Experience dictates that mutual understanding and genuine coexistence cannot be imposed by leaders, but need solid interaction between societies at grass-root level. This applies in particular to a region like the Middle East, where a prevailing conflict has left its destructive imprints on every sphere of life.
By the direct encounter of people, the FNF therefore tries to help to bring about a deeper understanding of the other and a possible change in perceptions, which is necessary to overcome long persisting resentments and hostility.
To this end, the FNF implements – independently or in cooperation with local partners – Israeli-Palestinian dialogue activities, which provide the participants with an opportunity to openly exchange their opinions on historical, political and cultural aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and to discuss ways of reaching conflict resolution and mutual understanding.
An outstanding example of these activities is the “Shared Histories Project”, a dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian historians and intellectuals from various disciplines on controversial perceptions of the historical development and events in the region. This project is implemented by the foundation together with the Israeli Yakar Center for Social Concern, Jerusalem, and the Center for democracy & Community Development (CDCD), Jerusalem.
An important component of FNF’s dialogue activities is our fruitful cooperation with the Peres Center for Peace on economic and civil society issues.