Hope in the heart of darkness

Our project partners Combatants for Peace have been campaigning for nonviolence in Israel and Palestine for almost 20 years. This experience strengthens them as a movement in the face of violence. We reproduce their latest newsletter:

We, Palestinian and Israeli activists, call upon all sides to end the war and cease all forms of violence, and most urgently, to stop the targeting of civilians.

Having taken part in this century-old violent conflict, we know its price, and its futility. Today, more than any other time in the past, we maintain: there is no military solution to the conflict; violence breeds violence; revenge fuels revenge. As Mahatma Gandhi notably said: “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” That is exactly the situation right now with so many people drowning in pain and loss, and so many blinded by hatred and revenge.

Even in the heart of darkness we will not lose sight of our path. Despite the violence, because of the violence, we hold on to our belief that both people can live in this land in safety, dignity and liberty. At this difficult time we need to foster solidarity among those who are committed to nonviolence, human rights, justice, and our collective liberation. Let us stand alongside each other and speak our minds and hearts. Let our joint community and our collective actions define the road ahead.

In unity, we call upon all Israelis, Palestinians, as well as the international community not to give up on humanity, and respect the lives of all equally. We urge both peoples to stand for life and to oppose ideologies of hate, discrimination and supremacy, that have led us all to destruction and death. We call for an end to the occupation, which perpetuates this conflict, and for a real political solution, promoted and supported by the international community.

Let us show the world that even now, there is another way. Even in the heart of darkness, there is still hope

Our movement has engaged in extremely difficult conversations over the last week and a half. How does a nonviolent joint movement act in the midst of war? How do we listen to each other, especially when we are hurting and grieving? How can we move forward collectively even when our experiences and perspectives differ?

While many communities are finding it difficult to stay together at this time, we are holding strong, and using all of our 20 years of experience as a joint movement of Israelis and Palestinians to stay united, even through seemingly impossible situations.

schwelle project partner Combatants for Peace

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