Video Game Promotes Peace

A new video game launched this month bravely tackles the decades-old Palestinian-Israeli conflict and offers hope, at least virtual, of a peaceful solution.

Video Game Promotes Peace

"We wanted to prove that a video game could address a very serious current social issue and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is obviously one that resonates with a lot of people in a lot of different places," Eric Brown, one of the creators of the game, told Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Brown said today's political leaders embroiled in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict could gain inspiration from PeaceMaker and come to realize that in the end concessions will have to be made by either side.

PeaceMaker requires players to assume the role of the Palestinian president or the Israeli prime minister and to maneuver their way through a series of events.

The game has real news footage and earns players points depending on their response to each situation and the ensuing local and international reaction.

Someone who takes on the role of the Palestinian president, for example, can earn points by promoting peace, a two-state solution and building infrastructure.

The ultimate goal for each player is to find a stable resolution to the conflict and win the Nobel Peace Prize before his or her term in office ends.

The peacemaker's player has the option of consulting advisors before making each decision.

The game has a rather simple interface showing a map of Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories and a menu of political, humanitarian and military actions for players to try to calm tensions in the region.

A player can choose from three levels of play: "Calm," "Tense" and "Violent" that regulate the number and frequency of incidents that a player is expected to respond to as a leader.

The game can take up to six hours to play. It is available in English, Arabic and Hebrew.

Losing in 5 Minutes

PeaceMaker may be too much of a challenge to some players.

Brown said: "We heard that an Israeli general played the game and he lost in five minutes."

"He said it wasn't realistic," he added.

Brown, 30, said the game will not resolve the thorny Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but rather it will enable people to be familiar with the concerns of both side of the conflict.

"We don't obviously say that we've mapped out the actual road map to peace in the Middle East but we're just hoping that somebody who plays the game will get an idea of what the concerns are of either of the sides," Brown said.

"We've taken the position that at least in our world, in the one that we've created, you can at least make forward progress," he added.

The Palestinian-Israeli conflict has been at the heart of the Middle East instability.

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas said on Sunday that Israel must accept the new national unity government being set up between rival factions and start peace talks.

"This is a Palestinian issue and an Arab issue and it is up to the Israelis to deal with the fait accompli," Abbas told the Jordanian news agency.

He stressed that it would be the Palestinian presidency and the Palestine Liberation Organization which would lead any peace negotiations with Israel.

On April 18, 1948, Palestinian Tiberius was captured by Menachem Begin's Irgun group, putting its 5,500 Palestinian residents in flight. On April 22, Haifa fell to the Zionist mobs and 70,000 Palestinians fled.

On April 25, Irgun began bombarding civilian sectors of the Palestinian city of Jaffa - the largest city in Palestine at that time, terrifying the 750,000 inhabitants into panicky flight.

On May 14, the day before the creation of Israel on the rubble of Palestine, Jaffa completely surrendered to the much better-equipped Zionist gangs and only about 4,500 of its population remained.

In the 1967 six-day war Israel occupied Al-Quds (East Jerusalem) and the remaining part of the Palestine.

A plethora of peace negotiations were held between Israel and the Palestinian Authority in 1990s but all failed to find a final solution to that conflict.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16