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Ad Hoc Interfaith Delegation to Israel and West Bank, 1982

Photo: Archives / AFSC

“In response to the increasing tension and violent conflicts between Israelis and Palestinians, and out of a deep concern for the nonviolent resolution of the conflict in the Middle East, an interfaith delegation, co-convened by the American Friends Service Committee and the Fellowship of Reconciliation, traveled to Israel, the West Bank and Gaza” in March and April of 1982. The seven delegation members included Bernita Bennette, historian and protocol officer of the Martin Luther King  Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change; and David Tullin, Executive Director, Fellowship House, and member of the executive committee of the American Zionist Federation.

The twenty-one page report offers observations about the role of “Village Leagues” appointed by Israel; insights about Palestinian resentment of U.S. policies coupled with reliance on U.S. intervention to bring about a resolution; a singular voice among Palestinians versus an array of opinions among Israelis; and concerns among Israelis about PLO annihilation alongside fear that policies associated with the occupation were “eroding the moral fabric on which Israel was founded”—the latter heard even from a spokesman for the conservative Likud coalition.

Created Date 
Mar 14, 2016