates include all those who were economically devastated by the war. In 1949, an Israeli commission estimated that 530,000 Palestinians were displaced; several months later, a UN commission increased that number to 770,000 refugees who fled or were expelled from their homes. What we know now as the Palestinian territories came under the control of Jordanian, Egyptian, and eventually Israeli forces. In Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict, 1881–2001, author Benny Morris writes:

In the summer of 1948, refugees—propelled by poverty, homesickness, or the desire for revenge—began to infiltrate in large numbers into Israel. Many West Bank farmers, from about eighty villages that had fields on the Israeli side of the new border, also regularly crossed over to work "their lands," even though these were now increasingly cultivated by Jewish settlers. Another kind of border problem arose from the creation of the DMZs on the Israeli side of the borders with Egypt and Syria, where no country was officially sovereign. The 1950s saw frequent clashes over control of the zones. It was mainly the plight of the Palestinian refugees that fueled Arab animosity toward Israel. Their massive presence served as testimony to the Arab world's humiliation, as proof of the injustice that had befallen the Palestinian people, and as a spur to anti-Israel action. Of the 700,000 or so refugees, about half were in Jordan, most of them in the West Bank. Another 200,000 were in the Gaza Strip; about 100,000 in Lebanon; and more than 60,000 in Syria. About half of all the refugees settled in existing towns and villages; the other half, in camps.

» Enlarge the image President Bill Clinton stands between PLO leader Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzahk Rabin as they shake hands at the White House on September 13, 1993. Rabin and Arafat shook hands for the first time after Israel and the PLO signed a historic agreement on Palestinian autonomy in the occupied territories. (Photo: J. David Ake/AFP/Getty Images)

President Bill Clinton stands between PLO leader Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzahk Rabin as they shake hands at the White House on September 13, 1993. Rabin and Arafat shook hands for the first time after Israel and the PLO signed a historic agreement on Palestinian autonomy in the occupied territories. (Photo: J. David Ake/AFP/Getty Images)

(02:43) The Oslo Peace Process

After many years of failed attempts at Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, a series of secret negotiations were orchestrated under the guise of an academic exercise in Oslo, Norway, which began in January 1993. In order to proceed toward mutual discussions, negotiators from both sides agreed to ignore long-standing grievances and focus on areas where agreement was a distinct possibility. The Norwegian organizers emphasized the social aspects of personal relationships between the two sides and stressed an informal arrangement for the meetings.

In August 1993, the chief Palestinian negotiator, Abu Ala, and his Israeli counterpart, Uri Savir, initialed the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements, commonly referred to as the Oslo Peace Accord, in a private ceremony. The Accord provided a framework for establishing peace between Israelis and the Palestinians by creating a timetable for general outcomes to be met. A month later, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Chairman Yasser Arafat signed the formal agreement and shook hands on the White House lawn.

Two important tenets of the Accord were the right of recognition and troop withdrawal. Israel recognized the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) as the official representative of the Palestinian people and the PLO recognized the right of the state of Israel to exist. Israeli forces would withdraw from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, and a Palestinian government would be transitionally installed within five years. Issues such as the status of Jerusalem, water, transportation, and Jewish settlers in occupied territory intentionally remained ambiguous but were acknowledged as areas requiring cooperation. The failure of the process has left bitterness and uncertainty on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide.

(03:30) Palestinians in Israel

After the creation of the state of Israel, a number of Arabs — mostly Palestinian — remained within the Israeli borders. As of 2004, the total population was approximately 1.4 million people (PDF), roughly 20 percent of Israel's total population. As the Arab population increases, the role of Palestinian citizens of Israel becomes increasingly complex and continues to evolve.

» Enlarge the image Two Druze dignitaries, one from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and the other from inside Syria, embrace as they meet at the Quneitra checkpoint. Some 17,000 Druze Syrians live in the occupied part of the Golan, which was annexed in 1981 by Israel, but they retain their Syrian nationality. (Photo: Louai Beshara/AFP/Getty Images)

Two Druze dignitaries, one from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and the other from inside Syria, embrace as they meet at the Quneitra checkpoint. Some 17,000 Druze Syrians live in the occupied part of the Golan, which was annexed in 1981 by Israel, but they retain their Syrian nationality. (Photo: Louai Beshara/AFP/Getty Images)

(03:48) The Druze


The Druze community is a small religious sect located in Syria, Lebanon, and Israel. Ranging somewhere between 250,000 to one million adherents, they refer to themselves as muwahhidun, or "monotheists." The Druze keep secret their doctrines and traditions from outsiders as well as many of their own. They are a tightly knit group of people who do not allow conversion from or to their religion, and forbid intermarriage.

