Updates-A Story of Realistic Hope

Action Steps for Combatants for Peace

By Mubarak Awad

Thank you for accepting my invitation to be in conversation after the Combatants for Peace memorial event. This page lists several things you can do to help build a better future.

First, I want to ask you to feel free to be in touch with me with your ideas and suggested action steps. None of us have all the answers, but together our collective wisdom is strong. Please contact me here.

There are two books that can help guide us forward. Jonathan Kuttab wrote Beyond the Two-State Solution to spark a new conversation about the future of both our people and the region as a whole. I ask that you read this book, share it with others, and invite Jonathan to speak with groups you think would be interested in helping us break out of the unsustainable status-quo. Get your free copy here. 

Creative nonviolence is always evolving and growing. So we are launching Michael Beer’s new book along with an interactive database of nonviolent tactics. This database celebrates our collective wisdom and our capacity to come together - in the face of massive challenges - and find powerful nonviolent ways to protest and to help build the new emerging world. 

We know that effective nonviolence doesn’t just happen, but is enhanced by both knowledge of tactics and training. Please see our nonviolence training archive developed in partnership with Rutgers University International Institute for Peace

We hope you will be inspired by these books and our online tools. Please use these tools to come up with creative, constructive nonviolent actions and let us know what you are doing so we can spread the inspiration to others. 

If you believe, as I do, that the world needs to learn about the power of nonviolence, please consider helping us build the organization I founded and have given much of my life to - Nonviolence International. If you can make a gift to support this work, please do so here. 

Below, please see the full ceremony. I am introduced at 56:50. See also the video below featuring Sami Awad. 

Spotlight on Nonviolence - Azmera Hammouri-Davis

In this Spotlight on Nonviolence, Katherine Whiteside chats with Azmera Hammouri- Davis, a poet, scholar and activist. She is known for her curriculum Capoetics and her spoken word series Break the Boxes. In this episode, Azmera discusses how she was introduced to Capoetics and the impact it has had on her, the power of using art in all its forms for activism, and she shares a beautiful poem.



If you would like to find out more about Azmera’s work with Capoetics, see her videos on Break the Boxes, or check out Find the Keepers you can visit her website here. https://www.azmerarhymes.com/ You can also check out Freedom and other videos of her poetry on her YouTube channel 


A few years ago we were told that computer algorithms would serve us. Now we have learned that we serve them. So, we are compelled to ask you to “please like and subscribe” to our new YouTube channel so that others will be introduced to the work you already support. 


 

Celebrating NVI Intern’s Big Win!

By David Hart

NVI Intern Jules Slater Wins Prestigious Oration Competition

NVI is blessed with the volunteer leadership of three amazing interns. Those who follow our social media are starting to get to know Katherine Whiteside who is hosting our Spotlight on Nonviolence series on our new YouTube channel. Sam Lynch has been taking substantial leadership on a range of essential nonprofit management tasks. Working with each of them is a joy. Today, I'm thrilled to introduce you to Jules Slater who just won a 111 year old competition at their college.

Jules won with a powerful speech on what I consider the single most important topic of our time. What do we do with our anger about the state of the world? Can we find ways to allow ourselves to feel whatever we are feeling - pain, despair, hope, anger - and channel those emotions into effective action? Check out Jules' insightful and beautifully presented remarks starting 27 minutes in to the video below. And, for those interested see below the video for some of my thoughts on this topic. 


1st Place: Jules Slater ’21 - Advocacy Communication

The Bailey Oratorical stands as the oldest ongoing tradition of academic excellence at Juniata.

First Place: $1,000 and the name of the winner is inscribed on an antique Loving Cup.


Regular readers of this website may know of my love and respect for the great nonviolent activist and thinker Barbara Deming. Before coming across her writings, I had read and learned a great deal from Henry David Thoreau, Mohandas Gandhi, and Martin Luther King, but reading Deming as a kid spoke to me in a way beyond even those esteemed visionaries. 

Our successful webinar series is named We Are All Part of One Another after a line from Barbara Deming. See much more about her including fun links here

I was deeply moved watching Jules' speech. I have had the pleasure of working closely with them and learning together as we dive into many pressing NVI tasks. Jules created and has been updating our new webpage on Burma. So I knew Jules to be smart and could tell from their approach to their work that a deep love of people and planet guided their daily efforts. I didn't know that Jules was pondering some of the same issues I was as a young activist and still am today. Because I've grown to love and respect Jules, it was clear to me watching the competition that they should win, but I also knew I was deeply and understandably biased. I celebrated when the impartial judges agreed and Jules won first prize!

