You may have heard about No Sweat: A little apparel company aiming to make a big difference in the Middle East. Run by CEO Adam Neiman, No Sweat is more than just 100% union made apparel. In addition to creating sweatshop-free, organic and vegan products, Neiman is dedicated to creating jobs in Palestine. Unlike a lot of clothing manufacturers, No Sweat is upfront about their sources and production sites, such as the Arja Textiles factory in Bethlehem, Palestine. So, why did a Jewish guy from Boston want to source from a textile factory in Palestine? I'll let him tell you in his own words:
"While economic development is no substitute for a diplomatic settlement, no settlement can survive without a sustainable Palestinian economy. So while waiting for a diplomatic resolution, we have created a mechanism for ordinary citizens of good faith to build goodwill on the ground, and support the peace to come. The concept is simple. When faced with an apparently irresolvable conflict, if there is any one thing all parties agree on, do that one thing and see what happens."
Neiman's optimistic ideals and goals for No Sweat have garnered a lot of positive press over the past couple of years—they've even been the subject of an Al Jazeera profile. That said, No Sweat still needs major funding to pull off this experiment in entrepreneurial diplomacy properly. As Neiman put it, "Hamas has chosen guns. Abbas has bet on butter. If we don't provide Palestinians on the West Bank with butter—good private sector jobs NOW—Hamas and guns will certainly prevail."