JRC Israel/Palestine Study Tour Featured in +972!

Aziz Abu Sarah has just posted a wonderful piece in +972 about our JRC trip to E. Jerusalem and the West Bank last December:

To my knowledge this is unprecedented, a delegation of Jewish congregants sleeping in Palestinian refugees homes, eating from their food, playing games with their children and grandchildren—a few even smoking hookah all night long with the youth of the camp. They talked about music, life, culture, romance, and–against my advice–even politics. The host families were the average Palestinian families and not the elite Palestinians. Some family members did not speak English, yet they did not have a problem communicating. They proved that the language of humanity transcends any linguistic boundaries…

Some Jewish extremists claim that if a Palestinian state is to be created, the Jews will not be able to visit their holy sites in the West Bank. They argue that Palestinians would not grant them the freedom to worship there. This argument is the basis for many settler justifications of the Occupation.

Nineteen Jews proved that this notion is not necessarily true. The Palestinian families in Deheisheh Refugee Camp did not mind hosting Jews, not just in hotels but rather in their homes. They stayed under the same roof, with no protection, no weapons or checkpoints. They were safe because they came as friends, not as enemies. They came with flowers and gifts, not with guns.

5 thoughts on “JRC Israel/Palestine Study Tour Featured in +972!

  1. It’s trips like these and the blog posts that are written about them that give rise to optimism about the future and help disperse entrenched prejudices and assumptions.

    Let there be many more trips and blog posts like these!

  2. Thanks for sharing this ecumenical aspect of your recent trip to Israel. It’s another step in a continuing dialog between Israelis and Palestinians.

    Yashar koach

    Larry Rosen

  3. Amazing and uplifting proof that peace and reconciliation are achievable goals if you start at the very basic level of seeing your supposed “enemy” as a fellow human being and not someone to be feared and reviled. Great story! 🙂

  4. Thanks for sharing this wonderful story. Kol hakavod to y’all for staying in Dheisheh. I visited as part of a day trip to Bethlehem and Hebron a few years ago, but wasn’t able to form the kind of connections which Aziz Abu Sarah describes in this essay. Wow.

  5. what this shows,is that palestinians and jews can get along..and we have known this all along…..what is needed …is good will from the politicans

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