In a world as beautiful and broken as ours how can we not feel despair and anger? I remember that old bumpersticker that seems even more true now... If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention. For those who are brave enough to pay attention today, the painful reality is hard to grapple with. So we understand why so many close themselves off from the suffering - largely unnecessary suffering - all around us. Looking directly at the depth of the intersecting crises facing us is hard, but it is also essential to finding creative, constructive ways to address them and doing so with the fierce urgency they demand. Barbara Deming's essay On Anger spoke to me in deep and transformational ways and helped guide me forward to a lifetime of sustained activism. I hope Jules' remarks and Barbara's essay will be helpful to you as well. As she does with so many of her essays, Barbara says a great deal in a short piece. 

After watching Jules impressive speech above, please read Barbara's essay at: http://www.satyagrahafoundation.org/on-anger/

A few years later when I was in college I learned about the work of Joanna Macy. Her book Despair and Personal Power in the Nuclear Age inspired me to teach a course for credit for three semesters. Decades before I arrived at Oberlin college students had pushed through the Experimental College where - if you jump through the right faculty hoops - you can teach other students and they will earn college credit. Doing this three times with a different co-instructor each semester was a deeply meaningful experience for me and came directly out of Barbara and Joanna's work that is now being carried forward by Jules and many other brave young leaders ready to claim their future by facing the reality of the world today and finding ways to act together. 

I urge people interested in this kind of work to check out: joannamacy.net.  She suggests ways to face our fears and be moved to sustained loving activism. This approach has helped keep me going in this challenging and wonderful work for decades. 

Those of us not immersed in the Juniata community may miss a few references in Jules' speech, but the core messages are universal and are being felt by an ever increasing percentage of young people today. Jules asks if 2020 will be remembered as the angriest year ever. They express frustration at being told "this will not be tolerated here... when clearly it is." And, notes a core lesson we all benefit from meditating on regularly..."we are not alone."

We face serious challenges that we have foolishly allowed to go unaddressed for far too long. The intersecting crises are now forcing a great global awakening. The transition to a new and better world will not be easy and vast suffering that we could have avoided is already underway, but our capacity to claim our personal and collective power is directly impacted by our ability to face the reality of our situation. Jules and the other exceptional young leaders I get to work with through NVI give me hope that we may yet create the living loving revolution that has been needed for so long. Thank you Jules for your award winning speech, for all you do, and for giving me hope in hard times.


We are very curious what you think of all this. Jules and I have started talking about co-hosting a team meeting on this topic. Might not be a public webinar, but an internal gathering for those working closely with NVI and new friends interested in this part of our work. Please let us know if you might want to join us. 

 

 

 

 

Update on Jonathan Kuttab's Book

We are excited by the response to NVI's co-founder Jonathan Kuttab’s timely and important short book, Beyond The Two-State Solution.

We will be using this page to provide quick updates with all of you who share our deeply held values and want to put those values into effective action by helping to spread the word.

The latest wonderful review was published by Bruce Fisk. He uses both humor and scripture to make the case for why this book matters especially at this critical time. 

Please check it out and help spread the word. 


NVI had an internal meeting that gave our core team hope that we can achieve our stretch goal of changing the conversation around Israel / Palestine and by so doing having real-world impacts on policy and thus on people’s lives.

35 wonderful leaders each with networks of their own joined us to strategize about how we can leverage the power of Jonathan’s inspirational book. Those of us who have been watching this issue for years or decades are well aware that the conversation has been stuck for far too long. This has led to unnecessary and totally avoidable human suffering. We are committed to breaking out of this old tired pattern and are thrilled that our own co-founder has offered such a well thought out powerful booklet. 

Those who gathered on the call came up with a range of good ideas and even more importantly some key leaders made specific comments to carry this vital work forward. With the deep inspiration coming out of that meeting, we ask for your help with this effort. Please contact us to let us know how you’d like to be involved.

We are fully committed to your success and are creating a Toolkit to make this easy for you. 

We have:

1) A short promotional video already up on our YouTube channel.


2) A shareable social media graphic


3) Sample text for your promotional emails

Dear <First Name>,

Personalized introduction.

