A Growing ‘Constituency for Peace’

June 14, 2013

Ten days ago, Secretary of State John Kerry put forth a challenge to our community, to raise our voices in support of his work to achieve a two-state solution. And American Jews have begun to answer his call.

In his address to the American Jewish Committee, Kerry stressed that American Jews have a critical role to play in the fight for Israel’s Jewish and democratic future. And evoking President Obama’s Jerusalem address, he promised, “Leaders will take bold steps only if their people push them to. You can help shape the future of this process.”

In the days following Kerry’s speech, several pro-Israel organizations have joined a growing chorus of support, including AJC, the Union for Reform Judaism, Israel Policy Forum, Ameinu and Americans for Peace Now.

But these organizations represent only a sliver of our broader community. If Kerry’s initiative is to succeed, more American Jews must join the call.

No doubt it would be easier to sit back and talk about why a two-state agreement may never be achieved, why this isn’t the time, and who’s more responsible for past failures. But that will not serve Israel’s interests and we cannot afford to squander this opportunity.

For sixty-five years, our community has rallied strongly to Israel’s defense in times of war. Now, to ensure Israel’s survival as a Jewish democracy, we must do everything in our power to advance the chances for peace.