Last Monday brought a devastating conclusion to the 18-day search for three missing teenagers in Israel with the discovery of the bodies of Naftali Fraenkel, 16; Gilad Shaar, 16; and Eyal Yifrach, 19. Tens of thousands attended the funeral, and the international community echoed the nation’s grief; Barack Obama said that as a father, he could not imagine the pain of the parents. Yet as a world leader, he urged restraint in Israel’s response, encouraging Israel and the Palestinian Authority to work together in pursuing justice and to “refrain from steps that could further destabilize the situation.”
UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon suggested that “this heinous act by enemies of peace aims to further entrench division […] and to widen the conflict. It must not,” he asserted, “be allowed to succeed.”
Months after American-brokered peace talks broke down, their warnings against provoking escalation went unheeded.