YaLa Academy Peace Institute in Honor of Nelson Mandela final project: Imagine what the MENA region would look like in 10 years, if peace was established today? How did it happen? What practices and institutions were put into place in order to establish this peace? Remember to draw on the skills we’ve learned from our lecturers throughout the semester. You can write a blog, make a video, write a song, create an infographic… Feel free to get creative!
By Marwa Belkhiria, Tunisia
Peace can be established in the region only in a favorable environment; first, by good leadership in one form or another. This step will provide a good example to follow and encourage people to not forget the history, but to have a lesson and not fall into the same trap again, because violence is has a snow ball effect. If you don’t supervise and have your precautions, you cannot control it anymore and it will backfire. The second step is to recognize others’ dignity – to listen, to communicate, and accept his identity no matter what. The third step is the will of reconciliation, the creation of a database documenting war crimes and publish it to avoid the evil power, to educate the new generations, to learn lessons from history, and to involve young people, because they are the most important part that can accept change, and understand that just because someone has a different religion doesn’t mean he is an enemy. We must forgive because forgiveness is the future. Involving the civil society to be a mediator between people and good governance is important. If we follow all of this, we can establish peace, and over the years we can find developed countries, not a breeding ground for illegal immigrants and terrorists.
Calling for peace from different sides is a very positive sign that war must stop as soon as possible. Starting from young people is the most efficient way. Creating meeting models for both sides to involve those young leaders in common goals and projects for peace in the region can be a way to force governments to change their politics and make a new vision for the MENA region.
Maybe after 10 years we can see Palestinians and Israelis, living side by side, or infused to one country in a peaceful way. Egypt may get rid of the military governance, Tunisia will be as powerful as any European country, Yemen will become a secure state, safety and economy wise, and Syria will be a peaceful and coherent country. Then we will never give Trump the chance to take advantage of the MENA’s situation to build his presidency with racist propaganda.
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