While being treated for the gunshot wound learned that his brother was killed by Israeli soldiers. “He was not a terrorist, but a beautiful father of two children,” Awwad says. “He was not just my brother, he was my best friend. He was not a criminal. A soldier killed him at a check point. And I have to live with that.
“When this happened to me I lost the taste of my life. The easiest thing is to take revenge. This is the first thing you think about. I could kill an Israeli soldier, it might be the same one. Or an Israeli. But how many? If it is about revenge then it is about punishment, and if it is about punishment it is about justice. But what is justice?...
When we become strong enough we can create justice, not by killing others but by the moral actions that we do, and that is the best revenge. Because when we speak the truth without hatred, without anger, then maybe peace can start.”
A Palestinian peace activist and Jewish rabbi and settler brought powerful personal stories of awakening and reconciliation to a forum, “Painful Hope: Understanding, Transformation, and Non-violence,” at the U.S. Capitol on October 11, 2016. The forum, hosted by the Global Peace Foundation USA in partnership with the Sustained Dialogue Institute, Roots, Friends of Taghyeer Movement, Oakbrook Church, Churches Middle East Peace, and Church Women United, highlighted two important grassroots initiatives that are working to build trust and engagement between the separated communities.
Read full forum report here.