When it fits your busy schedule, I’d love to partner with you on getting our co-founder, Jonathan Kuttab, on a networking webinar. As you know, we are just getting started with the promotional effort for his timely and important new book.  

Learn more and get your free advance copy at https://www.nonviolenceinternational.net/beyond2states

Here is a bit about the book from the author: 

After decades of work promoting creative nonviolence, I am about to publish a book which I hope, with your help can address the current impasse, and perhaps change the conversation around Israel / Palestine. Many activists are frustrated, despondent, and floundering with no clear vision or direction. We need some fresh out-of-the-box thinking. This is true for Palestinians, Israelis, and our friends in the international community. I’ve asked Nonviolence International, a group I co-founded and value deeply, to lead the effort to get this book into the hands of people across the political spectrum and across the world. Even with everything else already in their established plans, the team is going above and beyond to ensure this book gets the attention we believe it deserves. 

Beyond The Two-State Solution is a short introduction to the current crisis in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism have been at loggerheads for over a century. Many thought the two-state solution would resolve the conflict between them. In this book, I explain why the two-state solution (that I supported) is no longer viable. I suggest that any solution must be predicated on the basic existential needs of the two parties. I formulate a way forward for a 1-state solution that challenges both Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism. This book invites readers to begin a new conversation based on reality: two peoples will need to live together in some sort of unified state. I have tried hard to make it balanced and accessible to neophytes and to experts alike.

Thanks again for your impressive leadership in building the network. Really inspirational to see this growing into a powerful global much-needed force. 

Be Well, 


4) Sample Twitter and Facebook posts

Twitter Posts

  1. Beyond The Two-State Solution, by Jonathan Kuttab, is a short introduction to the current crisis in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. This book invites readers to begin a new conversation based on reality: two peoples will need to live together in some sort of unified state. 
  2. In this book, Jonathan Kattab formulates a way forward for a 1-state solution that challenges both Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism. Download full PDF book: https://www.nonviolenceinternational.net/beyond2states

Facebook Posts

Beyond The Two-State Solution, by Jonathan Kuttab, is a short introduction to the current crisis in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. This book invites readers to begin a new conversation based on reality: two peoples will need to live together in some sort of unified state. Some thought the two-state solution would resolve the conflict between Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism. In Beyond The Two-State Solution, Jonathan explains that the two-state solution is no longer viable. Jonathan Kattab formulates a way forward for a 1-state solution that challenges both Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism.

Download the full PDF of the book now: https://www.nonviolenceinternational.net/beyond2states


Please let us know what else you need to be successful in joining our growing team promoting this important text. 

The book is available now on our website as a PDFEPUBMobi, or Print

We are proud to report that booklet is rolling out to many major online retailers in Kindle and ePub formats as well.

We expect a print version will be available no later than the first quarter of 2021. 

If you are inspired to support this work, consider making a donation or becoming one of our sustaining monthly donors.

Resisting Occupation: Connecting Palestine and Western Sahara - Webinar

Nonviolence International is proud to make connections across boundaries that for far too long we have allowed to divide us. We believe in the power of active nonviolence and offer this conversation as a way to celebrate the brave nonviolent leaders and our shared use of creative tactics and training to make us even more impactful. 

(Video above shows Sultana Khaya - while under heavy surveillance - joining our webinar through Salka Barca.)

This webinar was historic. This was one of the first times that we could hear Palestinian and Sahrawi voices share their experience of nonviolent resistance to occupation in Palestine and Western Sahara on the same panel. Israel and Morocco are in contravention of the UN charter through their military occupation and annexation of neighboring territories. Our Palestinian speakers, Mubarak Awad and Jonathan Kuttab have travelled to the Western Sahara and spoke about/on the parallels between the two occupations. Kuttab, a renowned international lawyer also discussed about the illegality of occupations and annexations and how these are a threat to world peace. Salka Marco talked about Sahrawi resistance to Moroccan occupation and human rights abuses. Kamal spoke to the need for solidarity with Palestinians and Sahrawis and how support for occupations and violation of human rights is damaging to the people of Morocco. Stephen Zunes provided an academic perspective outlining the similarities and connections between these two conflicts including the US government’s recognition of the Moroccan annexation in return for Morocco recognizing Israel.

