We don't need to agree on everthing to work for peace and justice

Join us on Thursday August 8th in New Haven — August 7, 2019

Join us on Thursday August 8th in New Haven

NH Register OpEd August 7th
New Haven Register 8/7/19 by Bruce A. Barrett.
Summer is here! — July 1, 2019

Summer is here!


Dear Friends,

Summer is here!
Are you looking for inspiration?
Are you looking for peace of mind?
Are you looking for a family summer day of hope and fun?
Or are you looking for something, but you don’t know what it is?

Watch this video, and then sign up today to volunteer along side youth from the Jerusalem Peacebuilders Service Learning Program for an Interfaith Day of Service to be held on August 8th, on the New Haven Green.
If you are ready for a change, if you are ready for peace and goodness, then sign up today.
Visit IWagePeace.Org  for full details. Invite your youth groups, your family, and friends.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Interfaith Service Day Thursday, August 8th 2019 — June 7, 2019

Interfaith Service Day Thursday, August 8th 2019


Join visiting Jewish, Muslim and Christian youth from Israel and Palestine for an interfaith day of service. New Haven Green, Thursday August 8th, 2019 at 8:00 a.m.

Dear Friends,

Awaken the divine spark and join me, on August 8th, for a day of celebratory purpose, serving one another as peacemakers. I know it’s a Thursday, I know it may be hot, and some of you will have to take a day off from work. But we have pizza, we have good cheer, and the cause is a good one, worthy of a day away from our jobs. So join us, as Jews, Christians, and Muslims together.., and bring anyone else who cares to see how good it can be when all of us work together. We have numerous volunteer opportunities, young and old, everyone can help. Bring your youth groups, bring your children, meet our volunteers from Israel and Palestine, the Jerusalem Peacebuilders, and let’s have a good time on August 8th.

For complete details or to submit your individual or group registration please visit:


Yours in peace and friendship,

Bruce A. Barrett

Interfaith Volunteer Opportunities:

We will provide tools, water, and a pizza lunch. Volunteers should arrive wearing appropriate gloves, clothes, and shoes suited for their project.
Day of Service Itinerary:
8:00am Arrive on the New Haven Green where we will gather in diverse interfaith service project groups
8:30am Depart for service projects (Walk, or private bus/van transportation provided by IWagePeace
9:00am-12:00pm Enjoy interfaith dialogue as your group works together on their project
12:00pm Return to the New Haven Green
12:15pm Pizza Truck Lunch on the green Music (Festive)
12:45pm Press Conference and Photo Opportunities
1:00pm Habitat Volunteers will return to their project. Other project volunteers will relax and enjoy time together on the Green as the Peace Billboard Painting dries and preps for posting on I-95
3:30pm Habitat Volunteers complete their day

Service Day Advisory Board: Rabbi Brian Immerman, Congregation Mishkan Israel Hamden; Imam Omer Bajwa, Yale Chaplin; Father Stephen Holton, Christ Episcopal Church New Haven; Reverend Bonita Grubbs, Christian Community Action, New Haven; Bruce A. Barrett, IWagePeace.Org; Rev. Nicholas Porter, JerusalemPeacebuilders.Org.

Financial support is provided by Barrett Outdoor Communications, Inc. and IWagePeace, Inc. 


Painting For Peace on the New Haven Green — July 10, 2018

Painting For Peace on the New Haven Green

When: Today, Tuesday July 10th 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Where: The New Haven Green, CT
What: Hand painting a 14 foot by 48 foot mural “We Welcome Refugees”
Who: Visiting Israeli and Palestinian youth of Jerusalem Peacebuilder’s Leadership Program will join with youth form our local synagogues, mosques and churches; This is a public event and all are welcome.
Event Partners: Jerusalem Peacebuilders, IWagePeace, IRIS and Barrett Outdoor Communications

The 14 foot by 48 foot billboard mural is prepared and is ready to be hand painted by you today at 4:00 pm on the New Haven Green. Painting will begin at 4:00 pm and please try to arrive before 5:00 pm to hear remarks from the Office of the Mayor of New Haven, the Painting for Peace project partners, and teens from the Jerusalem Peacebuilders Youth Leadership group. We’ll see you there!

