It’s been eight years since APN first partnered with New Story Leadership (NSL), a program that brings Israeli and Palestinian fellows to Washington for six weeks of leadership-skills development. The program includes an internship with a Washington-based nonprofit or a congressional office and intense dialogue to foster a better understanding of the other side to the conflict. For most fellows, this is the first chance they have to engage in intense conversations with young people from the other side of the Israeli-Palestinian divide, to listen, reach out, forge relationship and often make friends. The program has given birth to several Israeli-Palestinian nonprofit partnerships.
Each summer in the past eight years, APN has hosted a couple of NSL fellows – an Israeli and a Palestinian – sometimes in partnership with the American Task Force on Palestine. And each year, we host the group for an introductory meeting to tell the fellows about APN and Peace Now. On Friday, July 1, we got together at our office with the NSL fellows and staff for what was supposed to be a short introductory meeting, and turned into a fascinating two-hour discussion about efforts for Israeli-Palestinian peace and prospects for a two-state solution.