Following the successful and inspiring Journey to Peace that brought us into the widespread public awareness, we have launched the Women’s Parliament. To inaugurate this new initiative in our lagislative strategy, dozens of Women Wage Peace (WWP) members attended the opening of the winter session of the Knesset [Israel parliament] on October 23. While there, we distributed copies of our latest public statement, the Call for Peace, whichencourages our leaders and legislators to work toward a diplomatic agreement and to adhere to Security Council Resolution 1325, which calls for representation of women in all matters related to conflict resolution. Knesset members (MKs) from across the political spectrum thanked us for our perseverance and for returning the word PEACE to the public discourse.
Since the opening session, dozens of WWP members have been sitting in the gallery at the Knesset plenum every Monday, as well as meeting with individual MKs from nearly all the political parties. In addition, a group of Jerusalemite-area WWP members have been attending various Knesset committee meetings, explaining our mission and voicing our demands.
YES, IT'S POSSIBLE : the Journey to Peace
On Sunday, 8 Oct. 10,000 people, including 3,000Palestinian women, joined us in our Peace Village in the still-scorching desert outside Jericho. Thousands of women, Israeli and Palestinians, marched together through the desert, dressed in white, holding banners, singing and calling for peace. That evening, 30,000Israelistook part in our march through Jerusalem,ending in a spirited and moving rally (see video of the evening event).
Two days prior to these culminating events, 3,000 women, men, and children joined us in Tel Aviv/Yaffo for the final leg of our 15-day journey throughout the country; the event was organized by WWP's Young Women’s group, one of our fastest-growing sectors. See its video clip
In the 15 days leading up to the marches through the desert and through Jerusalem, we travelled to nearly every corner of our country, visiting dozens of peripheral communities in Israel southern and northern regions. Read the Travel Dairy of this inspiring Journey to Peace.
worldwide media coverage continues
Interest in the Journey to Peace and in our movement has continued non-stop withwidespreadover 200 international news articles, radio interviews, videos, and op-eds.Here’s the link to international coverage:
The breakdown in languages used for reporting is as follows: 90 pieces in English; 45 in French; 12 in Italian; 7 in Spanish; 5 in Russian; and 28 in other languagesincludingArabic, German, Polish, Norwegian, Estonian, Hungarian, Dutch, Portuguese, and Indonesian. An equally long list of varied domestic (Israeli) coverage in Hebrew and Arabic can be found here.
Among the media surprises was the following tweet fromthe Queen [dowager] of Jordan, Noor Al Hussein, widow of King Hussein, who was responding to an English-edition Ha’aretz video: "Women naturally tend to see further than men what is in the best interests of their families and communities #womenwagepeace".
Ghadir Hani - a woman waging peace
Two years ago, after visiting the WWP 'fasting tent' outside the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem, Ghadir Hani, originally from Akko in the north and now a resident of the Bedouin town of Hura in the south, joined WWP.Two months ago she represented WWP at the Rimini meeting in Italy. Ghadir is familiar with women social issues, currently empowering Beduin women and leading the Wadi Attir sustainability project, which combines Beduin knowledge of faring in arid conditions with state-of-the-art technology.. Read more about Ghadir
project GO IN PEACE hits the road again
After taking a break for the Journey to Peace, we have returned to 160 major traffic intersections on the first Thursday and Friday of each month, during the busiest hours before the weekend. Thanks to smart organizational infrastructure, any woman can find an intersection or shopping center near her at which to join other women for an hour and half of holding or wearing large WWP signs and waving to passersby.
This popular grassroots project continues on December 7th and 8th.
waging Peace around the world
Unprecedented media coverage of our Journey to Peace brought us even more invitations to participate and talk in Peace conferences and rally around the world.
On early November, Yael Deckelbaum and her band led a women March in Brazil (see photo). Two WWP representatives, Tania Harkavi and Juliet Kahwaji who had been invited to speak by the Brazilian Jewish community, also joined the women's march, met with artists and Jewish leaders across this large country and presented them with our Call for Peace.
Michal Shamirparticipated in the Mediators Beyond Borders International’s MBBI Peace conference in the Hague, the International City of Peace and Justice. During this conference dedicated to concrete issues that can nurture peace, Michal talked about WWP and showed videos from our Journey to Peace. The MBBI directors were so impressed that they suggested a special task force be created to support our mission in every possible way.
Marie-Lyne Smadja and Amal Rihan were invited by La Maison d'Yitzhak Rabin in Paris for a ceremony marking twenty-two years since Rabin's assasination (photo by Erez Lichtfeld). This Jewish-Arab pair were also hosted in the French Senate by several MPs who promised to acknowledge our movement in every future meeting with Israeli officials.
Peace is not an utopia ; It is the necessary foundation for the lives of the two peoples in this place, in security and freedom