The Druze community is divided into two groups: the initiates, called 'uqqal ("knowers" or "intelligent") and the uninitiated lay majority, or juhhal ("ignorant"). The 'uqqal participate in religious services and are able to learn the secret teachings of the hikmah, the Druze religious doctrine. Druze religious beliefs originated out of a version of Islamic teachings, but are considered an amalgam of many elements, including teachings from Judaism, Christianity, Gnosticism, and other faiths and cultures.

Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, the sixth caliph (996-1021) of the Fatimid dynasty of Egypt, organized the eclectic system of beliefs into doctrine and is revered by the Druze. They believe that al-Hakim didn't die, but disappeared and will return again to bring about a golden age.

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(04:00) Music Element

"Arrozana (Through the Window)" from Lost Songs of Palestine, performed by Edward Hines Music

From the liner notes of the Lost Songs of Palestine:

"Arrozana" is about the pain of lost love. Like a breeze through the window, love is seen as a brief, passing experience. "Arrozana, Arrozana, koollil hawa feeha, weish 'imlat ir-rozana, Allah yijazeeha." (Through the window, through the window, the breeze flows; why has this window imposed on me? May Allah punish it for taking my love away.) The opening of this work features two taqasim (improvisations) in the Arabic Rast maqam (mode or scale): the first on the nay (end-blown flute) and the second, a vocal improvisation known as a mawwal. The rhythm is a juxtaposition of 6-meter-time in the percussion against 4-meter-time in the melody.

» Enlarge the image Muslim pilgrims attend Friday prayer on in the city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia during the Hajj pilgrimage. (Photo: Muhannad Fala'ah/Getty Images)

Muslim pilgrims attend Friday prayer on in the city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia during the Hajj pilgrimage. (Photo: Muhannad Fala'ah/Getty Images)

(04:24) Grandfather's Pilgrimage to Mecca

The Hajj is the annual pilgrimage to Mecca — the most holy place for Muslims — that all Muslims, who are physically able to, should make at least once in their lifetime. The procession takes place over several days and includes a public performance of the same rites and rituals en masse. Today, over two million pilgrims make the journey per year.

(06:30) Islamic Law and Pets

In most cases, sharia forbids owning a dog as pet, unless for purposes of hunting or guarding their farm animals. In modern times, dogs are permissible for use as guides for the blind and disabled.

(06:54) Arab-Jewish Dialogue

There are many organizations promoting dialogue among Palestinians and Israelis. One is Open House, an organization seeking to improve social services for Arab citizens in the Israeli town of Ramle and to provide a place for encountering and cooperation between Jewish and Arab citizens. Ramle is home to many new Jewish immigrants from Africa and the former Soviet Union, and, like the whole of Israel, its population is approximately 20 percent Arab, and mostly Palestinian. An affiliate organization, Friends of Open House, has formally organized chapters in Cincinnati, Ohio and Boston, Massachusetts. Read the story of Dalia Landau and the origins of Open House and listen to a report about the initiative by by NPR's Linda Gradstein.

Another group seeking to bring together Israelis and Palestinians is Just Vision. A compelling documentary, Encounter Point, chronicles the efforts of individuals on both sides of the barrier and the paths they take to find peace.

» Enlarge the image A Palestinian man waves a national flag on top of the roof of room built by foreign, Palestinian, and Israeli peace activists on the land that will be taken by the construction of Israel's separation barrier in the West Bank village of Bilin. (Photo: Abbas Momani/AFP/Getty Images)

A Palestinian man waves a national flag on top of the roof of room built by foreign, Palestinian, and Israeli peace activists on the land that will be taken by the construction of Israel's separation barrier in the West Bank village of Bilin. (Photo: Abbas Momani/AFP/Getty Images)

(07:05) Palestinian Intifadas

The term "intifada" literally means "shaking off" in Arabic — as Mohammed Abu-Nimer says "shaking something off your shoulder." The first Palestinian Intifada began in 1987. It brought men, women, and children onto the streets in the Palestinian territories in protest against the Israeli military presence in their midst. Their protests generally took the form of civil disobedience — strikes, boycotts, graffiti, and barricades. But stone-throwing demonstrations against heavily armed Israeli troops captured international attention. Israeli forces responded violently against demonstrators, and Palestinian civilians died. This spiral of events led many Israelis to reexamine their attitudes and government policies towards Palestinians. It strongly contributed to the momentum that led to the Oslo peace process from 1993 to 2000.

