Needed Jewish Voices

Joel Bleifuss

In April, 14 major Jewish philanthropists wrote a letter to congressional leaders expressing their strong support for Bush’s “road map to peace,” which, they write, “provides Israel with a distinct opportunity to escape the bloody status quo.” By going public with their support, the letter’s signers (among whom are Edgar Bronfman, president of the World Jewish Congress, and current and past presidents of the United Jewish appeal and its successor organization, the United Jewish Communities) have for the first time given public notice that they do not support the hawkish stands of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Without mentioning either group by name, the writers “express our concern over recent efforts to sidetrack implementation of the ‘road map.’… As passionate supporters of Israel, we also know that the Jewish state needs this kind of energetic American diplomacy.”Letter signer Alan Solomont told the Washington Post, “Over the last two and a half years, there’s been just one organized voice that’s been heard from our community, and given the importance of trying to change the dynamic here, I’m pleased to hear another voice emerging.”

Joel Bleifuss, a former director of the Peace Studies Program at the University of Missouri-Columbia, is the editor & publisher of In These Times, where he has worked since October 1986.

Subscribe and Save 66%

Less than $1.67 an issue