TEENS. FOR PEACE.
Teens For Peace in the Middle East was built on a vision for a platform where teens can interact to across borders to help mediate conflict.
War and conflict cause humans to have a set mindset by the time they enter adulthood, specifically in hatred toward others and the unknown. Our project works to interview Israeli and Palestinian teens about their experiences with the conflict, and how it has impacted their past as well as how it will impact their future. Teens from around the world can then learn about the tough questions about the conflict between Israel and Palestine from the perspective of someone their age by watching these interviews. Crossing several borders and on several continents, we are a network of politically involved students working to fix our world through understanding and empathy.
We're so glad you've come to learn about our efforts. On this site, you'll also find educational materials, our blog, interviews, and more. Through learning the unbiased facts and history, you can understand why our efforts to connect teens are so crucial in this day and age when division is stronger than ever.
WHO WE ARE
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has caused suffering, tension, and violence for millions over the span of 9 decades. Peace seems far off, and our goal is to understand why the situation has grown so hostile and how we can play a part in fixing the world through connecting teens from Israel/Palestine to teens around the world. Through debate, asking, answering, interviews, research, education, and social media, we look to understand the past and present of the issue, and work towards a brighter future. The ultimate goal of our organization is to create a teenage generation passionate about creating solutions for peace based around the truths of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
WHAT DO WE DO?
How do we reach and educate passionate teens?
WE TELL STORIES.
Below, you can find quotes of some of our most powerful stories, taken from a variety of interviewees from diverse backgrounds. While quotes can't do an entire story justice (head over to our interviews page for that), we can learn quite a bit from a teen in just a few words. These stories are why we do what we do, and have inspired us to work towards a more peaceful and just world among young people in the Middle East.
“We hear the siren starting, and then literally 5 seconds later, we just hear the loudest sounds of our lives. We hear the glass of the window shatter...we look outside and everything is just on fire. There’s a massive hole in the ground...everyone’s screaming and shouting. There’s a little metal ball, my mom still has it, from the rocket, that landed on her bed.”
Liran - Israeli (18)
OFFICIAL STATEMENT REGARDING UNREST
Teens for Peace condemns hatred and violence in all forms. Specifically, we view distributing misinformation and using it to promote antisemitic or Islamaphobic ideology as reckless, irresponsible, and shameful. We call on Israeli and Palestinian leadership to recognize the physical and mental state of the citizens involved, specifically children. There are two sides to every issue, and to every event. While it is true Israeli rockets have killed Gazan children, it is also true Hamas has used these children as human shields to increase the death count for international sympathy.
It is crucial to remember that average citizens aren't the people pushing the button to send rockets, and aren't the ones promoting the destruction of the other side. In many or most cases, citizens don't agree with the actions of their government and yet are treated as if their ideas are represented by their government. Most Gazans don't want to be living under Hamas rule, and the actions of Hamas cause hatred towards Palestinians as a group. MOST PEOPLE WANT PEACE. But we only hear about those who don't.
Finally, we affirm that antisemitism and antizionism are two separate ideologies. One may believe Israel should not exist, but that person should not cause that belief to create hatred towards the Jewish people as a group. It is irresponsible to promote the decisions of the Israeli government or military as representative of the Jewish people as a whole, and it is irresponsible to take a stance on the actions of any government without being fully educated. Denying or downplaying the Holocaust as anything less than a genocide, and an extermination of a people based solely on identity, must be condemned. Otherwise, history is doomed to repeat itself.
The passion for this project derives from a place of emotional connection to the land, to Judaism, and to a love for peace. Teens for Peace was built by a Jewish teenager from the USA who saw the furious hatred from both sides and wanted to do something about it.
IF YOU'RE BRAND NEW
You're exactly the person we're looking for! Our goal is to spread awareness and to do that, we must start from the very basics. Explore our blog, educational materials, and timeline on this website, and if you're an Israeli or Palestinian teenager interested in being interviewed, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We want to create a well-informed teenage generation aware of the life-changing conflict in the Middle East. We don't want to overwhelm you, so the video below is a great place to start, as well as the blog. It'll give a quick history of the issue, and if you decide you want a more in-depth look, head over to the education page here. If you have not yet taken our survey and are not from Israel or Palestine, please head there first (this is so we can provide a more directed and effective education on the topic.)