JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. - Watching the news and reading stories online about the escalating conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians is a daily ritual for Doris Mendel of Leawood, Kan., and Eman Qandil, of Overland Park, Kan.
Mendel's son is serving in the Israeli Army, and Eman is an American whose parents are Palestinian. They are women with opposing views who share a common hope.
Mendel believes the Israelis have suffered rocket attacks from the Palestinians for several years, so Israel is justified in bombing the Palestinian targets in the Gaza strip.
Qandil believes the Israelis attacked the Palestinians first and took their land, so Palestinians are justified in returning fire against Israel.
But both women agree they hate seeing people die on both sides of the conflict.
"I want the conflict to end," Mendel said. "Innocent men, women and children are dying, and it needs to stop."
Qandil shared the same sentiment.
"People are dying and it's awful to see it happening," she said.
They hope that politicians will find a diplomatic solution so the killing can stop.
Both Israeli and Palestinians in the United States have separate efforts to collect cash, clothing and household items to help people displaced by the bombings.
Call the Islamic Center of Kansas City at 816-763-2267 if you would like to help. You can also visit their website at www.isgkc.org.
To help the Jewish Terror Relief fund, call 913-327-8100 or visit www.jewishkansascity.org.