By contrast, the Second Intifada from 2000 to 2005 targeted civilians inside Israel with suicide bombs. The Islamist movement Hamas, which won a government majority in recent Palestinian elections, was a key architect of that campaign. This Intifada helped bring the already beleaguered Oslo peace process to a bitter end.

(08:33) Israeli Checkpoints and Separation Barrier

After years of discussion, the Israeli government decided to erect a separation barrier in June 2002, after an unprecedented number of suicide bombings launched from the West Bank in the spring and early summer of that year. Currently, 97 percent of the barrier is chain link fence and razor wire, with prefabricated concrete walls measuring up to 25 feet high placed at strategic points within cities that include Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Palestinians object to the barrier for many reasons. For some, it inhibits daily passage from home to work and schools. Others condemn the wall being built on Palestinian land east of the pre-1967 Green Line border. President Bush has called the route of the barrier "a problem" and urged Israel to change it because the barrier lies several hundred yards within the West Bank land. Many Palestinians view it as a land grab by the Israelis. PBS' Online NewsHour provides a clean, interactive map of the controversial wall between the West Bank and Israel.

Ted Conover's report in the March 2006 issue of The Atlantic Monthly gives an up close and personal view of Israeli checkpoints. Conover shows the dull and stressful daily life of Israeli guards and the dehumanizing and frustrating experiences of Palestinians trying to cross.

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(09:13) Music Element

"Saraab" from Blue Flame, performed by Simon Shaheen and Qantara


(10:25) Hamas and Elections

Hamas, literally meaning "zeal" or "courage" in Arabic, is an acronym for the Islamic Resistance Movement. The militant Palestinian organization was founded in 1987. Hamas opposes the existence of the state of Israel and favors the creation of the Islamic state of Palestine. Hamas attacked Israeli citizens, soldiers, and settlers from the late 1980s until 2005 and was active in both the first and second intifadas. In January 2006, Hamas won a clear majority of seats in the Palestinian parliamentary elections — unseating Fatah's Mahmoud Abbas and the party of Yasser Arafat after 40 years of rule.

» Enlarge the image Israeli right-wing opposition leader Ariel Sharon is flanked by security guards as he visits the Al-Aqsa mosque compound — Islam's third holiest shrine — in Jerusalem's Old City on September 28, 2000. (Photo: Awad Awad/AFP/Getty Images)

Israeli right-wing opposition leader Ariel Sharon is flanked by security guards as he visits the Al-Aqsa mosque compound — Islam's third holiest shrine — in Jerusalem's Old City on September 28, 2000. (Photo: Awad Awad/AFP/Getty Images)

(10:35) Sharon's Visit to Al-Aqsa Mosque

On September 28, 2000, Ariel Sharon, who was a candidate running under the banner of the right-wing party Likud, visited the Jerusalem holy site of the Temple Mount, as it is known in Judaism, or Haram al-Sharif, in Islam. Accompanied by hundreds of armed guards, Sharon said his visit was meant as a peaceful gesture. And, he maintained, Israelis didn't need special permission of the Palestinian Authority to visit a site "under full Israeli sovereignty." Many Palestinians, including Yasser Arafat, viewed his visit as an act of provocation in which he thumbed his nose at the Palestinians and identify it as fueling the Second Intifada.

