I don't understand

Every once in a while I get the overwhelming urge to take a plane to Israel or Ireland, or some other war ridden country, and bang some heads together. Not to just join in with the violence already there. No, to bang some heads together in the faint hope it will knock some sense into those stubborn people.
How can you go on killing and destroying, when time and time again it is shown that nothing will change by it? That killing and hating more people will only result in more killing and hating?
Both parties say they have a claim on land and subsequently they will bomb and kill for it.
And it sometimes feels like they will go on doing that until there is no-one left to live on the land they've faught for. And they will use every means possible. They'll threaten, and throw bombs at children, they'll kill children. I've even seen a father holding his two or three year old son as a human shield, while he was engaging into a battle with members of a different religious group.
How can you use your child like that? How can you look at a child and hate it, just because he or she belongs to a nationality, or religious group you are at war with? How can you hate a child, period?
How can you kill a child, or teach a child to kill?
How can we harbor hope, as long as there are children willing and eager to learn how to kill, who will sacrifice their own lives in order to take a few lives of the "enemy"?
If the children are the future, it sure looks gloomy in some places.

Note: this piece was written before September 11th 2001, and sadly enough that tragedy emphasized everything I've written here.

© 2001 Bertine Centen-Nieuwenkamp