If you build the foundations of peace . . . will it come?
This fascinating question lies at the heart of ‘STATE 194‘, a vital and revealing look deep inside Israel and Palestine at the men and women trying to seize an historic opportunity to end the conflict and make implementing the two-state solution a reality right now. From the halls of power, across youthful social networks and on the streets, it is a remarkable story of those who are attempting to transform an endangered thread of hope into something tangible.
‘STATE 194‘ will open in New York and Los Angeles theaters on Friday, May 17, 2013
This journey-still-in-progress begins with Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, who in 2009 launched a daring campaign to change his people’s destiny. For decades, acts of war and terror, political wrangling and diplomacy have failed to solve the territorial disputes of the region; settle the questions of Palestinian independence and Israeli security; or halt ongoing violence. But Fayyad envisioned a different approach. Taking his surprising inspiration from the Israeli battle for U.N. recognition in 1948 – which centered on building the bedrock of civil society to demonstrate their readiness to be a nation — he forged an ambitious 2-year plan to pave roads, raise schools and fast-track creating the core institutions of governance across the West Bank. Fayyad decided even if statehood was stalled, progress didn’t have to be. The plan achieved rapid and dramatic improvements in key development areas, leading President Mahmoud Abbas to take a different risk: presenting the case to the United Nations that Palestine was ready to become the 194th member nation.