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(14:53) Music Element

"Fogel Nakhal" from Under the Olive Tree, performed by Yuval Ron Ensemble


(15:43) Hamas Declared Commitment to the Destruction of Israel

The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement is the foundational charter of Hamas that was signed on August 18, 1988. The document cites several texts, inciting Muslims to fight against the state of Israel and the Jewish people: "Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it" (The Martyr, Imam Hassan al-Banna, of blessed memory)." "Moreover, if the links have been distant from each other and if obstacles, placed by those who are the lackeys of Zionism in the way of the fighters obstructed the continuation of the struggle, the Islamic Resistance Movement aspires to the realization of Allah's promise, no matter how long that should take. The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said: "The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews." (related by al-Bukhari and Moslem)."

In a February 26, 2006 interview with the Washington Post's Lally Weymouth, Hamas' newly appointed prime minister, Ismail Haniyeh, bluntly answered a series of pointed questions about the right of Israel to exist in the Middle East.

(15:49) Hamas' Stance on Israel

Al Fatah — a reverse acronym for Harekat at-Tahrir al-Wataniyyeh al-Falastiniyyeh, the Movement for the National Liberation of Palestine — was founded in the early 1960s by Yasser Arafat and others. Al Fatah initially opposed the founding of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), but eventually joined and assumed control of the PLO in 1969. The BBC reports that Al Fatah carried out 2,432 guerrilla attacks on Israel in that year alone. In 1993, Arafat signed the Declaration of Principles — better known as the Oslo Accords — renouncing terrorism and recognizing the right of Israel to exist. Guerrilla attacks continued, and critics point to known members of Al Fatah leading militant brigades against Israel and the failure of Al Fatah to amend its constitution, which calls for the "complete liberation of Palestine, and eradication of Zionist economic, political, military and cultural existence."

In January 2006, the fundamentalist Islamic movement, Hamas, won a majority of seats on the legislative council and unseated Fatah as the ruling party of Palestine. Many pundits attribute Hamas' victory to the corruption within the Fatah party and its failure to help the Palestinian people with their basic social needs.

» Enlarge the image Palestinian youths run from a barrage of tear gas fired by Israeli soldiers on November 3, 2000 during a clash after Friday prayers in the West Bank town of Ramallah. (Photo: Brian Hendler/Newsmakers)

Palestinian youths run from a barrage of tear gas fired by Israeli soldiers on November 3, 2000 during a clash after Friday prayers in the West Bank town of Ramallah. (Photo: Brian Hendler/Newsmakers)

(16:24) Sharon's Evacuation from Palestinian Territories

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon ordered the military to evacuate thousands of Israeli settlers from the Gaza Strip and hundreds more from select West Bank areas in August 2005. It's the first time Israel has removed settlements from occupied territory since its decision to return the Sinai peninsula to Egypt in 1982. The removal was strongly resisted by the settlers as well as by certain members of the Israeli military.

(19:12) Former Conversation with Halevi

In a On Being program exploring the appeal of fundamentalism in Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, Krista spoke with Halevi about how he experienced it as a teenager from the inside. Also, listen to an exclusive conversation in which Halevi gives profoundly original insight into the religious dimension of life and war in the Holy Land.

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(22:48) Music Element

"Fardah (Instrumental)" from Zaghareed, performed by El-Funoun


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(26:00) Music Element

"Annun Sira" from Lily of the Nile, performed by Hamza El Din


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(33:23) Music Element

"Balade" from Sufi Music of Turkey, performed by Kudsi Erguner


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(35:23) Music Element

"Ya Hweydalak" from Lost Songs of Palestine, performed by Edward Hines Music

From the liner notes of the Lost Songs of Palestine:

Another example work which is well-known throughout the Middle East, Ya Hweydalak is sung in the ancient Saba maqam. The work opens with taqsim on the oud. The simple, repeated Saba melody of Ya Hweydalak — spiritual and dark with feeling — perfectly matches the text of woeful love. "Ya hweydalak, ya hweydalak, ya hweydal hweydali, timshee dala' dala wimhanjilhanjali." (You prance a playful walk, with fondness you court, but from girls to me there is just woe.)

(36:11) The Peace Research Institute in the Middle East (PRIME)

Along with his Israeli colleague Dan Bar-On, Adwan co-directs the organization PRIME, the Peace Research Institute in the Middle East. The organization focuses on changing negative attitudes about Palestinians and Israelis. Part of this effort entails developing a textbook for 9th- and 10th-grade students, Learning Each Other's Historical Narrative: Palestinians and Israelis.

