Israel's Peace Now movement convened on Friday the third annual conference of Israel's peace camp. More than 700 people braved the weather - the worst winter storm in more than a century - to participate, and more than 100 spoke.
Participants included members of Knesset, prominent pundits, leading experts on peace and security, and prominent activists on this issue and on other progressive causes.
This is the third year in a row that Peace Now organized the annual conference of the Israeli political progressive camp. Last year's conference featured APN Board Member Mandy Patinkin as its keynote speaker.
This year's keynote speaker was Israel's Opposition Leader, MK Yitzhak (Bouji) Hertzog, who opened his remarks by stating that "there is a peace camp, which is large and powerful." He added: "I am telling you unequivocally: there is a partner for peace. And I am telling you unequivocally: there is a rare opportunity for peace... It's time to mark the target. There is an immediate necessity to reach a settlement, backed by the international community and the Arab League, to stand on recognized borders, the 1967 borders, with settlement blocs and land swaps."
The success of Peace Now's conference underscores the fact that there is a large and energetic constituency in Israel, which supports peace and the two-state solution. As the photos and videos of the event make clear, this constituency crosses generations and includes important figures from Israel's intelligence and national security community. Here is a link to Yariv Oppenheimer talking about the significance of this year's conference
Videos from the event (in Hebrew) are available here. We are hoping to add English subtitles shortly
This year's conference was kicked off by a short video that Peace Now recently produced, which demonstrates that Peace Now and its supporters are the real Israeli patriots, who care about Israel's character as a Jewish state that can proudly call itself a democracy.