Our Roots

The entire premise of the Center for Jewish Nonviolence is that there’s power in using our privilege as Jews from the Diaspora to resist the occupation in solidarity with Palestinian and Israeli nonviolent activists. 

On May 19, 2014, the Israeli army uprooted hundreds of fruit trees on Daoud Nassar’s family farm, the Tent of Nations, located just south of Bethlehem in the West Bank.  The Tent of Nations is an internationally known educational and environmental meeting center where people from around the world come together. The Nassar family has lived on this land for the last century, despite efforts by the Israeli government to displace them. During this time they have welcomed thousands of visitors from around the world, including hundreds of Jewish visitors from Encounter and other programs over the course of the last decade.

When the tree uprooting happened, Ilana Sumka, past Jerusalem director of Encounter, was asked to facilitate an international phone call with Daoud Nassar and Encounter alumni. When Ilana asked Daoud how Jews around the world could support him, Daoud replied: you could come replant the trees with us in a show of solidarity, to demonstrate that the Israeli Army’s bulldozers don’t represent your Jewish values.

Nine months later, in February 2015, twenty-five Jews from the US, Canada and Europe spent a week replanting trees on the farm and the Center for Jewish Nonviolence was born.

The Center for Jewish Nonviolence was founded on the premise that Jews from around the world standing in solidarity with Palestinians who are facing eviction from their homes and displacement from their land is both necessary and groundbreaking.

Activists from the Center for Jewish Nonviolence are united in their commitment to nonviolent activism, to a just and equitable end to the occupation and to the full equality and shared humanity of Israelis and Palestinians alike.

In its founding, the Center for Jewish Nonviolence recognized that coming together across political and ideological differences–such as BDS, Zionism and one-state/two-state solutions–can yield immense power in working to end the occupation. As a result, the Center established a ‘big-tent’ policy to embrace a diverse range of activists who work together to end the occupation and lift up the values of dignity, equality and shared humanity.

Get updates on CJNV campaigns committed to shared-resistance:

Choose Solidarity and Coresistance for the Coming Year

 

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Give today and help us continue our years-long and unwavering commitment to Palestinian activists in their non-violent struggle against the occupation, through building long lasting relationships and partnerships, and by bringing Jewish activists from around the world to engage in creative nonviolent activism.

This work--building partnerships and networks of solidarity--is what we need to face the challenges ahead. Partnership and coresistance upend the systems of division and oppression of Jews against Palestinians, and instead proclaims a vision solidarity, joint struggle and mutual support.

That choice is what is needed to take on the joined forces of division, bigotry and fear-mongering. When those in power choose to ostracize and oppress, we choose to link arms and struggle.

Now, as this calendar year comes to a close and the next one begins, join us in choosing solidarity and coresistance with a generous end of year contribution.

By joining in this end of year campaign and helping us reach our goal of $15,000 you are sustaining and bolstering years-long relationships and resistance work between Diaspora Jews, Palestinians and Israelis. Your commitment and investment helps strengthen and expand an unprecedented and boundary-pushing network of activists who choose solidarity and mutual liberation.

Already, in just a few weeks, another 50 Diaspora Jews will be in the West Bank standing alongside Palestinian and Israeli grassroots leaders in struggle against home demolitions and for freedom of movement and access to clean water.

After that, there will be more delegations, more opportunities to show up for our partners, and more moments to stand together and choose freedom and equality.

We all know that this doesn’t happen without countless hours spent planning, organizing, training, visioning and relationship-building. And, those hours are sustained by the support of hundreds of individuals like you and me who believe that solidarity and coresistance can upend the oppression the Israeli occupation and bring peace and justice to all of us.