THE PRACTICAL ADVANTAGES FOR MUSLIMS, JEWS AND CHRISTIANS OF PEACE FOR PALESTINE AND ISRAEL

by mgopin on October 10, 2010 · 2 comments

The hardest part of building peace for the future is freeing oneself from the wounds of war, the mutual recriminations of the present, the painful memories of a lost past, and the unreasonable fantasies of a world where one’s enemies magically disappear. Sometimes the way forward is to free the mind to build a different world, a world of practical possibilities should peace be achieved.

Let’s imagine the following: a full peace treaty between Israel and Palestine, official creation of a state of Palestine on the West Bank and Gaza, with East Jerusalem as its capital, a shared civil regime for the quarter mile of the Holy Basin in the Old City of Jerusalem that is overseen by Israeli and Palestinian Jews, Muslims and Christians, and a way for every Palestinian refugee camp’s residents to be awarded citizenship and compensation in a variety of countries including Palestine itself.

The first thing to occur would be a massive explosion of religious tourism, a venturing beyond boundaries to forbidden and exotic lands, places only grandparents saw with their own eyes. This would be true of Jews, Christians and Muslims. There would be pilgrimages to the holiest and most ancient places in Syria, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, and many other countries. Muslims from all over the world will converge on the Haram al Sharif in Jerusalem. Dozens of companies will provide routes from all over the world for Muslims to travel from places as far as Malaysia and China to Jerusalem and Mecca. This will result in an explosion of Asian and Middle Eastern new joint business ventures.

Highways and hotels will multiply dramatically on the roads between Cairo, Gaza, Jerusalem, Haifa, Beirut and Damascus. The few brave souls who have tried recently to connect all these routes to Mesopotamia and the birthplace of Abraham in Iraq even in wartime will be followed by millions more people in a time of peace. Tourism is the most democratic of all wealth producing industries, and millions of jobs will be created in many sectors across religious worlds.

Without the severe contest of Jewish and Palestinian identities, the search for the ancient Middle East beneath ground will reach new and more sophisticated levels of collaboration leading to a vast expansion of archeological and academic research, also translating into many more jobs.  There will also be an explosion of inter-religious and inter-ethnic business. We will begin to see business partnerships emerge overnight between the Gulf States and Israelis. Some of this infrastructure already exists, but quietly. But it will emerge in the full light of day.

Corrupt and unfair businesses will no doubt increase, as they always do, but the absence of inter-religious conflict over Palestine and Israel will encourage Jews, Muslims and Christians to cooperate at a deeper level of cultural values. Let me explain.

To cite an example of emerging patterns of cooperation, I am a co-founder of a Palestinian/Jewish business partnership called MEJDI, Middle East Justice and Development Initiative (www.mejdi.net). It is a social enterprise, meaning that we are for-profit, but our profits are made only in cooperation with clients who pay their workers fair wages, and everything we do is geared toward supporting peace and social justice. We are pioneering both tours and academic seminars to the Middle East, and beyond, where most dollars spent support and patronize businesses with a clear reputation for fair wages. Profits are also re-invested in lecturers and tour guides who are reputable activists for positive social change. We thus offer a good product, tours and seminars, but with direct investment in change makers and honest businesses.

This is just one example of the intersection of small business empowerment and social change that cuts across the lines of Muslim, Jew, and Christian. I have learned after 27 years of peace activism in the Middle East that ignoring inequality and poverty is disastrous, and it violates every tenet of the region’s religious traditions and values. Serious attention to fair wages, however, and financial support for social change activists will be a game changer in the region. Imagine how many of these cooperative venture would flower if peace comes.

Generations, even centuries, of Arabs, Muslims, Christians, and Jews, built mutually prosperous relationships; it is time to recover their legacy. The key to the future is imagination with a conscience. Then all obstacles seem smaller, more of a nuisance. But without imagination, all one ever sees are roadblocks. I prefer the view of an open road.

Originally posted at: http://www.muslimsdebate.com/n.php?nid=4984

© Marc Gopin

Previous post:

Next post:

adobe premiere free download

buy cheap creative suite adobe reader download portable adobe flash direct download cheap adobe reader download 5 download adobe flash 9 for h264

adobe rider download

buy cheap adobe illustrator CS5 adobe page maker full download download and install adobe flash onto my computer cheapest free download adobe rea adobe in design 2 download

adobe photoshop 8 free download full version

buy cheap adobe after effects adobe pagemaker trial version download adobe photoshop cs3 extended download for free buy cheap adobe photodeluxe download adobe photoshop cs download osx

adobe 8 crack download

adobe acrobat x cheap can i download adobe filter factory adobe golive cs2 download buy cheap adobe nine flash player download free adobe photoshop 6 download

adobe flash player 9 cannot download to internet explorer 7

cs5 master collection cheapest free adobe pdf maker download adobe creative suite 3 download cheap download adobe cs3 free p2p adobe photoshop tutorial download

adobe acrobat pdf download free

buy cheap creative suite 5 adobe after effects cs2 download adobe flash psp download buy cheap adobe illustrator 8 download adobe illustrator cs3 crack download

adobe acrobat 6 free download

buy online creative suite 5 download adobe illustrator cs2 trial adobe live motion download buy online adobe cs3 free download pdf and adobe and download

download adobe photoshop elements 5tutorial

adobe incopy buy online free download adobe acrobat professional 6 free adobe illustrator cs2 download cheapest adobe photoshop trial download free adobe photoshop elements download

adobe photoshop 8 free download adobe photoshop cs3

adobe creative suite 5 cheap adobe download site adobe indesign download cheapest download adobe photoshop 8 cs adobe acrobat download warez

free download able adobe

cheap photoshop lightroom 3 download adobe pdf writer 4 adobe after effects demo download cheapest adobe photoshop 8 free download pdf and adobe and download

adobe flash player download for vista 32 bit os

cheapest cs5 master collection adobe flash offline download iran download adobe photoshop buy online download adobe photoshop download cracker adobe acrobat

download adobe reader 5

buy online adobe premiere pro adobe acrobat writer download adobe premiere free download buy online is download for adobe flash player free adobe file converter download

free adobe illustrator cs3 download full version

adobe web premium cheapest download add on error with adobe acrobat download adobe after effects 5 buy online free adobe photoshop elements download free download of adobe photoshop cs2