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Empathy in the lands of two tribes

Roslyn Dee


 

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A settler holds an Israeli flag outside the West Bank outpost of Amona (AP)

A settler holds an Israeli flag outside the West Bank outpost of Amona (AP)

A settler holds an Israeli flag outside the West Bank outpost of Amona (AP)

I know all about two-tribes mentality - I grew up in Northern Ireland, after all.

Not only that, but as the child of a so-called 'mixed marriage' (how my late parents hated that term) who was raised in the Protestant tradition and attended a school which totally embraced that ethos, as a young teenager I lived in dread that religion would come up for discussion in class and that my Catholic credentials would be exposed.

To discover, therefore, when I crossed the water to university in England at the age of 18 that nobody knew what religion anybody else was - and cared even less - was such a revelation. A lightness-of-being moment.