The Palestinian and Israeli conflict is often portrayed as an endless cycle of violence with each side blaming the other for its own violent response. However, people on both sides, as well as internationally, are working to address the real issues in the conflict. Hear the perspective of individuals who have lived in Palestine in “Human Rights in Palestine and Israel” open dialogue on Wednesday, Feb. 19 from 6-7 p.m. in the Ritz Auditorium in Old Main. This event is free and open to the public. After 7 p.m., the presenters and interested audience members will engage in an open dialogue.
Rick Polhamus, member of the Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT), and Hadil Alhayek, University of Findlay psychology and international studies major from Gaza, Palestine, will share about what it is like to live in Palestine and explore some of the human rights issues in the Palestinian and Israeli conflict. They will share their stories and illustrate what life is like living under the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the efforts of those who are working to bring peace to the region and instill hope in those who live there.
Polhamus, a member of the Church of the Brethren, has worked with CPT in Palestine and Israel for the past 20 years. He has also worked for the organization in South Dakota, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Iraq, and has served on CPT’s steering committee as its representative to the World Council of Churches. Additionally, he works for the Church of the Brethren on a national level through On Earth Peace (OEP), where he has participated in witnessing for peace, leading conflict transformation trainings for its Ministry of Reconciliation, and leading retreats and workshops as part of OEP’s Youth Peace Retreat Leadership Team.