As part of our program we've had the opportunity to hear from a number of guest speakers who've covered a wide range of topics including history, Christian Zionism, refugees, Islamic movements, women's rights, illegal home demolitions, the Intifadas and more. Just yesterday, we had leadership training in non-linear thinking from Sami Awad, the director of Holy Land Trust. We then heard from Daoud Nassar at the Tent of Nations speak about his family’s peaceful struggle to hold onto their land and their guiding philosophy of "We refuse to be enemies."
These talks have given us a wealth of information, and challenged us to think critically about the complex issues surrounding the conflict, as well as examine our own actions and assumptions. Daoud was especially inspiring because of his persistence in years of adversity despite countless efforts to drive him off his family's land. This persistence has been rewarded, and Daoud and the Tent of Nations have become leaders in the field of sustainability, partially as a result of the very actions Israel has taken to make him leave, such as cutting off his water and electricity, and (once the Wall is finished) even his access to the rest of the West Bank. The fact that he has done so much in the face of so much external pressure, and that he still maintains a loving attitude towards his "enemies" despite everything, inspired all of us.