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Friday 24 August 2012, by Yaacov Sonnenschein

WAS-NS member Yaacov Sonnenschein on Ahmad Hijazi
We were in a bus in the Eighth Avenue New York when Nava’s phone rang and Eyas sounds crying on the phone. That was the way we received the bitter news.

Nava had two partners. Me , her life partner, and Ahmad her professional partner . (it is very difficult to say that in the past tense). Since he was age 16 they were following a common way, first when Ahmad took part in a youth meeting, and was in service year , then they facilitated and developed jointly projects through two decades and recently when Ahmed was the director of the school for peace.

Over the years, some of us were active in this or that aspect of Wahat al Salam/Neve Shalom in the development of the community, the community management, fundraising, and various educational activities. Ahmad was among the few who were involved in all: He served as the ``mayor" of the village, was the coordinator of foreign relations, facilitator and director in recent years of the school for peace, for many years a member of the Community Council and later a member of the Association Committee and a host of other activities.

Quite a few years, we took part side by side, both in Secretariat and the Association. Ahmed was very knowledgeable and involved in: budget matters, representation of employees, organizational change, policies, accepting new members, the expansion program and that just a partial list . A typical picture of him in the meetings was a multi-tasking one: examining matters on his personal computer while at the same time offers, comments, arguing and asking about the topic discussed .

For many years I observed Ahmad directly, and saw his reflection through what I have heard from Nava. The interference between these two images was constructive, and created a hologram image in which the third dimension is a dimension of positivity, joy of life, involvement, initiative and execution.

Disappointment and frustration are often the feelings of those involved in the effort and struggle for peace, equality and coexistence. If anyone signified the opposite of hope and optimism it has been (again hard in the past) Ahmad. Yes just like that. Contrary to other activists Ahmad did not broadcast disappointment, grunt, frustration and hostility, but rather he has been a `` yes we can" person, was involved in diverse activities in various organizations, he shined affection, warmth and hope.

Recent images : I remember you Ahmed passing in the general Assembly the decision to establish an association for the Peace College, presents Yitzhak Saporta and asks Dan Meridor in the course for up and coming politicians, puts the new furniture in the peace library, watching European soccer championship in the pool, attending along with Isam and Adam performance of Madonna and brings additional plant to the garden that you have cultivated around the Peace School
Ahmad, will do our best to follow your heritage and the path you have paved. You will be in our hurt forever.

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