On the same side?

A Jerusalem-based peace initiative is attracting settlers, haredim, left-wingers and Arabs.

June 22, 2015 18:45
Israel and Palestinian flags

Israel and Palestinian flags. (photo credit: INGIMAGE)


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 Last week, some 200 people gathered at the capital’s Agron Youth Hostel for the first public launch of the “Two States, One Homeland” peace initiative. The crowd spanned an unusually broad swathe of Israeli society for such an event, with settlers, kibbutzniks, Arabs and haredim joining left-wing peace activists.

Although it was not a religious gathering, the Thursday conference opened with a recitation of “Shehehiyanu” – the blessing one makes on something new – and the audience responded with a loud “amen.” Indeed, the initiative has an element that one doesn’t find in most other peace endeavors, which is the central place it gives to both the profound attachment of Jews to the Land of Israel, and the genuine yearning of Palestinians for the places they lived before 1948.


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