Please Note: Mubarak would like to make a correction regarding the evacuation of a city by the Sahrawi people. During this discussion he said Moroccans left while it was the Sahwari people who held this amazing act of nonviolent resistance and would like to make this distinction to anyone watching to not cause confusion.

Time Stamps:

Rafif Jouejati - 0:00

Mubarak Awad - 5:40

Jonathan Kuttab - 14:30

Salka Barca - 20:00

Sultana Khaya - 22:40

Kamal Lfahsi - 32:30

Stephen Zunes - 42:10

Discussion - 52:00

Speakers:

Rafif Jouejati is a board member of Nonviolence International. She is the co-founder and director of the Foundation to Restore Equality and Education in Syria (FREE Syria), and the principal architect of the Syrian Freedom Charter project, which surveyed more than 50,000 Syrians on democratic aspirations and political transition. She is also a founding member of the Syrian Women’s Political Network, a member of the Board of Directors of The Day After, and President of the Board of Directors of Baytna. Rafif is the CEO of a company that helps client organizations evolve to higher levels of capacity and maturity through business development, targeted training, and strategic communication.

Mubarak Awad is a co-founder of Nonviolence International, an organization which promotes nonviolence worldwide. He was a leader in the 1st intifada in Palestine before he was deported by Israel to the United States. He visited Western Sahara in 2015 where he provided training in nonviolent struggle. He has a PhD in psychology, and also is the founder of a number of organizations that have focused on advocating and providing support for troubled and orphaned youth.

Jonathan Kuttab is a co-founder of Nonviolence International. Kuttab is a well-known international human rights attorney who is a member of the bar in Israel, Palestine, and the United States. He is the author of Beyond the Two-State Solution and many other publications. He is also a co-founder of the Palestinian human rights group Al-Haq and is President of the Board of Bethlehem Bible College. He has travelled to the occupied Western Sahara twice to provide training in human rights law and in nonviolent action.

Salka Barca is a nonviolence struggle advocate Born in Laayoune, the capital city of Western Sahara. She lived the first years of her childhood in the refugee camps, southwest Algeria. Obtained education in Tripoli, Libya and then Algeria. Barca was a literacy teacher in refugee camps. Furthermore, she was a member of the Saharawi women union.
Ms. Barca was the first Woman to advocate for Western Sahara nationally on immigration status in the United States. Worked with several organizations as an outreach for the Saharawi Cause, such as American Friends Service Committee and Sahara Fund; Ms. Barca is a linguist and a legal and medical interpreter/translator; an advocate for domestic-violence prevention. translated (50 crucial points for nonviolence struggle). Visited the occupied territories after 43 years in exile but was under surveillance of the
Moroccan police. co-founder of Karama Sahara, the first Non-governmental organization to include Moroccan human rights activists as honorary members.

Sultana Khaya is a Sahrawi woman human rights defender whose work focuses on promoting the right of self-determination for the Sahrawi people.. She is president of the organisation League for the Defense of Human Rights and against Plunder of Natural Resources in Boujdour. In the occupied territories, Sultana Khaya is a prominent figure on the frontline of the Moroccan occupation, participating in demonstrations and advocating for the end of the occupation and denouncing violence against Saharawi women. The woman human rights defender has travelled internationally to participate in conferences and other events relating to the human rights situation in Western Sahara and she has participated in the UN Human Rights Council twice.

Kamal Lfahsi is from Morocco and was born in 1971 in Morocco. He graduated from college in 1993 with a bachelor's degree in biology. At the same time, he became a leader among the National Union of the Students of Morocco. After graduating, Mr Lfahsi joined human rights activities and became the president of a local organization, the National Association of the Unemployed University Graduate in Morocco; later was arrested in 1999 for his role as a president and sentenced to 6 months in prison. 2000 Mr Lfahsi left Morocco to the United States and continued his education later and graduated from the Grove School of Engineering in New York City as environmental engineering. Currently, He is a Field utility Engineer and safety specialist of natural gas pipeline for a government agency in New York. Mr., Lfahsi is among many Moroccans who stands with the Saharawis in their plight of self-determination and a supporter of promoting human rights issues in Western Sahara and Morocco.

