NEW Israeli, Palestinian youth leadership

NEW stories for new Middle East, USA

Thursday, 16 September 2010


"The best way to predict the future is to invent it."

            -- Alan C. Kay  (1989)

               Scientist and visionary

"If we want a new future, we have to have a new story."

            -- Paul Costello (2010)

                Founder, New Story Leadership

New Leadership:
New Story

     Young Palestinian and Israeli leaders-in-the-making convened in Washington DC during summer 2010.
     Liel Maghen is a Jewish Israeli from Tel Aviv.
     He is a student of Political Sciences and Middle Eastern studies at the Hebrew University.
     Mariam Ashour is a Muslim Palestinian from Gaza.
     She is a student of Business Administration and Marketing at Columbia College in South Carolina. 

     NEW STORY LEADERSHIP FOR THE MIDDLE EAST-- -- brought them and other Palestinians and Israelis together in Washington, DC, for a 2010 summer of shared internship experiences.
     They understand "if we're going to have a new future, we have to have a new story."
     The young relationship-builders found new ways to awaken trust, understanding, and better ways to cooperate in their part of the world.
     They found in Washington "experts" who lacked our experience and perspective were trying to tell their story while emphasizing mostly points of disagreement human failures, while mostly excluding opportunities for compromise.
      Mariam and Liel described what they learned:


Letter to our leaders

by Liel Maghen and Mariam Ashour

Common Ground News -- 16 September 2010


     These youth insist on being heard, and "to educate listeners about how desperate our generation is, on both sides, for a peaceful and lasting resolution."
     They defined today's new "heroes of peace: those who confront the conflict through an attempt to achieve reconciliation and forge personal connections and cooperation with the other side."
     ". . .political agreements depend on trust and understanding that can only come from people-to-people connections," agreed their fellow Palestinian and Israeli interns.
     "We urge you to understand that you cannot, and need not, achieve a peace agreement alone - you need the input from young people," these young scholars of excellence remind government professionals.
     This wisdom from the youth was offered, they wrote, in "a time of reflection and reconciliation in Jewish and Muslim traditions..."

     SEE and HEAR MORE NEWS about NSL interns telling the "new story of people getting along together" while "making politics personal."


Interns From Israel and Palestine Work Together in US

Fox TV news -- 7-1/2 min Fox News -- 19 Aug 2010

A "New Story" for the Middle East

WAMU-FM 88.5 FM  -- Friday, 27 August 2010

Mariam Ashour

New Story Leadership

10-min video -- 06 August 2010

Liel Maghen

New Story Leadership

3-min video -- 20 July 2010

Muslim Palestinian builds
Jewish synagogue
free of charge
  In late 2006, a  Palestinian-born American Muslim from Springdale, Arkansas. reached out to help the local Jewish community build a synagogue in the heart of the Bible Belt -- at no charge.


Passing over toward each other in Deep South:

Muslim Palestinian helps Jews find a home

Passover Tuesday, 03 April 2007


     Today in 2010, almost four years later, TEMPLE  OF PEACE is a forthcoming documentary film by Hayot Tuychiev ( ) to chronicle Fadil Bayyari's involvement and grand opening in 2009 of Temple Shalom, the first permanent synagogue for the Reform Jewish congregation of Fayetteville, Arkansas.


Temple of Peace

2010 documentary film

3- min video trailer -- 09 September 2010


     Temple Shalom -- -- synagogue construction manager Jeremy Hess and Fadil Bayyari embarked upon this ambitious venture to bridge gaps between Jews and Muslim and bring these two communities together.
     "Maybe in the United States we can show people a different path. I can help you," the new film says of the Palestinian's extraordinary of goodwill.
     This new film about Muslims and Jews in Fayetteville, Arkansas, shows the how-to of deciding to cross lines toward one another and build new kind of "facts on the ground."
     Fadil Bayyari, a native of Tulkarem, West Bank, can be reached at 479-530-5555 or
     He says" "My dream is to go back to the old country and see people have learned to get along."

     MORE about this instructional story and process:


Temple ends 28 years of wandering -- Thursday, 10 December 2009

Muslim helps build Jewish temple

Channel 5 News -- 3 min video


Becoming More Diverse

The Free Weekly -- 09 August 2007

Boston Jew and West Bank Muslim Build a Temple, and Bridges, in Arkansas

The New York Times - 06 October 2007

Know They Neighbor

     Iftar in the Synagogue 2010: Know Thy Neighbor was Thursday evening, August 19th -- in Chicago.
     Over 250 people met for the sixth year of removing barriers, learning about different faith traditions and celebrating diversity.


Iftar in the Synagogue 2010:

"Know Thy Neighbor"

     The Jewish Muslim Community Building Initiative (JMCBI) and Anshe Sholom Bnai Israel Congregation hosted a wall-to-wall coming-together of  Muslim and Jewish community members who gathered excitedly.
     Iftar in the Synagogue is a unique interfaith gathering during the Islamic holy month of Ramadhan and the Jewish month of Elul.
     The large crowd of youth and adults were reminded of the evening's organizing principles.
     "The Torah commands us to 'love thy neighbor,' and the Quran reminds us that 'We created youand made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other' in Surah Hujurat 49:13.
     "Throughout the night we will be reflecting on the theme, 'Know Thy Neighbor.'"

     THE EVENING PROGRAM looked like this:


5:30 pm - Community service activity

6:30 - Welcome

Rabbi Asher Lopatin

Anshe Sholom B'nai Israel Congregation

Mohamad Nasir

Executive Director, Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago

Katharine Nasielski

JMCBI Committee Member

Aqeela Jogee

Muslim Women's Alliance & JMCBI Committee Member

*  Jewish Evening Prayer

*  Muslim Break of Fast & Prayer Maghrib Salat

*  Communal Dinner (Kosher)

*  Film and Discussion

9:00 - Program conclusion


     Co-sponsors were the Jewish-Muslim Community Building Initiative (JMCBI), Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA), Council for Advancement of Muslim Professionals (CAMP), Muslim Women's Alliance and One Chicago, One Nation.
     WATCH the inspiring video:


Iftar in the Synagogue:

Muslims and sharing and learning together

by the Jewish-Muslim Community Building Initiative (JMCBI)

6-min video

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