Resources for Teachers and Students on Yaël Dayan

Prepare: Yaël Dayan served during three successive sittings of the Knesset, the Israeli parliament. The English version of her curriculum vitae can be found on the Knesset website.

Read: Yaël Dayan's Architects of Peace essay is excerpted from a speech she gave at the State of the World Forum. In it, she discusses following in the footsteps of such departed Middle Eastern leaders as Anwar Sadat, Yitzhak Rabin, and her father, Moshe Dayan, a former Defense Minister and Foreign Minister of Israel.

Explore: Yaël Dayan is a member of the Board of Directors of an organization called "Bat Shalom," which translates as "Daughters of Peace." It is a feminist organization comprised of both Israeli and Palestinian peace activists who work toward equal rights for Arab and Jewish citizens of Israel.

Write: In January of 1993, Yaël Dayan accepted an invitation to meet with PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat in Tunis. She became the first member of the Knesset ever to meet with him, and when she returned to Israel after three days of discussions, she was roundly condemned by the Israeli public, the press, and even her own political party. Some called her a traitor, others accused her of political self-promotion. Was Dayan right to confer with an enemy of her country? After researching news accounts of this event (you may have to use microfilm), write a three-to-five page opinion as to whether her actions were defensible in the service of peace.

Extend: Yaël Dayan has been an active participant in an organization called "Peace Now," Israel's oldest and largest peace movement. While Peace Now supports Israel's right to live within secure borders, it also recognizes the right of Palestinian self-determination. The Peace Now website contains a great deal of up-to-date material regarding Israeli/Palestinian peace efforts.

Additional Resource: Tel Aviv University's Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern Studies seeks to impart an understanding of Middle Eastern past and present to academic and general audiences.

Biography of Yaël Dayan