Message from MCW co-founder and Chief Operating Officer
Joint Statement by an American Jew and an American Muslim of Palestinian descent, both who deeply care about the future of a prosperous, peaceful and nonviolent Israel and Palestine.
As conflict in the Middle East escalates, anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim and anti-Christian heinous acts throughout the region and world are on the rise. We call on humanity to resist the global politicization of conflict.
We observe global protests, pro-Israel and pro-Palestine, and ask “what about pro-tolerance?” We call on the world to put differences aside and march as one, with a simple message of tolerance, and hope that we shall overcome this day of war.
The conflict in Israel and Gaza continues to overshadow the gross violations of human rights and mass-atrocities in the region and around the world. This includes the crisis in Syria, which has claimed over 100,000 lives, and Iraq where death from violence continues unabated. We call on the United Nations and the world to value equally all human life, an equivalence that the media and politicians unfortunately distort.
We value religion, and hold sacred the traditions and spiritual value of our ancestors. We call on those around the world who value religion to not use what is sacred as a justification for violence. We mourn the loss of Israeli and Palestinian life equally, as humans. We do not celebrate death as victory.
We value the principle that education is a fundamental human right. However, we view any education system that directly or indirectly promotes any form of hatred or retribution as a violation of human rights.
We are disheartened by our global leaders, and encourage the people of the region to fight for good governance and leadership that reflect the values of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela. The Middle East needs now more than ever leaders that embrace these values and live them every day, in peace or in war.
We are pained by the disproportion of young people who are affected by conflict in the region. We urge young people to follow our footsteps as young voices in the Jewish and Palestinian diaspora to speak with a common voice of compassion and tolerance, while not losing sight of one’s individual values and principles.
We call on the world to not lose site of the vision and dream that we share, for a two-state solution with two countries, side-by-side in peace, working together to protect the citizens and dream of the day when competition is based on the principles of economics and not violence.
We dream of the day when the beaches of Tel Aviv and Gaza will be filled with locals and foreign tourists, enjoying the sun and not looking up with fear.
Eddie Bergman Co-founder, MCW and Khalid Elachi, Chief Operating Officer, MCW
*These are our personal views and not of the organization.