What You Need to Know About Playing the Israeli Peace Camp

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-- You have no military power and you are of the minority political bloc, but in the most recent election there were signs that the Israeli center (Herzog and Livni headed the “Zionist Union” bloc) is gaining some political strength. You must work hard to distinguish your stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from that of Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Likud bloc, while carefully avoiding being seen as insufficiently security conscious. Work to craft stances and public statements that will force Netanyahu's government to respond and that will hopefully put the Prime Minister on the defensive.

--You should be aware of the fact that Prime Minister Netanyahu is much more popular in Israel than he is outside of it. The leaders of many of Israel’s allied nations (including President Obama and President Hollande of France) are known to have little use for Netanyahu personally. Though Mr. Herzog isn’t well known internationally, Livni and Ayalon are, and all three of you should be using your relationships and reputations in private communication to help persuade others to support you. Could the allegiance of your team members be used by others as leverage, so as to help push the government to act differently (and gain influence and visibility for the Peace Camp?) Consider how your presence, and your public statements, could be "used" by other nations whose support you are seeking.

--Many of Israel’s western allies would love to see a change in Israeli leadership, and you can and should use this fact to your advantage. Use the media to make your case that, for example, Israel’s security could be conceptualized in ways other than Prime Minister Netanyahu’s “Fortress Israel” vision, dominated by border walls and the like. All three members of your teams are known to have good working relationships with Palestinian political and military leaders...how can you use these relationships? What favors might you be able to call in?

--It is true that you have neither military might nor economic heft, but you have moral suasion in large supply. Liberally use the media to make your case, both to persuade Israel’s allies to stand with you, and to support your alternative vision. Think about how your team members might orient their effort to setting themselves apart--in the media and in strategic negotiations--from the government, and potentially engaging in a kind of public shaming of the government?

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