The Aspen Institute’s Middle East Strategy Group in partnership with the Embassy of Switzerland to the United States convened a day of discussion on the new thinking and action needed to advance peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors.
Speakers included: Ambassador Hussein Hassouna, Ambassador of the League of Arab States to the U.S., Ambassador Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al-Hussein, Ambassador of Jordan to the U.S
Sundeep Waslekar; Stategic Foresight Group, Ami Ayalon; Former Minister and Member of Knesset, Yosi Beilin; Former Minister and Member of Knesset, Yasser Abed Rabbo; Advisor to the Palestinian President, Jamal Zakout; Advisor to PM Salam Fayyad and Geneva Initiative Board Member, and many more.
With a new administration in the United States, a new government in Israel, and the aftermath of the war in Gaza, it is time for a renewed engagement in the Middle East peace process; time to bring new thinking and new ideas. Considering past experience and the present situation, the discussion began by focusing on understanding the new parameters, the key elements and the current challenges which must be confronted in creating a new dynamic and renewed commitment to the peace process.
Together with political effort, practical tools and solutions are available to us and should be implemented to create both leadership and grass-roots preparedness for peace. We used this meeting as an opportunity to explore tools, blueprints and new thinking around water initiatives, private-public partnerships, and much more. Lastly, since the Arab Peace Initiative was first announced, it has failed to gain traction and forward momentum. Our concluding panel discussed the regional context of the Arab Peace Initiative and what can be done to realize and implement it.