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Little Known Peace Efforts in the Middle East
an article by Sandy Gaser

I am writing to share an amazing e-list with the readers: International Forum For The Literature & Culture of Peace. I was introduced to IFLAC last year, in San Francisco, by Dr. Ada Aharoni, a professor in Haifa, Israel. By following the day to day conversations of Israelis and Palestinians, I've been joyfully overwhelmed by their tenacity for peace and ongoing efforts, regardless of the turmoil and difficulties in that region. Time and again, I've read about rallies for peace, sometimes attended by thousands, peace bridge work, conferences and meetings in homes, and very little of this news reaches our media in the U.S.

It is necessary that we make ourselves aware of the ongoing peace efforts in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, from citizens living in the region. I now take every opportunity to let friends and acquaintances know. Please go to the website, join the e-list and become amazed at what is not being presented in mainstream media. Recently I learned about a project in the Middle East known as "Oasis of Peace," in which students, both Israeli and Palestinian are encouraged by trained facilitators to examine each other's opinions and emotions, deepening their respect and relationships.

Another example: The Arab soccer team (Arabs living in Israel) just recently won the State Cup in Israel (Fact: Israel's Arabs, who number some 1.1 million, make up nearly a fifth of the population). This is what the Arab team captain had to say, "We have qualified for Europe and we will prove to the world how to make peace between Jews and Arabs". And, there is so much more, i.e. article in the Jerusalem Post last week: "New York Jewish Girl Scouts Sister Up With Palestinian Counterparts".

When I contrast the plethora of peace related projects discussed on the IFLAC e-list, with a total disregard for its relevance in mainstream media, I have to question why such vital information is being neglected. A friend has stated very succinctly "Citizens of the U.S. need to know what it is that they don't know."


Question(s) related to this article:

A Holyland Protectorate peace scenario,

Why does the media neglect vital peace efforts in the Middle East?,

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Latest reader comment:

May I draw your attention to a new peace proposal that could finally bring justice and peace (= "equalpeace") to the residents of Israel and Palestine?
 It envisions a "Holy Land Protectorate" in lieu of present-day arrangements in Israel / Palestine. The concept may be found online at
 This scenario would offer something better than statehood to Palestinians and Israelis: World Citizenship, with U.N. passports, and a real chance for them, as brothers and sisters, to live in peace and to see their children and grandchildren grow and prosper in peace, like proverbial vines in the recesses of their homes.
 We live in desperate times, which call for new thinking. If any of you have peace-oriented Web sites, please consider linking this new mideast peace proposal to them. It deserves a wider discussion and readership.

This report was posted on May 28, 2004.