Psychological Impact of Military Violence on Children as a Function of Distance from Traumatic Event: the Palestine case

The psychological well-being of 114 Palestinian children aged 5-16 was assessed with questionnaires. Three groups of children were distinguished: children living at close proximity (500 meters or less) to a bombed target; children living within a distance of 500-1000 meters, and children living at a greater distance than 1000 meters. The results showed that the well-being of Palestinian children was negatively affected by the military and political violence to which they were subjected. The study also demonstrates that psychological security is as crucial as physical security to the wellbeing of children. It may not be sufficient to relate the impact of a traumatic event to the physical distance alone, psychological distance also has to be taken into account.

Baker, A.M. and Kanan, H.M.