Promoting Peace in Israel
Peace Now is the leading voice of Israeli public pressure for peace.
• support the right of Israel to exist within secure borders and the right of our neighbors to do the same;
• advocate for a politically-negotiated 2-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict;
• believe that Israel’s unique status as a free and open democratic society in the Middle East endows the Israeli public with a special responsibility to promote the basic human rights of freedom, justice, and equality for all people in this region; and
• work to break down divisive stereotypes through education on both sides of the conflict.
We are Israel’s most veteran and diverse peace movement with over 10,000 members from the Middle East and around the world. Our work has been supported and endorsed by hundreds of prominent academics, politicians, and philosophers, including Amos Oz and David Grossman.
The majority of Israelis and Palestinians support a peaceful 2-state solution. Peace Now insists that politicians on both sides of this issue serve their constituencies by creating the reality of peace NOW.
Peace Now works to ensure that both Israelis and Palestinians embrace the only viable solution to the conflict: the creation of a Palestinian state in the territories adjacent to Israel, which were occupied as a result of the 1967 war – A Two State Solution.
Peace Now believes that continued occupation of these territories harms Israel economically and politically and damages the values and fabric of Israeli society.
Peace Now’s mission is to promote peace and democracy through education of the Israeli public and concerned citizens worldwide. We further hope to inspire the public to take part in developing initiatives that will both support long-term peace promotion and remove existing obstacles to a politically negotiated two-state solution.
Peace Now was founded in 1978 during the Israeli-Egyptian peace talks. At a moment when these talks appeared to be collapsing, a group of 348 reserve officers and soldiers from Israeli army combat units published an open letter to the Prime Minister of Israel calling upon the government to make sure this opportunity for peace was not lost. Tens of thousands of Israelis sent in support for the letter, and the movement was born. When Egypt and Israel signed their historic peace treaty in 1979, members of Peace Now and the general Israeli public realized that public pressure and action in support of the peace process could and would dictate the course of history.
In time, Peace Now became convinced that the only viable solution to the conflict was the creation of a Palestinian state in the territories adjacent to Israel, which were occupied as a result of the 1967 war.
In 1988, upon PLO acceptance of UNSC Resolution 242 and the principle of the two-state solution, Peace Now led a massive demonstration of 100,000 persons calling on the government to negotiate with the PLO. Peace Now fully supported the break-through represented by the 1993 Oslo Accord, during which Israel and the PLO negotiated directly for the first time, and as a result of which Israel withdrew its military from areas of the West Bank and Gaza and the PLO renounced violence and publicly accepted Israel’s right to exist.
In 1994, Peace Now and its supporters celebrated another historic breakthrough when Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty normalizing relations between the two countries.
Over the many years of its existence, Peace Now has consistently supported any and all steps promising to promote a resolution to the conflict, in addition to pressing all Israeli parties in power to initiate steps to bring about an end to the occupation, return to the 1967 boarders and negotiations for peace.
Partners in Peace
While Peace Now is an Israeli movement, working primarily amongst the Israeli public, it also has been engaged over the years in dialogue and joint activities with Palestinians in the occupied territories. Shortly after the beginning of the second Intifada, the movement was instrumental in the creation of the Israeli Peace Coalition, which evolved into the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Coalition, composed of political and public figures as well as grass-roots activists from both the Israeli and Palestinian mainstream.
In 2006, Hamas was elected to the majority of Parliament seats in the Palestinian Authority. In 2007, control over Palestinian territories split, with Hamas retaining control over Gaza and Fatah controlling the West Bank. Peace Now supports negotiations between the government of Israel and any willing representative Palestinian body. At the start of such negotiations Israel will demand a complete renunciation of terror. Entering negotiations will be an implicit recognition of the State of Israel.
Regardless of such official negotiations, Peace Now will continue conducting a dialogue with people and organizations who belong to the Palestinian peace camp.
Peace Now operates through public campaigns, advertisements, petitions, distribution of educational materials, conferences, lectures, surveys, dialogue groups, street activities, vigils, and demonstrations.
A particularly important ongoing project of Peace Now is its Settlement Watch, which monitors – and protests, the building of settlements, including housing tenders, expropriation of lands in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Well known and regarded for their credibility and reliability, the data and maps produced as a result of this project have raised public awareness of the terrible price Israel is paying for these obstacles to peace.
How we use your donations and contributions
The activities of Peace Now are partially sponsored by S.H.A.’A.L. – Peace Now for Israel Educational Enterprises (R.A.), a registered NGO, which, among other things, implements educational activity for promotion of peace by publicizing informational materials, organizing informational gatherings, etc.
Projects that your donations help us implement:
Settlement Watch Project
We believe that the presence and expansion of settlements in the Occupied Territories and in East Jerusalem have the potential to corrupt the process of political negotiation about these disputed areas. These activities must not be allowed to derail the negotiated solution favored by the majority of Israeli and Palestinian citizens. The Settlement Watch Project was founded to monitor and report on these activities to the Israeli public and the world. As part of the Settlement Watch Project, we:
• conduct aerial and ground surveys that monitor and expose settlement expansion in the occupied territories; and
• create media reports, maps in English and Hebrew, and materials for briefings and press conferences based on information collected from our settlement monitoring activities.
Israeli Student Campus Project
Israeli youth are particularly interested discovering and promoting peaceful solutions to the conflict. To educate and inform this group, we:
• Lead a series of open debates and 6–week peace courses on campuses throughout the country;
• Distribute brochures, maps, and easy-to-read booklets to students on campuses;
• Conduct monthly tours to West Bank and East Jerusalem;
• Sponsor and direct annual Dialogue Workshops with Palestinian students.
East Jerusalem Project
To monitor, educate and advocate against the attempts to prevent the Two State Solution being implemented in Jerusalem. Activities include production and distribution of educational materials, walking tours, meetings between Israeli and Palestinian Jerusalemites, public pressure committees and campaigns.