In the torrent of hate propaganda,
a tiny voice is speaking out for
decency and humanity and asking
others to join.   -  
mideastweb.org

Never doubt that a small group of
thoughtful, committed citizens can
change the world. Indeed, it is the only
thing that ever has.   -  Margaret Mead

The First Steps
To A Better Future

Why this is the right strategy:

As violence has raged over the past four years, trust and dialogue
between Israelis and Palestinians have broken down. Neither side
has shown it’s prepared to reach out to the other unilaterally. We
can either wait and hope for positive political changes or the
Palestinian and Israeli people, acting outside of politics, can take
the first steps to a better future together.

Waiting isn't an option:

The first choice - waiting and hoping - isn't really an option. While
we wait, innocent lives are lost, hope retreats and enmity grows
more entrenched. If we wait, we risk letting an opportunity for
progress slip away. We can’t leave progress up to politicians
alone. Progress depends on the Palestinian and Israeli people
deciding to choose nonviolent engagement over violence and hope
over hatred.   

A reason to choose hope:

If you want people to choose hope over hatred, you need to give
them a reason to believe that hope is a realistic choice.
Palestinians and Israelis need clear evidence that the other side
can move beyond hatred and be a partner in peace.

A critical mass of support:

Some public initiatives have shown that large numbers of
Palestinians and Israelis will support political compromises to
achieve peace. These efforts provide reason for hope, but they
haven’t yet come close to building a critical mass of support for the
specific political solutions they seek.

While those efforts are important, the climate of bitterness and
distrust impede their progress. As long as Palestinians and Israelis
harbor deep doubts that progress is possible, neither side will be
able to build a critical mass of support for doing what is necessary
to work for peace.

Without such broad-based support, they won’t be able to convince
Palestinians and Israelis that the other side is ready to choose
hope over hatred. With no clear public mandate, political leaders
will find it difficult to seize any opportunity for progress and those
who seek to stand in the way of progress will feel emboldened.

A simple and powerful message:

By taking to the streets simultaneously, Palestinians and Israelis
can deliver a clear and powerful message of hope. Both sides will
be demonstrating mass support for resolving the conflict without
further violence. Both will be showing that they’re willing to take
constructive steps for peace once the message of non-violence is
heeded.

Each side will be saying to the other that hope
is a realistic choice
and that progress
is possible. This simple message will give each
side reason to believe that the other can be a partner in peace.

By marching at the same time, Americans will increase the
influence of those working for peace.

Taking the first steps together:

A sustained campaign of marches in the U.S., Israel and
Palestinian territory will show that all sides are committed to taking
the first steps to a better future together. Since all sides will be
marching at the same time, no one will have to act unilaterally or
risk looking weak.

The voice of the people:

This effort will generate enormous media attention and deliver a
message with the power to get people talking and to change
minds. As more and more U.S. cities take part each weekend and
greater numbers of Palestinians and Israelis march, media
attention will be sustained and momentum toward peace will grow.

This show of hearts on all sides will make it clear that Palestinians,
Israelis and Americans all want to be partners in peace. That will
set in motion the kind of political changes necessary for peaceful
engagement to resume. In the end, politicians must follow the will
of the people, and this may be the only way to make sure the voice
of the people comes through loud and clear.

Changing the world:

This effort will provide a shining example to the world that non-
violence can yield results in the most bitter of conflicts. Nothing
would do more to marginalize those who embrace terrorism as a
strategy for achieving political aims.

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