July 10th, Painting for Peace on the New Haven Green — June 29, 2018

July 10th, Painting for Peace on the New Haven Green

We Welcome Refugees Final rev 6-20_2

This will be fun!  Please join us on the New Haven Green, bring the family, and paint with us on July 10th , starting at 4:00 p.m. with youth from synagogues, mosques and churches in our local communities and thirty visiting Israeli and Palestinian youth as we hand paint this huge 14 foot by 48 foot Peace mural  entitled ” We Welcome Refugees”. This event is free to the general public: Everyone is welcome to “Paint for Peace.”

This collaborative is part of Jerusalem Peacebuilder’s ten-day Service-Learning Program, where visiting Israeli, Palestinian, and American youth are studying their faith traditions, exploring personal histories, and developing skills in leadership and peacebuilding while volunteering at local non-profit organizations in New Haven.  After the event, through a generous grant from Barrett Outdoor Communications, the hand painted mural will be posted at various billboard locations on the Connecticut highways.

Be sure to arrive before 5:00 so you can welcome New Haven Mayor Toni Harp and our special guests from Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services of New Haven.  (IRIS)

Painting for Peace — April 6, 2018

Painting for Peace


We are looking for a few good teens! (Ages 15-16)

On Tuesday, July 10th, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the New Haven Green, IWagePeace  and Jerusalem Peacebuilders will hand paint a  14 foot by 48 foot Peace Billboard on the theme “Welcoming the Stranger,” designed in collaboration with artistic director and muralist Russell Rainbolt.  After the event, through a generous grant from Barrett Outdoor Communications, the mural will be posted at various billboard locations on the Connecticut highways.

This collaborative is part of the Jerusalem Peacebuilders ten-day Service-Learning Program, where thirty (30) visiting Israeli, Palestinian, and American youth ages 15-16 will study their faith traditions, explore personal histories, and develop skills in leadership and peacebuilding while volunteering at local non-profit organizations in New Haven.  IWagePeace is seeking a total of thirty (30) local teens ages 15 to 16 to join them in hand painting the peace mural. Seeking diverse representation from our community, we hope for an equal number (6 to 10) of young men and young women from area Mosques (6 to 10), Synagogues (6-10), and Churches (6-10) for a combined total of thirty youth.

Attending teens must be sponsored by their local mosque, synagogue, church, or youth organization.  Sponsoring organizations are required to provide transportation to and from the New Haven Green and provide adult supervision for their participants throughout the event.

Space will be limited to thirty youth, so we encourage you to return this application as soon as possible.  The status of your application and/or confirmation of your group’s ability to participate will be returned to you no later than Monday May 28th, 2018.

In addition to the mural painting, there will be music, group games, and other activities for participating groups. We are in the planning stage for these ancillary activities and welcome your ideas.

If you require more details or have any questions or wish to help, please let us know. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

June 22,2017 Throwback Thursday — June 23, 2017

June 22,2017 Throwback Thursday

Power, Peacemaking, and Good Food

(October 2015)

At 4:30 p.m. Wednesday evening we lost power at my house.  Muhammad said “the oven is not on.”  He, Maya, and Suli had spent the entire afternoon cooking a Mediterranean feast for our fundraiser.   “Why spend hundreds of dollars on a caterer, when we can cook and they will taste something they never could have anywhere in the world but in Palestine and Israel?”  We purchased $132 of tomatoes, parsley, bulgur wheat, rice, two chickens, eggplant, onions, garlic, yogurt, potatoes, carrots, lettuce, oil, cauliflower, cucumber, squash, and tahini and away they cooked.

Combatants For Peace builds relationships by sharing meals and personal stories of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  Sulaiman, as a 14 year old living in the West Bank, became entrenched in violent responses to the occupation.  “At 14, you don’t think things through,” he explained.  “I was angry at what I saw and experienced with the occupation and I wanted revenge.”  From rock throwing to Molotov cocktails, he attacked Israeli soldiers with knives in an attempt to capture their weapons.   As a political prisoner, he learned the art of non-violent action, his last hunger strike lasting two weeks.  He found these coordinated non-violent actions improved prison conditions.  He studied Hebrew, English, world history, and Gandhi, Dr. King, and Nelson Mandela.  When he left prison, he was morally committed to nonviolence and one of a handful of Palestinians who reached out to meet Israeli soldiers and founded Combatants For Peace.  “It is obvious to anyone who wants to see it that there is no military solution to this problem, not for the Israelis and not for the Palestinians.”

