Summer 2017 Newsletter

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In this 50th year of the Israeli Occupation, CPWJ organized and collaborated to bring 10 educational programs this Spring, reaching more than 680 people within faith communities and universities throughout the Triangle. In February, CPWJ screened Al Helm: Martin Luther King in Palestine at the Highland Memorial Church’s Third Tuesdays Forum in Raleigh. The documentary shows parallels between the civil rights struggles of African Americans and the liberation struggles of Palestinians Click here to Read More

In May we began an online book club with 14 members of Good Shepherd UCC church, in Cary who are discussing Chosen: Reading the Bible amid the Israeli Palestinian Conflict. The author is noted Biblical
scholar, Water Brueggemann. We seek to support other communities in book studies and film screenings from our CPWJ library. Contact us at information@cpwj.org if your church or community group is interested in hosting

PRISONER OF HOPE: PEACE ADVOCATE MITRI RAHEBFROM BETHLEHEM VISITS NC
The entire article is authored by Susan Shinn Turner and originaly appeared on The Salisbury Post., a summary folows. On March 24, Lutheran Bishop Tim Smith introduced Raheb as keynote speaker at White Memorial Presbyterian Church in Raleigh to an audience of more than 200. On March 25, Raheb joined an interfaith discussion at Church of the Reconciliation in Chapel Hill. Appearing with him on the panel were Sandra Korn, a representative of Jewish Voice for Peace; Faisal Khan, an American Muslim who is founder and director of the Carolina Peace Center (also a CPWJ Board Member); and the Rev. Mark Davidson, the church’s pastor, also a member of the Abrahamic Initiative for the Middle East.
You can read more of the entire article at this link:
http://brightstarsbethlehem.org/

Along with the Charles M. Jones Peace and Justice Committee of the Community Church of Chapel Hill, Unitarian Universalist, CPWJ cosponsored Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD, founder of the Palestinian Natural History Museum located in Bethlehem, www.palestinenature.org. On June 28th, to a full house, in Chapel Hill, Dr. Qumsiyeh gave an update on life in Occupied Palestine. On June 29th at Raleigh’s Natural History Museum’s Science Café, to an equally well-attended event, he lectured on the situation of “Biodiversity and Conservation in Today’s Holy Land”.
See video here:  http://naturalsciences.org

Another of CPWJ’s major initiatives is The Promised Land Museum: The Jewish Museum of the Palestinian Experience. The idea for a “Promised Land Museum” about the Palestinian experience arose from my growing up in an Orthodox Jewish community and attending the Hebrew Academy of Washington, DC. We learned and internalized Jewish morality, to treat
others as we would want to be treated. Our community included Holocaust survivors and memories of many more who hadn’t survived. The lesson of the Holocaust and the persecution of Jews was not lost on us: We, the “Chosen People,” have to fight injustice wherever we see it.Click here to Read More

Contact your congressional representatives and the White House. US House of Representatives & Senate Switchboard Operator: (202) 224-3121. If peace is to prevail, point out that a just and sustainable solution requires freedom, equality, security for all. Here are some talking points for written or telephone contacts.

1. The Occupation and colonization of Palestine must end

2. Human rights violations need to be stopped, including freedom of expression restrictions, unfair trials, detention of children, limiting movement, destruction of property, and diversion of water.

3. Palestinians can reclaim their land so that they are guaranteed a viable future and an equitable allocation of resources.

4. Any US military and security force aid to a unit committing human rights violations must be terminated as well as any other funds that sustain the decades-long occupation.
Thank you!

