Two study tours, grounded in ICAHD analysis, were facilitated in March with participants joining from the UK and the US. Later when asked what was most memorable about tour, R Jaber who was in the second group responded:
This is difficult to answer because so much of the tour was memorable! I think being on the ground and meeting with locals, hearing and seeing their stories (especially in Hebron), really resonated with me. Visiting Claire Anastasis in Bethlehem and learning more about the Wall overall is something I will never forget. I learned so much about its significance and its effect on the people and its symbol of apartheid that I can never unlearn that. Visiting the refugee camp and watching their film about Israeli army incursions into the camp is engrained in my memory. Witnessing the mistreatment of our host in Hebron at that checkpoint solidified the reality of the mistreatment of Palestinians. And then the shock I experienced being in occupied territory versus in the state of Israel and observing the noticeable differences in resources, access, movement, etc. My empathy has significantly grown for the Palestinian people.
But if I had to select one very POSITIVE memory from the tour, I would have to choose our last night in Bethlehem, out to dinner as a group and forming bonds with colleagues from all over. As each day passed, I felt myself growing closer and closer to these new people I met who share the same love for humanity. The compassion, respect and unity of the group ignited hope in me for the future of Palestine. Everyone was so supportive and sincere. Debriefing as a group each night really helped to increase that bond as well as we processed our shared experiences.
No two tour itineraries are the same because we seek to respond to unfolding developments on the ground and we always cover a range of issues on both sides of the divide. Click here for more information about the autumn study tour, 5 – 15 November 2018.