Will peace ever come to the Middle East? "Combatants for Peace" tour NH this week

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A Palestinian and an Israeli die, go to heaven, and ask God, “Will there ever be peace in the Middle East?” God answers, “Yes, but not in my lifetime.” For those who yearn for peace in the Middle East but don’t believe it will happen in their lifetimes, Palestinian Osama Elewat and Israeli Netta Hazan offer an alternative vision. They’re coming to New Hampshire May 1-3 to demonstrate that peace is possible in our lifetimes and to model what it looks like. Ex-fighters from opposite sides of the conflict formed Combatants for Peace, a grass-roots organization founded on the conviction that the cycle of violence will only end when Israelis and Palestinians join forces to promote peace and security for both sides. The organization’s ground-breaking work has earned its founders a nomination for the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize. 

(Click on the image to watch the trailer) 

Elewat and Hazan will share their personal stories of transformation and will describe their work to bring peace to their respective homelands. The presentations will include a 25-minute clip of the award-winning documentary Disturbing the Peace. Their goals are to humanize the other, to see their shared values, to understand and take responsibility for their path to conflict, to take joint nonviolent actions and to show there is an alternative to violence. 

This program offers a rare opportunity to meet people on opposing sides of conflict who have learned to honor both their own and their enemies’ narrative in order to work towards their common goal. Audience members will have opportunities to ask questions of the presenters and to put themselves in the shoes of the “other” as a first step in understanding the other side’s perspective.  

New Hampshire lawyer and international legal-political affairs consultant Phillip J. Walker will act as moderator. His expertise in legal and political reform in post-conflict, transitional and developing societies was honed through work in the Middle East, including Israel/Palestine. He will ensure that the discussion remains respectful, flows smoothly, and affords spaciousness for everyone who wishes to participate.  

Elewat and Hazan will give three presentations, each free and open to the public:

Tuesday May 1, 6:00-8:00 pm
Manchester City Library, 405 Pine Street

Wednesday May 2, 6:30-8:30 pm
Unitarian Universalist Church of Concord, 274 Pleasant Street

Thursday May 3, 6:30-8:30 pm
Portsmouth Public Library, Levenson Room, 175 Parrott Avenue

The Combatants for Peace tour in New Hampshire was made possible in part with support from New Hampshire Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Humanities.

New Hampshire Humanities programs are made possible in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this these programs do not necessarily represent those of the NEH or New Hampshire Humanities.