This spring’s activities included CPWJ members attending a Jewish Voice for the Peace-sponsored rally to show support for 1500 or more Palestinian hunger strikers jailed in Israel. The vigil in downtown Durham was held May 15, marking the 69th anniversary of the Nakba — or the “Catastrophe” when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were expelled at gunpoint from their land and homes when the state of Israel was created.
Over 60 people of different ages and faith backgrounds turned out for the event. The vigil opened with a reading of the words of Marwan Bargouti, a prisoner and the strike leader who described harsh conditions in the prisons and detailed the strikers’ demands. A local representative from the Inside/ Outside Alliance then described the harsh realities faced by prisoners in Durham and how the two groups suffer similar repression.Click here to Read More


December 2016 Newsletter

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2016 has been a very busy year for us at The Coalition for Peace with Justice. We have partnered with people and groups of all backgrounds, continuing to diversify our reach. In addition to our long-standing supporters, we have made a concerted effort to target students, the local universities, and churches throughout our area It all began in February with guest speakers Maya Wind and Eran Efrati, this was the first of five programs that occurred in the first half of the year. In May, we hosted Dr. Steve Feldman talking at Peace Covenant Church in Durham concerning his project “Promised Land Museum” about the Palestinian experience, which can be found at www.promisedlandmuseum.org. Click here to Read More

CPWJ would like to spotlight another agency seeking justice. The No Way to Treat a Child campaign seeks to challenge Israel’s prolonged military occupation of Palestinians by exposing widespread and systematic ill-treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system. It is the data-driven project of Defense for Children International – Palestine and American Friends Service Committee. In 2015 and 2016, CPWJ brought representatives from this human rights campaign to audiences in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, and Greensboro The No Way to Treat a Child campaign is committed to securing a just and viable future for Palestinian children living in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, and envisions a world where all children attain rights in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and other international standards. Currently, Jewish Children who come in contact with the law are not put in this military court system but are afforded full legal protections under Israeli civil courts, which is not the same series of events Palestinian children encounter. Click here to Read More

We have several excellent programs already on the calendar for 2017, marking the 50th anniversary of the Occupation, and the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. We will be hosting events in June and November marking these significant points in the history of the Palestinian people. In March, we will be co-hosting Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb at an event titled “Dare to Dream: Ecumenical Educational Conference on Peace and Justice in the Middle East”. This two-day event will occur in both Chapel Hill and Durham.

We look forward to building more coalitions, strengthening our partners to be more effective and reach more people. At CPWJ, we bring information from non-mainstream media to the public in a timely manner. We will continue to work with peace builders like the Palestinians, Israelis, Americans and the international community throughout the world. Please make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, our website, and get our emails. Thank you for your support, and we look forward to another year of advocating for freedom and equal rights to end Occupation and colonization


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Woman_nakba_dress_jug_newltr.jpg On Friday, March 18, from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. a reception and exhibition at the National Press Club, Washington, D.C., will mark the grand opening of the online museum PromisedLandMuseum.org: The Jewish Museum of the Palestinian Experience. Dr. Steve Feldman will be welcoming press and other visitors at the exhibit in the Winners Room of the National Press Club.A project of the Coalition for Peace with Justice, the museum complements the common understanding of the founding of Israel with first-hand resources describing how Palestinian families came to be expelled from their homes and villages. Click here to Read More

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For over a decade, the Coalition for Peace with Justice (CPWJ) has been the strong, persistent voice that has worked for peace for both Palestinians and Israelis in Israel/Palestine. Focusing on education, advocacy, and direct support, CPWJ is a coalition of activists and concerned citizens who work for an end to the military occupation of Palestine with the goal of seeing a just and sustainable peace for both Israelis and Palestinians. Click here to Read More

Carol Durham is dedicated to making a difference in Palestine through her volunteer work with CPWJ. She has “always been drawn to the Middle East and the history of the early Christian Church.” Her former pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Fort Wayne, Indiana helped add a new dimension to that interest.

