Peace Now - Early Activism

Early Activism

Peace Now again came to prominence following Israel's 1982 Invasion of Lebanon, and in particular the massacre of Palestinian refugees by Christian Lebanese Phalangists at the Israeli controlled Sabra and Shatila refugee camps. On 25 September 1982 Peace Now held a mass protest in Tel Aviv on 25 September 1982 in order to pressure the government to establish a national inquiry commission to investigate the massacres, as well as calling for the resignation of the Defence Minister Ariel Sharon. Peace Now's 1982 demonstration was attended by 400,000 people, approximately 10% of Israel's population at the time.

Subsequently the Israeli government established the Kahan Commission on 28 September 1982. Four months later the commission found Israel to be indirectly responsible for the massacres, and recommended Ariel Sharon's resignation.

Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin at first refused to adopt the Kahan Commission's recommendations. Consequently Peace Now decided to hold a demonstration on 10 February 1983 that marched from Zion Square towards the Prime Minister's residence in Jerusalem in order to pressure the government to do so.

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