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(39:25) Music Element

"Mouwashshah Lamma Bada Yatathanna" from Lost Songs of Palestine, performed by Edward Hines Music

From the liner notes of the Lost Songs of Palestine:

This ancient and beautiful song is widely known throughout the Arab, Turkish, and Persian worlds. It is played in the 10/8 classical sama'i rhythm. The familiar chorus is simply the words "Aman, Aman, Aman." (Woe, woe, woe.)

» Enlarge the image An Israeli soldier points his gun at a Palestinian youth asked to strip down as he stands at a military checkpoint along the controversial 'separation barrier' built by Israel at the entrance of the holy town of Bethlehem. Palestinian towns and cities in the West Bank have similar Israeli checkpoints controlling the movement of the Palestinian citizens in and out of their towns and cities. (Photo: Musa Al-Shaer/AFP/Getty Images)

An Israeli soldier points his gun at a Palestinian youth asked to strip down as he stands at a military checkpoint along the controversial 'separation barrier' built by Israel at the entrance of the holy town of Bethlehem. Palestinian towns and cities in the West Bank have similar Israeli checkpoints controlling the movement of the Palestinian citizens in and out of their towns and cities. (Photo: Musa Al-Shaer/AFP/Getty Images)

(39:58) Meeting at Checkpoints

For a Palestinian point of view on the Israeli separation barrier, check out our audio gallery, "Checkpoints + Barriers." You can listen to Sami Adwan's thoughts on living in a walled-off land accompanied by images of the Palestinian and Israeli people who encounter it in their daily lives.

(41:31) Israeli Reporter in Gaza

Adwan cites Yoram Binur's book, My Enemy, My Self.

(44:23) Victims of the Holocaust

To mark Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance, Krista spoke with Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel — a survivor of the Holocaust in which he lost most of his family — for the On Being program, "The Tragedy of the Believer." A revered moral figure and a seminal chronicler of that event and its meaning, Wiesel reflected on an encounter with a German student:

Tippett: You met with a group of young Germans, and I have never forgotten what you said when you came out. I was there with another New York Times correspondent. And you said, "I had never before considered that it could be as painful to be the children of those who ran the camps as to be the child of those who died in them." Mr. Wiesel: Because I have students from Germany, and you cannot imagine the affection I have for them, the empathy I have for them. I want to help them. They need help. One of them said to me, even in Berlin then, said, "You know, I just discovered a few weeks ago that" — he discovered that his father was an SS officer. He said, "What should I do?" You know what Hitler has done. He destroyed so many lives that had not been born yet. His people. Tippett: How did you respond to that student? Mr. Wiesel: Well, as you can imagine, I took him aside and we spoke and we spoke and we spoke, and I simply said, "Look, he's your father. Talk first. First, let him talk to you, and you talk to him, and then you decide what to do. I understand you, absolutely. I understand you."

» Enlarge the image Palestinians pray in front of the Israeli separation barrier at Kalandia checkpoint near the entrance of the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Photo: Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images)

Palestinians pray in front of the Israeli separation barrier at Kalandia checkpoint near the entrance of the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Photo: Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images)

(45:24) Article in The Atlantic Monthly

Krista cites Ted Conover's article, "The Checkpoint" in the March 2006 issue of The Atlantic Monthly.

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(49:12) Music Element

"Arrozana" from Lost Songs of Palestine, performed by Edward Hines Music

From the liner notes of the Lost Songs of Palestine:

"Arrozana" is about the pain of lost love. Like a breeze through the window, love is seen as a brief, passing experience. "Arrozana, Arrozana, koollil hawa feeha, weish 'imlat ir-rozana, Allah yijazeeha." (Through the window, through the window, the breeze flows; why has this window imposed on me? May Allah punish it for taking my love away.) The opening of this work features two taqasim (improvisations) in the Arabic Rast maqam (mode or scale): the first on the nay (end-blown flute) and the second, a vocal improvisation known as a mawwal. The rhythm is a juxtaposition of 6-meter-time in the percussion against 4-meter-time in the melody.

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(50:37) Music Element

"Al-Qantara" from Blue Flame, performed by Simon Shaheen and Qantara


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is associate professor at the American University School of International Service in Washington, DC and executive director of the Salaam Institute for Peace & Justice.

is an associate professor in the faculty of Education at Bethlehem University.