“He was very involved in the Palestinian issue and ‘got me radicalized.’ The depth of the injustice to Palestinians speaks to me,” Carol explained. She has traveled to Israel-Palestine three times in 12 years. Click here to Read More

 Eran Efrati, a former Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) soldier, and Maya Wind, a conscientious objector who refused to serve in the IDF, relayed their thought-provoking experiences to an audience at Meredith College, Raleigh, NC on February 22, 2016. Mr. Efrati is presently executive director of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions USA and Ms. Wind is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University. Click here to Read More

 The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD)recently completed its 189th rebuild of a Palestinian residence. ICAHD is a non-violent, direct-action group based in Israel originally established to oppose and resist Israeli demolition of Palestinian houses in the Occupied Territory. ICAHD’s activities have grown to extend to three interrelated spheres: resistance and protest actions in the Occupied Palestine Territory; efforts to bring the reality of the Occupation to Israeli society; and mobilizing the international community for a just peace. Click here to Read More


November 2014 Newsletter

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As a Jewish American, Dr. Steve Feldman grew up collecting coins to support planting trees in Israel. His lifetime interest in the Holy Land eventually led him to CPWJ. Steve decided to become involved with CPWJ four years ago after a Winston-Salem interfaith group he was involved with hosted one of the many speakers CPWJ brings to North Carolina every year.

Steve grew up in a Jewish community learning that Israel could do no wrong but his understanding evolved. “I came to believe that Palestinian families deserve peace and justice just as much—novmore, no less—than Israeli families or anyone else. Judaism taught me that all people should be treated as equal. The Holocaust taught me that it is wrong to mistreat people—not just Jewish people,” he said. “CPWJ is working to help end the mistreatment of Palestinian families, and nothing could be more consistent with Jewish morality. I felt the need to do something, and CPWJ was doing something,” he added.Click here to Read More

The Coalition for Peace with Justice mission is unique. There are many organizations in the U.S. that support an end to the occupation through education and activism. Many raise funds for one peacebuilding
organization in Israel/Palestine. CPWJ goes beyond offering direct financial support for one or two organizations. Your gifts to CPWJ provide financial support to 10 different Palestinian and Israeli organizations.
During the shelling of Gaza this past summer, Al Ahli Arab Hospital, one of the organizations CPWJ supports, issued an urgent appeal for financial help. CPWJ heard the call and responded. Through the generous support of donors, we received over $2,000 for Al Ahli to aid their heroic efforts in providing treatment for thousands of burned, wounded and traumatized Palestinians.Click here to Read More

Advocacy is a stated goal of CPWJ. CPWJ has a long history of regular meetings with elected officials and staff in order to bring awareness of the changing realities in the region. In October, Mary Lou Leiser Smith, CPWJ founder, and Dee Froeber, managing director, met with Rep. David Price, (D) 14th District.

Smith and Froeber discussed two main issues from their June travel to Jerusalem and the West Bank. Smith expressed appreciation for Price’s efforts to prevent a demolition on the property of Hope Flowers School, one of CPWJ’s peacebuilding organizations in Bethlehem, Palestine. She went on to point out Israeli land grabs and subsequent settlement expansion in the area near the school, all of which are illegal under international law.Click here to Read More

Approximately 700 Palestinian children under the age of 18 from the occupied West Bank are prosecuted every year through Israeli military courts after being arrested, interrogated and detained by the Israeli army. The most common charge levied against children is throwing stones, a crime that is punishable under military law by up to 20 years in prison. Since 2000, more than 8,000 Palestinian children have been detained.
In practice before the military court system, there are no special interrogation procedures for children detained by the Israeli military, nor are there provisions for an attorney or even a family member to be present when a child is questioned. The majority of children report being subjected to ill-treatment and having forced confessions extracted from them during interrogations. Click here to Read More

CPWJ took a major step forward in March when Davis “Dee” Froeber became its first managing director. He has an imposing portfolio: program development, advocacy, fundraising and nonprofit management. And he brings to the role an extensive background in the world of citizen diplomacy and international relations.

Dee spent the month of June in Palestine and Israel, meeting with more than 25 organizations that are dedicated to non-violent resistance to the Occupation. Among them were the leaders of eight organizations that receive financial support from CPWJ. Click here to Read More


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