Judaism places supreme value on the pursuit of peace which requires compromise and painful decisions.
True peace is more than merely calling for the cessation of war: it requires a durable plan that offers security and safety for all. It cannot be achieved by one side or another alone, but only by all parties working together.
We hope that the resources below will help to guide you through what peace might look like for Israelis and Palestinians, beyond an end to the immediate violence and towards a durable plan that will ensure lasting safety and security for all.
The following video is an interview with Christiane Amanpour with two bereaved parents and peace activists, associated with The Parents Circle Families Forum.
A good place to start is this list of statements, compiled by The Alliance for Middle East Peace (ALLMEP), bringing together the words of their numerous partners and friends on the ground in the aftermath of October 7th. These words have been coupled with incredible work over the weeks that have followed.
Standing Together- @IAvneri
Following that intervention, a group of Human Rights organisations issued a joint statement with a vision for peace even in these darkest of days. It has since been followed up by an open letter and campaign under the heading of ‘A Joint Jewish-Arab Declaration for Peace’. These are all vital and clear contributions from organisations that have felt the pain of the past weeks deeply and personally.
It is especially worth thinking about Women Wage Peace’s founder, Vivian Silver (z’’l), who was murdered by Hamas during the massacre of her kibbutz, Be’eri, on October 7th. She dedicated her life to building a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians; Arabs and Jews. We have seen powerful reflections on her life and work over the past weeks from across the political spectrum, including in The Economist, The Forward, Ha’aretz and +972, all proudly carrying her legacy of building peace even through this despair.
The cessation of fighting alone will not bring peace. Veteran human rights organisation Peace Now has been working for decades to build an enduring foundation for mutual co-existence. As they reiterate here, only a political vision can secure real ‘victory’. This is a call echoed from first-hand experience on the ground in Gaza too, as this IDF veteran explains here.
We can play a small part in pursuing peace ourselves through the conversations we have in our own communities. Talk Matters is a fantastic example of this work, and their directory provides a valuable list of organisations doing this work, both in the UK and on the ground.
The following video is of peace activist Vivian Silver (z’’l) talking about her beliefs. Disclaimer: the text above this video was written after discovering that Vivian Silver had been killed by Hamas, having previously thought to of been taken hostage.
📢Truly heartbreaking to hear that the death of peace activist Vivian Silver has been confirmed. Vivian was a brave and unwavering voice for peace and humanity, who unapologetically saw Palestinians as humans, something many fail at. May she rest in peacepic.twitter.com/Ev7Z9j4Ph5
— Ramy Yaacoub (@RamyYaacoub) November 14, 2023
We have curated resources and links to organisations that help explore further the values within our statement, mainly through the work of organisations in Israel. Our Jewish Values do not necessarily agree with or endorse every word and every position in each resource or from each linked organisation.