Stephen Zunes is a Professor of Politics and International Studies at the University of San Francisco, where he served as founding director of the program in Middle Eastern Studies. Zunes serves as a senior policy analyst for Foreign Policy in Focus project of the Institute for Policy Studies, an associate editor of Peace Review, and a contributing editor of Tikkun.
He is the author of hundreds of articles for scholarly and general readership on Middle Eastern politics, U.S. foreign policy, nonviolent action, and human rights. He is the principal editor of Nonviolent Social Movements (Blackwell Publishers, 1999), the author of the Tinderbox: U.S. Middle East Policy and the Roots of Terrorism (Common Courage Press, 2003) and co-author (with Jacob Mundy) of Western Sahara: War, Nationalism and Conflict Irresolution (Syracuse University Press, 2010).

Spotlight on Nonviolence - Huwaida Arraf

In this Spotlight on Nonviolence, Katherine Whiteside converses with Huwaida Arraf a Palestinian activist and lawyer who is the cofounder of the International Solidarity Movement and the Free Gaza Movement. Huwaida discusses how she became involved in activism, what caused her to develop the International Solidarity Movement and how others can get involved in this powerful and important movement.



Huwaida has done amazing work in globalizing Palestinian resistance by bringing citizens from around the world to Palestine and increasing global consciousness of the human rights violations that are being kept quiet. Through these movements she has creatively used nonviolent resistance to protest against the Israeli government. If you would like to find out more about the International Solidarity Movement or how to get involved you can find it here. https://palsolidarity.org/. Additionally, Huwaida as a founder of the Free Gaza Movement was aboard boats to Gaza that protested the inhumane Israeli blockade. To find out more about US boats to Gaza, an NVI partner, check out their page under the Our Partners tab on our website. 


A few years ago we were told that computer algorithms would serve us. Now we have learned that we serve them. So, we are compelled to ask you to “please like and subscribe” to our new YouTube channel so that others will be introduced to the work you already support. 


 

Explore Our Webinar Series: "We Are All Part of One Another"

Barbara Deming wrote the words that serve as the title of our webinar series, “We Are All Part of One Another.” Her prophetic words ring true today more than ever. 

The global pandemic has once again revealed how broken our system is. May it also remind us all of our shared humanity.

In this series, you will find stories of the amazing work being done by people all over the world, including our wonderful partners.  We trust you will find a reason for grounded realistic hope. Even in the midst of so many daunting challenges, people all over are building a powerful, diverse, global nonviolent movement. We are glad to be able to play a key role as a backbone organization of this global movement and to share this knowledge with you.

We will continue to host inspirational conversations of hope in this new world we have emerged into and announce them on this page.


Coming up: Wednesday, May 5th at 10:30am ET

NVI Book and Database Launch on Nonviolent Tactics

Register for this exciting discussion here.

 

Resisting Occupation: Connecting Palestine and Western Sahara 

 

This was one of the first times that we could hear Palestinian and Sahrawi voices share their experience of nonviolent resistance to occupation in Palestine and Western Sahara on the same panel.

 

Jonathan Kuttab's Booklet Launch: Beyond the Two-State Solution with co-founder of Nonviolence International and human rights attorney Jonathan Kuttab, Black-Palestinian poet Azmera Hammouri-Davis, human rights lawyer Robert Herbst, and feminist Jewish educator Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb. Hosted by Co-Director of Nonviolence International David Hart.

We are starting to roll out the short book, Beyond The Two-State Solution, by Jonathan Kuttab, and already we are thrilled with the overwhelmingly positive response we are getting. These days many of us are looking for hope in hard times. Jonathan gives us just that. Share the inspiration for a new and better world by watching this webinar.

Democracy Defense II: Global Activists' Advice for US Transition with Myanmarese youth advocate and activist Shunleiyi Thinzar, Gambian journalist and advocate Muhammed Bah, Serbian professor, and nonviolent organizer Ivan Marovic, and Chilean academic and political scientist Patricio Zamorano. Hosted by an incoming board member of NVI and director of FREE Syria Rafif Jouejati. 

International activists share critical lessons and advice for organizing after election wins ousting authoritarian leaders in divided societies. A vital topic in the current situation in the United States.

Democracy Defense: Advice from Activists Around the World with, Philippine professor and activist Joaquin Gonzalez, Serbian professor and nonviolent organizer Ivan Marovic, Gambian organizer and activist Muhammed Lamin Saidykhan, Brazilian organizer and activist Joana Varon, and American professor, and author Stephen Zunes. Hosted by author and activist Maria J. Stephan.

