Dagmar Kusa is a native of Slovakia, where she received her M.A. in political science from the Comenius University and worked at the Slovak Helsinki Committee for human rights as a Project Coordinator. She has received Ph.D. in political science from the Boston University in 2009. From 2005-2008, Dagmar was the Program Coordinator at the International Center for Conciliation and remains affiliated with the Center as the Senior Fellow. Focus of her work and study is historical memory in political use and in conflict resolution and post-conflict conciliation. At the Center, Dagmar has contributed towards the development of methodology of "historical conciliation", working with groups in conflict through narrative approaches. She has led workshops in India, Cambodia, Europe and the U.S. In 2008-2009 she was the Project Manager at Euroclio, The European Association of History Education. From July 2009 she is teaching at the Bratislava International School of Liberal Arts.
Why I want peace:
We have one life to live and it can be truly fulfilling only if we take responsibility for the social world around us.
A True Story By Faisal Al-kateep
I am a Palestinian Arab from Hizmeh, a village between Jerusalem and Ramallah. When I was 15 years old I fought against the Israeli Occupation in search of freedom. At that time I thought every Jewish person, whether soldier or citizen, man or woman, young or old, should be killed. I rejected the right for any Jew to live and every Jew was a target. I was just a kid, believe me, and I didn’t understand anything about politics or the Arab-Israeli conflict. I was arrested and sat in jail for 12 years. This was during the first intifada from 1987. At that time nobody talked about peace but only of violence. I matured during my time in jail. I started studying and reading books on politics, literature, poetry, and about the Madrid Conference.
It gave me hope to live in peace and dignity. I learned that violence only breeds violence and that peace is the only solution for the two nations, the only way for both to have a respectful and beautiful future. We live on the same land. We are neighbors. We drink the same water and both pray to a monotheistic God. We must live in peace on the basis of religion for God and land for everyone.