PROSPERITY IS KEY
PPI'S GOAL IS TO BRING IT THROUGH THE FOLLOWING GOALS:
Creation of the Cultural Peace Center in Jerusalem
The Cultural Peace Center will be the home of peace at the heart of the conflict, Jerusalem as the central node of the People's Peace. Too long has the challenge of ending conflict been in the hands of a political class too concerned with holding power, dogged by ulterior motives.
It is abundantly clear how fundamental quality education is to the enrichment of civilization. This means principles of life-long learning, opportunities for all and setting people on the path to self-actualization. The Cultural Peace Center will develop and facilitate 21st-century educational solutions. The people of the Middle East need to rediscover the beautiful and innovative spirit that created so many of the values that form the bedrock of humanity.
Thriving economies and high employment rates are vital for creating the comfortable atmosphere in which to embrace former enemies. Too many people have to struggle through life and when backs are against the wall it is only natural that blame is laid at the feet of those you are told are the culprits. The Cultural Peace Center will bring together entrepreneurs to work ceaselessly to raise the standard of living across the region.
Cultural and Economic Union
The ultimate goal of the Cultural Peace Center is to bring about a Cultural and Economic Union in the region. Embracing the economic peace philosophy, The Cultural Peace Center shall make a compelling case through the success of its projects for a united region embracing a common future.
"Nothing stops a bullet like a job"
- Father Gregory Boyle (Founder of Homeboys Industries)
The path to peace is entirely reliant on strong economic growth, on an individual and community basis. Economic success should not be viewed by the GDP of the nation alone, employment rates and purchasing power of the poor must be taken into account. In both Israel and the West Bank there has been significant economic growth in the last few years although relative improvements bare no real reflection to the huge disparity in the quality of life between Israelis and Palestinians. However, this isn't an exercise in comparison for doing so would be to exacerbate the sense of division that exists between the two peoples. Suffice to say that the goal is to improve the situation for the poor and the struggling regardless of a national title.
In the West Bank the economy has returned to healthy rates of growth reaching 8% in 2009, unemployment dropping and yet the rate of poverty remains at over 20%. The modern West Bank has expensive high rise apartments next to refugee camps. A real economic growth should be reflected by the improvements in the lives of those with little. Gaza had been in a fairly constant economic mire since the disengagement of 2005 but in 2010 the economy grew by 16% as new investments were made in for-profit recreational activities. Whilst, of course, it is positive that the economy has improved the percentage increase goes to show just how dire the economy was and some estimates of poverty are around 80%. For both the West Bank and Gaza, initiatives to fast-track the economies to OECD status are not only doable but imperative in order to create the balanced regional economic union that will benefit us all.
Israel has seen an economic boom over the last decade with world press focussing on the huge developments in the high tech sector and other industries. Israel is also a net lender and maintained growth throughout the recent global recession. However, there are still over 20% of the population under the poverty line and for many Israelis of all backgrounds, life is a struggle. Everyone would benefit from investments strategies that take into account the need to develop the economic prospects of the poor on all sides.