Is U.S. democracy staring at its own grave? Might we need to protect election results against a militarized, white supremacist effort to stop a full vote count? Are Americans up against something unlike anything they’ve experienced in our lifetime? We’ve organized a panel of global anti-coup experts to advise Americans on their strategy for the months or years ahead.

Nonviolent Activism in the Islamic World in a Time of Islamophobia with Thai professor and activist Chaiwat Satha-Anand, Sudanese social justice activist, researcher, and feminist Hala Al-Karib, Kashmiri writer-activist Mushtaq Ul-Haq Ahmad Sikandar, and Lebanese-American scholar and former Director of NVI's Islam and Peace program, Karim Crow. Hosted by Nonviolence International board member and American University professor Mohammed Abu-Nimer.

In a time of substantial Islamaphobia across the world, Nonviolence International hosts experts in the field of Islam and nonviolent activism. They discuss the rich diversity of nonviolent resistance and activism in Thailand, Kashmir, Sudan, Palestine, and other Muslim states and communities. 

People Power and Democracy in Sudan with Anthony A. Haggar from the Haggar Group, Sudanese civil society activist Asma Ismail Ahmed, Sudanese-American journalist and human rights activist Jalelah Sophia Ahmed, and progressive leader US Representative Pramila Jayapal. Hosted by Executive Director of Nonviolence International Michael Beer.

Watch a discussion about the country's nonviolent revolution and the current situation facing the Sudanese people and their government. Sudanese professionals, civil society activists, and journalists will share their hopes and plans for Sudan's future and articulate ways in which the international community, and specifically the USA, can help.

Co-Resistance and Solidarity with Palestinians with Elias D'eis and Said Durzi Zarar of the Holy Land Trust as well as Scout Bratt and Clare Jordan of the Center for Jewish Nonviolence. Hosted by new NVI board member Mohammed Abu-Nimer.

Observe our impressive partners, Holy Land Trust and Center for Jewish Nonviolence, lead the way to a model of grassroots co-resistance and solidarity that has the power to transform our beautiful and broken world. 

Nonviolent Resistance to Nuclear Weapons and War with Patrick O’Neill and Martha Hennessy of the Plowshares Movement, Alyn Ware of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament, Mani Shankar Aiyar of the Indian National Congress Party, and Divina Maloum of Children for Peace. Hosted by Paul Magno.

Listen to our discussion of important nonviolent campaigns that seek to eliminate the risk of nuclear conflict, hear the stories of inspiring actions that activists have undergone, and learn more about the role global citizens can take.  

Creative Nonviolent Action for Palestine During COVID-19 with Alex McDonald of the US Boats to Gaza, Raed Shakshak of We Are Not Numbers, and Roshan Dadoo of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, South Africa. Hosted by NVI founders Mubarak Awad and Jonathan Kuttab.

Witness some of our partners and friends address the situation in Palestine in light of the COVID-19 outbreak. We will also discuss important campaigns that promote nonviolence in the Levant, with a specific focus on the Gaza Strip, during the pandemic.
Women Fighting for Our Planet (Climate Change Activism) with Phyllis Omido from Kenya, Kehkashan Basu of the United Arab Emirates, Tamara Lorincz from Canada, Juhee Lee from Korea, Raeesah Noor-Mahomed from South Africa, and hosted by Dr. Maia Hallward Learn about the global ecological movement to discuss important campaigns that help promote effective action on the climate crisis.

Nonviolent Responses to Militarism and COVID-19 with Medea Benjamin of CODEPINK, Jan Jaap van Oosterzee of PAX, & Carina Solmirano of Control Arms

 Discover campaigns that will make a difference promoting a more nonviolent world during the pandemic and provide a counternarrative to the increasing militarism around the world.

Nonviolence in this Beautiful and Broken World with Nadine Bloch of Beautiful Trouble, Chelsea Byers of the Campaign to Abolish Statutes of Limitations, & Phil Wilmot of Solidarity Uganda

Find out about some of the new creative tactics of resistance activists have been using during this time of crisis.
Nonviolence in Palestine with Sami Awad of Holy Land Trust Listen to Sami Awad discuss the role nonviolence has in the struggle of the Palestinian people, as well as hear updates about the situation on the ground during this time of the pandemic. 
Nonviolence in a Time of Crisis with Mubarak Awad Hear Mubarak Awad, the founder of Nonviolence International, share his warmth and wisdom and tell how he got his start in nonviolence resistance. 


