‘Protesters demand death penalty for terrorists’

Times of Israel: January 30, 2014Illustrative photo of a banner with hand stamps in red paint during a protest in Tel Aviv against the prisoner release  (photo credit: AP/Tsafrir Abayov)

An emotive and, at times, an understandable demand but one unlikely to find speedy fulfillment in any of Israel’s political or judicial circles.

A far better request would be a call for the death penalty to be visited upon the conflict itself, the thing that gives rise to such expressions of anger and frustration in the first place.

But how is it possible to kill something that has endured for decades and where killing is part and parcel of its nature, the very substance and driving force behind so much of its existence?

The answer is to tap into that force, draw off some of its venom, make modifications to increase its potency many times over and then redirect it back into the body of the beast. Death should not be expected to follow immediately but a form of suspended animation might easily be induced, a solitary way station en route to final extinction for a 66 year-old serial killer.

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Death visits us all in the end. But, by prematurely ending conflicts such as this one and then so many more thereafter, death resumes his traditional place in the fullness of years, not partway through life nor, as can sometimes happen, at its very beginning.