Maya grew up in a kibbutz near the Galilee.  She grew up a liberal who believed in a two state solution, but she had never met a Palestinian and rarely questioned the policies of the occupation.  She served in the Israeli military and protected her people.  She met her first Palestinian while attending an olive harvest in the West Bank with Combatants For Peace.  “He was a nice gentleman, he introduced himself, and then he told me he distributed ice-cream in Jerusalem and I was so disturbed at meeting him that I had to get out of there; so I went to the bus and stayed in my seat for the rest of the event.”  She later attended another olive harvest and was shocked when settlers attacked them, brutally beating one of their members.   “It felt strange,” she recalled, “finding that the Israeli forces were not defending me, but were on the other side, throwing tear gas at us.  We were peacefully harvesting olives, nothing more.”  Last year Maya was the organizer of the alternative Memorial Day ceremony in Tel Aviv, a Combatants For Peace event open to the public and attended by five-thousand Arabs and Israelis gathering to remember the fallen from both sides of the conflict.

At my home, far away from the violence, we prepared our small fund raiser for the Combatants For Peace.  They, who bring Israelis to harvest olives with Palestinian farmers, they who bring Palestinians to meet Israelis without bringing their guns or searching them at check points, they who create peaceful protests against home demolitions and road blocks, they who use giant puppets and theatre in front of armed combatants, and they who change the dynamics of the conversation by bringing people to see and hear and act in creative ways beneficial to both sides: “It is not a zero sum game,” says Sulaiman Khatib.


At 5:40 p.m., my wonderful wife Therese and I put out some candles and the power was restored.  At 5:45 the first guests arrived.  We served small glasses of freshly brewed beer and cider courtesy of our renowned brewmaster Jeff Browning and our guests watched a 7 min film about the Combatants For Peace.  Moving upstairs, we enjoyed conversation and a seven course home cooked Middle Eastern buffet.  The food was extraordinary, over forty people were fed, we have pledged or received gifts in support of the Combatants for Peace work, and we grew a little bit closer to one another.

Thank you for supporting this wonderful event.  Thank you for changing the conversation and sharing your wealth, your hope, and your friendship with our friends, the peacemakers, Combatants For Peace.


Stand in Solidarity: US Satellite Events, The Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony April 30, 2017: — April 21, 2017

Stand in Solidarity: US Satellite Events, The Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony April 30, 2017:

Thousands of Israelis and Palestinians participate every year in this special event in Tel-Aviv produced and led by Combatants for Peace with the collaboration of the Parents Circle. Americans can mark this important day with them in their communities, by acknowledging the loss of life on both sides and to say that memorializing is not enough — we must act to end the circle of violence.

On Sunday, April 30th 2017, communities around the world will be holding satellite Memorial Day Ceremony events to stand in solidarity with Israelis and Palestinians who are seeking peace together.  Inquire or RSVP to attend an event in the US below:

New York City, NY

14th St. Y

344 E. 14th St., New York, NY 10003

April 30th at 6:30 PM EDT

Contact: Ilyssa Weingarden


Washington, D.C.

DC Jewish Community Center

1529 16th St. NW, Washington, DC 20036

April 30th at 6:00 PM EDT

Contact: Tali Herskowitz


Oakland, CA

First Congregational Church of Oakland (United Church of Christ)

2501 Harrison St., Oakland, CA 94612

April 30th at 6:00 PM PDT

Fort Collins, CO

Harmony Library

4616 S. Shields St., Fort Collins, CO 80526

April 30th at 12:15 PM MT

Contact: Elissa Tivona


Medford, MA (Tufts University)

Venue: TBD

April 30th at 7:30 PM EDT

Contact: Aviva Herr-Welber



Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day 2017 —

Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day 2017


This year, on April 30, 2017, Combatants for Peace will hold the Israeli-Palestinian memorial day for the 11th time. Each year the numbers grow as more and more Israelis and Palestinians leave despair behind and join together in an evening of remembrance and hope. The ceremony is funded entirely by donations. Please support them now with your donation and share news of this years ceremony with your friends.

The Combatants For Peace Joint Israeli Palestinian Memorial Day Ceremony — May 5, 2014