We don’t know what the future will hold, but we believe that nonviolence is a force more powerful. And, we know nonviolence is both an effective tool to create real and lasting social change as well as a way of life for many of us.


We urge you to reach out to us and to your friends, family, and community. We must not allow the medically necessary social distancing to limit our equally necessary need to connect with other people. At this moment, we must rise up as one and declare that a new and better world is possible.

The forces of the status quo, from governments to corporations to far too many leaders, have once again been proven to be cruel and heartless. How many canaries in the coal mine do we need before we wake up and create a path - a bold and beautiful path - out of this darkness?

May you stay safe and healthy and may your life be a blessing to others.

The Many Faces of Nonviolence - Micro Action Movement

Written by David Hart

Nonviolence International Welcomes Micro Action Movement

We are thrilled to welcome our latest fiscally sponsored partner - Micro Action Movement. 

I am particularly excited about this collaboration because many people I speak to these days are overwhelmed by the state of the world. The problems we face can seem so massive (because they are) and more and more people are coming to see they are deeply interconnected and we will not be able to solve anyone of them without making progress on all of them. 

Understandably this reality can freeze people in fear rather than inspire them to take effective action. This wonderful project breaks through that challenging barrier by showing us all small and meaningful steps we can each take that together can have a massive impact. And, they brilliantly encourage people to find ways to creatively collaborate across borders we have allowed for far too long to divide us. 

Nonviolence International is providing fiscal sponsorship for this project in the US and around the world, but it is already underway in Sweden. Back in the before times when we worked in the office and had guests, Stellan Vinthagen wrote saying he was coming to town and asked to meet with Michael Beer. Michael was heading on a trip, but kindly asked if I'd like to host Stellan. I was pleased to do so having read his brilliant academic writings that take activism seriously. Then when he arrived he was so kind and gave time not just to me, but to the exceptional young leaders interning with us. We covered many topics including his emerging focus on Everyday Resistance. We didn't know where this conversation might lead, but closed with the hope that we might find ways to collaborate in the future. See more on his work and a short video below.

Now as we get to work together, I've had the pleasure of starting to get to know the true driving force behind this project Rebecca Vinthagen, Stellan's sister. She is a trained political and gender scientist and has extensive experience as a workshop and process leader. She lectures and educates in issues around norm criticism, organizational development, leadership and norm-critical design. She is also trained in Nonviolent communication and working with her is a joy. 

Together with a strong team they are bringing their app beyond its successful launch in Sweden. Please consider celebrating them joining the NVI family by making a generous donation now. Or how about becoming one of their first monthly sustaining donors? Or tell a friend that you were pleased to learn about them, or download the app and get started taking creative action now. Whatever you do, we hope that directly after you read these words you will take some small action... maybe even a micro action. Join the nonviolent creative fun-loving movement and help build a better world. 

Donate to Micro Action Movement here. 

For more info please visit https://microactionmovement.com/

Get the free app by clicking on the images below. 
          

Stellan Vinthagen is a scholar and activist. A professor of Sociology, and the Inaugural Endowed Chair in the Study of Nonviolent Direct Action and Civil Resistance at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He is Editor of the Journal of Resistance Studies, and Co-Leader of the Resistance Studies Group at University of Gothenburg, in his native Sweden. With a deep dedication to conflict transformation and civil disobedience, he has authored and edited numerous books, putting out his latest A Theory of Nonviolent Action – How Civil Resistance Works. Follow Stellan on Twitter - https://twitter.com/svinthagen​

Here is great conversation he had with Kelly Quinn for our Spotlight on Nonviolence series. 

People Power in Burma/Myanmar Close to Reversing Coup D'etat

Nonviolence International is participating in a global effort providing training and educational materials in support of the Burmese struggle for democracy. Michael Beer, NVI's Director has recently provided training to Chin minorities in strategic nonviolent struggle.  NVI has also helped facilitate the translation of many useful guides and materials on nonviolence.  NVI Canada Board member, Yeshua Moser-Puouangsuwan recently released an article in which he investigated the origin and transfer of Italian shotgun shells to Myanmar that were used to attack an ambulance. NVI has also signed on to a letter in solidarity with trade unions in Burma.

