Inspired by the Arab Peace Initiative, the Regional Organization for Peace, Economics & Security (ROPES) aims to revive momentum toward a historic Israeli-Palestinian peace accord by rallying a powerful regional coalition of rising stars in business, culture, and politics behind a 2030 vision of a new Middle East.
One key lesson from the past 30 years of Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking is that top-down political efforts and bottom-up grassroots ones cannot, on their own, end the conflict. At a time of political stalemate and popular disenchantment, reinforced by a daily drumbeat of negative news, many have lost hope. But at ROPES, we have pioneered a "middle-out" approach that has yet to be tested.
Our strategy is both bold and patient. We do not seek at first to sway public opinion or the current crop of leaders. Instead, over a multi-year process, we plan to build a Millennial-led alliance of influencers from across the region and work with them to create a viral vision for a new Middle East that we will unveil at an opportune moment. Our aim is to deliver a powerful shock to the system--a shock that upends the media narrative and gives young Israelis and Palestinians hope for a better future and a motivating peek beyond the horizon. By bringing all Arab nations into a larger alliance, meanwhile, we will expand the pie of peace benefits and reassurances for all sides while writing a new storyline that is large enough to cut through the noise of a saturated media.