Death toll to soar in Middle East as leaders shun peace
A LOT more people would inevitably die before the bloodshed in the Middle East was brought to an end, according to University of the Sunshine Coast Chancellor John Dobson.
This would occur despite the desire for peace among the majority of the Israeli and Arab populations,
Father Dobson, who has just returned from his most recent study tour to the region, said total intransigence was at play in the behaviour of both the Israeli and Hamas leadership.
But he said the current wave of Islamic fundamentalism was triggered by George Bush's Coalition of the Willing invasion of Iraq that excited a fight for home land among Arab populations.
There was also hypocrisy in that while Saudi Arabia remained close to the United States it was also the seedbed and funder of radical Islam.
The big powers of Britain, the US, France, Germany and Russia also remained the source suppliers of weaponry.
"We can see the splinter in our neighbour's eye more easily than the plank in our own," Father Dobson said.
He said the level of bombardment of Gaza by Israel was not in any way justifiable.
However Hamas did use schools and hospitals as missile firing stations and had constructed a huge network of tunnels to infiltrate Israel's borders.
"Israel feels threatened but neither acknowledges the other's right to exist," Father Dobson said.
"Eighty percent of Israeli Jews and Muslims would give anything for peace. They are tired of it."
Father Dobson said the bombing of London in the First and Second World Wars showed such action steeled resolve rather than cowered people.
"The Jews should realise that when they blow up Palestinians it just increases their will to fight," he said.
"The father of violence is violence."
Father Dobson said the Jews should know what it is like to be persecuted and that the use of the military to crush a people simply did not work.
Equally Hamas was totally focused in the pursuit of the Islamic principle of primacy.
Father Dobson said the desire among the vast majority of Muslims for peace and harmony sprung from their humanity rather than religion.
The former Dean of the North Coast Parish of the Catholic Church said without doubt religion was a real part of the problem.
He does not differentiate between the behaviour of extremist Jihadist Muslims and the actions of Reformation Christians. Both killed to enforce their particular view.
But Father Dobson warns that the conflict in the Middle East including the ongoing Shiite-Sunni conflict that is driving the death toll through the roof in Iraq but appeared to be occurring almost without notice, had the potential to spread like the Ebola virus.
"It can catch a plane and spread," he said. "The Federal Government is rightly worried but may not be doing enough."