A cool focus during the summer's political heat

August 21st, 2009

Washington may be emptying out, but J Street's office is buzzing as we prep for the fall's big events - not just our Conference (register here if you haven't yet) but also anticipation that President Obama is set to announce a resumption of Israeli-Palestinian talks in the next few weeks.

To show support for the President, our August Action Challenge is in full swing, with an ambitious goal of 50,000 actions in support of a strong push for a two-state solution.

As part of the Challenge, we launched www.ObamaSmearBusters.com, a "go to" resource for debunking vile smears against the President and his Mideast policy - providing the tools you need to fight fear-mongering and lies with facts. We're just 21,413 actions away from hitting our August Action Challenge goal - and we need your help to cross the finish line.  Will you take a minute to share ObamaSmearBusters.com with your family and friends?  Just reply to this email and let us know how many people you forwarded the SmearBusters site to, and we'll add that number to our totals. In another sign of impending movement from the Administration, Egyptian President Mubarak was in town, and I had the pleasure of joining other Jewish leaders for a meeting where he reiterated his desire to see the President push rapidly to achieve a final resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict. In J Street news, I'm proud to share with you a cover story in last week's Congressional Quarterly on the strong mark the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement is making in Washington. Chicago Public Radio carried a lengthy piece on the settlement issue, where I discussed the importance of finding a way to move past this immediate dispute to address the fundamental issues that will permit a comprehensive settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
    Finally, we were really excited to announce this week our plans to establish a national field and grassroots program in early 2010.  This new program will tie our growing Washington presence more directly to community-based organizing around the country.  We're really pleased that Brit Tzedek v'Shalom has already indicated a strong interest in seeing how their chapters and activists can coordinate closely with our new effort. Enjoy the last weeks of your summer!