All supporters of democracy are encourage to use nonviolent boycotts towards the Myanmar military. In the US, efforts to pass targeted sanction legislation can be encouraged. Recent defections by Myanmar diplomats in New York, London, Geneva, and Washington DC have lifted up hopes for the Burmese people. Please contact diplomats in your country and invite them to stand by the people of Myanmar.


Update: Watch NVI’s Director Michael Beer in an interview with student activist Me Me Khant.

The two discuss ideas on nonviolence and nonviolent action as it relates to the current struggle in Myanmar/Burma.

 

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Background:

For 3 decades, Michael Beer, Mubarak Awad and NVI staff have met people from all over Myanmar who have suffered unspeakable crimes of torture, imprisonment, rape, and displacement by the Burma/Myanmar military. Ethnic minorities such as the Rohingya, Karen, Kachin, Shan, and Chin have been particularly brutalized.

People around the world are sickened by the sexist coup d’etat. Despite having enormous power, they were not satisfied with sharing power with a woman, Aung San Suu Kyi, whose political party won 83% of the seats in November.

Understandably, the people of Myanmar are resisting the military coup d’etat on an enormous scale. Government doctors are going on strike. Myanmar citizens have been responding every night by engaging in a mass nonviolent tactic of caceleroza which involves the banging of pots and pans. Many governments, including Southeast Asian nations, are protesting. Ethnic minorities are united in opposition. World-wide, citizens are planning to re-launch global boycotts. This coup will not succeed if enough pressure can be brought upon the coup plotters. Join NVI in supporting the people in Burma to challenge patriarchal and military rule.

Nonviolent resistance brought about an end to absolute military rule in Myanmar in 2008. Much progress has been made in the last generation in terms of freedom of speech and assembly, free elections, a huge improvement in the rights of women, labor unions, some ethnic minorities and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people. This progress will not easily be reversed because the people of Myanmar will bravely defend these gains. Nonviolence International supports calls from Myanmar civil society in calling on all governments to impose targeted sanctions on the Myanmar military.


Read: NVI Director Michael Beer quoted in this recent article in The Progressive.

Listen: "The Backlash Against the Military Coup from Brave Citizens in Myanmar"- Michael Beer featured on Background Briefing with Ian Masters


Nonviolence International invites everyone to take these important actions:

Here is a link to a letter we co-signed. It asks apparel brands sourcing from Myanmar to ensure protection of worker's rights

Tell luxury jeweler Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewelry with Burmese #GenocideGems.

Demand Facebook remove all Myanmar military accounts from its platform.


For more information, see also:

https://burmacampaign.org.uk/ (British and global)
Good place for information. https://www.altsean.org/ (ASEAN focussed)

Michael Beer, Director of Nonviolence International, trained hundreds of people and guerrillas from Myanmar in nonviolent action and strategy in the 1990's. Co-trainers at various times included Gene Sharp, Bob Helvey, Eric Garcetti, and George Lakey. He is the author of Violent and Nonviolent Struggle in Burma: Is a Unified Strategy Workable, in Nonviolent Social Movements: A Geographical Perspective, Edited by Stephen Zunes, Lester R. Kurtz and Sarah Beth Asher, Blackwell Publishing, 1999. He has trained people in many countries and is the founder of NVI's Tactics Database and (in partnership with Rutgers University) our NV Training Archives, and author of forthcoming book on Civil Resistance Tactics of the 21st Century. 

Michael taught nonviolent resistance to Burmese beginning in 1990 with George Lakey and then with Col Bob Helvey and Gene Sharp in 1992. He helped train more than 1000 guerrillas and civilians in NV struggle over 10 years. He organized some of the first Burmese solidarity efforts in the US beginning in 1990. Currently re-engaging with Burmese activists and provided trainings this week to Burmese inside on nonviolent resistance. 

 

Please click here to read the history of Nonviolent Struggle In Burma/Myanmar.

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Spotlight on Nonviolence - Katherine's Introduction

Hello Everyone! My name is Katherine Whiteside and I will be joining Kelly on the Spotlight Series Project as an Intern at Nonviolence International this spring semester. In this video, I explain why I decided to Intern at Nonviolence International and a little bit about my background. I am so excited to converse with and learn from Nonviolent leaders through the Spotlight series.



A few years ago we were told that computer algorithms would serve us. Now we have learned that we serve them. So, we are compelled to ask you to “please like and subscribe” to our new YouTube channel so that others will be introduced to the work you already support.


 

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