Post 1: Nonviolence International

Hi everyone! My name is Zosia Busé, and I am a rising junior at Brandeis. This summer, I am working for Nonviolence International (NI), a non-profit organization based in Washington D.C. The D.C. office is considered the headquarters of the organization, but they consider themselves “a decentralized network” so there are small satellite offices all over the world. There is also an office in New York City that works directly with the United Nations on disarmament, as NI is a non-governmental organization in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. At its core, Nonviolence International is an organization dedicated to the principles and practices of nonviolence and nonviolent action. What is nonviolence and nonviolent action, you may ask? Check out this link to learn more!

NI’s initiatives manifests in a variety of ways. The beauty of NI’s decentralized nature is that NI supports coexistence efforts in conflict-ridden areas all over the world. In the few weeks that I’ve been here, I’ve learned so much about the different aspects of the conflict resolution process, and how principles apply to real life scenarios. NI supports nonviolent action programs in countries such as North/South Korea, Ukraine, Thailand, and Palestine/Israel.  On a grand scale, Nonviolence International seeks to address the vast injustices of war and conflict. But as we all know, there are a variety of injustices that occur within the context of war and violence, such as poverty and human rights violations.

Protesting outside of Senator Mitch McConnell’s office!

This summer, I am serving as the lead intern for the Palestinian projects, which I could not be more excited about (especially in light of current events). In this capacity, I have started working on research about the application of nonviolent action and mediation, but I will also be working as a liaison and as programmatic support for nonprofit organizations such as the Holy Land Trust, Center for Jewish Nonviolence, #FreedomFlotilla, and many more. This link will give you an indication of some of the cool stuff I get to work on. (This page will lead you to more links to learn more about all the different groups!) Many of these projects have different tasks that come up daily, mostly related to research, updating social media, editing websites, and administrative assignments.

Additionally, NI tries to support any active organizing efforts in D.C. For the interns, that means heading out to protests, teach-ins, demonstrations, or anything that comes up! On my third day on the job, we went to the Russell State Building with Reverend Barber’s Poor People’s Campaign, protesting “The War Economy: Militarism and the Proliferation of Gun Violence.” We ended the rally at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office by dropping white carnations to represent lives lost to violence.

I hope that my work in supporting NI’s projects in Palestine will help to create more awareness for the entire situation on both sides, and hopefully work towards humanizing the victims of the violence. I know I won’t solve the conflict from D.C. in a few short months, but I hope my role will work towards the ultimate goal of coexistence between Palestine and Israel.

Looking forward to the rest of the summer!
-Zosia Busé