Jennifer Aaronson
Americans For Peace Now (Blog)
July 12, 2011 - 12:00am

A few years ago I was walking down the streets of San Francisco wearing an old t-shirt that said pro-peace, pro-Israel. A man yelled back at me that I could not believe in both. I was so shocked by his outburst that I didn't know how to respond-so I chose to ignore him. I was only fifteen at the time so that was probably for the best; however, that encounter has been ingrained in my mind ever since.

This summer I am interning at Americans for Peace Now, and I am witnessing first-hand a group of dedicated individuals working towards peace in order to secure a better tomorrow for Israelis, Palestinians, and Americans . My positive experience thus far has been reinforced through APN's joint internship program with the American Task Force on Palestine. The joint program includes a Palestinian interning for APN and an Israeli interning for ATFP. The interns from both organizations also come together for educational and social events.

We had our first meeting on July 7th, sharing pizza, stories, and laughs as the staff and interns from each organization learned more about one another. The room was filled with a positive energy as we came together, united in our belief of peace. As Ghaith al-Omari, the Executive Director at ATFP, said at the meeting, it is not about being pro-Israel or pro-Palestine, but pro-peace.

Mr. al-Omari is exactly right because it is peace that will give Israelis and Palestinians the security and wellbeing they both seek. As a result, the two organizations are dedicated to finding a peaceful resolution to the conflict. While I may feel discouraged at times because of the polarization of the dialogue surrounding the conflict, this partnership demonstrates that there is an alternative. A middle ground exists, one that provides a forum for those who believe peace and a secure future for both sides is possible. The collaboration of APN and ATFP sends a powerful message that gives me the confidence to know that through advocating for peace, I am supporting Israel.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017