Ali Abu Awwad and Rabbi Schlesinger reach across the Israeli and Palestinian divide through transformational dialogue.
Ali Abu Awwad
Ali is a leading Palestinian activist tirelessly teaching the life-changing power of nonviolent resistance and reaching out to Jewish Israelis at the heart of the conflict. He is currently finishing his memoir called Painful Hope, an account of his experiences, strategy, and vision for the Palestinian future. In addition to being one of the founders of Roots/Shorashim/Judur, he was recently instrumental in the founding of Taghyeer (Change): The Palestinian National Movement for Nonviolent Resistance.
Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger
Rav Hanan is an Orthodox rabbi, teacher, and passionate Zionist settler who has been profoundly transformed by his friendship with Ali and with other Palestinians. His understanding of the reality of the Middle East conflict and of Zionism has been utterly complicated by the parallel universe that Ali and others have introduced him to.
Originally hailing from New York, Rav Hanan made aliya (ascended to the Land of Israel) on his own at the age of 20 and has lived over the green line, in Alon Shvut, Gush Etzion, for over 30 years. His family background is Reform, but already at the end of high school he began delving into observant Judaism. He has spent over 10 years learning in Israeli Talmudic seminaries and also studied towards a MA in Jewish Philosophy at Hebrew University. His professional career has been dedicated to teaching Jewish studies in various colleges and seminaries in the Jerusalem area, and well as in different frameworks in Florida and Texas.