Hilik Bar at conference in Guatemala: Region requires courageous leaders

"In the Middle East, we need leaders ready to walk the extra mile to make peace.”

October 19, 2018 13:30
1 minute read.
Labor Party MK Hilik Bar

Labor Party MK Hilik Bar 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)


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The Middle East needs leaders who are ready to walk the extra mile to make peace, Zionist Union MK Hilik Bar, who heads the Knesset’s two-state caucus, told 500 leaders and parliament members from 70 countries last Thursday in Guatemala

Bar was the keynote speaker at the CUMIPAZ leadership conference on advancing peace in conflict areas. He praised the organizers, because he said it is not popular nowadays to go beyond praying for peace and to actually promote it.

“Too many leaders don’t want to make concessions for peace,” Bar said. “Enduring demonizing and threatening is what it takes to be a courageous leader. In the Middle East we need leaders ready to walk the extra mile to make peace.”

Bar said too many world leaders try to manage conflicts instead of solving them.

“Brave leaders don’t manage conflicts,” he said. “Brave leaders solve conflicts, even if it’s hard. A real leader doesn’t think about talkbacks or likes on Twitter or think about his next election results. He should think about the next generations on his side and the other side of the conflict.”

Applying that philosophy to Israel, he urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to work with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and build him up as a partner.

“Our destiny is not to submissively accept the existence of this conflict,” Bar said. “That’s wrong, it’s against the Jewish spirit, and it never was the true intention of Zionism.”

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