The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

PBPL 85 Tours the Knesset

Ali Abu Anwad and Shaul Judelman

Ali Abu Anwad and Shaul Judelman, a member of the Executive Committee of Friends of Roots, tell the story of the organization to the PBPL 85 participants.

Touring the Knesset

Following a question and answer period with Dr. Yousef Jabareen, students toured the Knesset.

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On Tuesday, Dec 8th, the class set out to fill in some of the gaps of knowledge that we need to fill in order to write our memo. In the morning, after breakfast at our hotel (complete with Hanukkah donuts), we departed for Gush Etzion, a cluster of Jewish settlements in the breathtaking Judean Mountains. Our guide for the morning, Shaul Judelman, took us on a walk through the mountains and explained the history of the place and its significance to the Jewish people (we even got to explore an ancient ritual bath). Then Judelman, a member of the Executive Committee of Friends of Roots, took us to the Friends of Roots headquarters, where he told his story and the story of the organization.

Roots is a remarkable project that draws Israelis and Palestinians together for dialogue and operates outreach programs that engage both groups. At Friends of Roots, we also heard from Ali Abu Anwad, a leading Palestinian activist who advocates for non-violence. Anwad shared his story and his realization that non-violence resistance is the only successful method that exists for the Palestinian people to gain their independence. After listening to Anwad and Judelman, the class enjoyed a delicious meal and played with the puppies that lived at the Friends of Roots site (puppies for peace!).

We then rushed to the Knesset for a meeting with an Arab-Palestinian Knesset Member, Dr. Yousef Jabareen. Jabareen helped the class better understand the position of Arab-Israelis in today’s Israeli society and the difficulties of being an Arab Knesset Member. Following a question and answer period with Jabareen, we were also given a tour of the Knesset.

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