Dear Friends of Brit Tzedek,

As we celebrate Chanukah this year, let's remember that miracles are possible. Four years ago, most people thought the rapid growth of a grassroots Jewish pro-Israel, pro-peace movement across America was impossible. Yet, here we are today with 35,000 supporters and 39 chapters, and our growth shows no signs of slowing.

The generous support of our members accounts for more than half of our entire annual budget. Without you there is no oil in our Hanukah menorah. Without you, there is no Brit Tzedek. Please donate generously.

We are optimistic about the possibilities for change in U.S. foreign policy with respect to the Israeli-Arab conflict in light of the Baker-Hamilton recommendations. The Commission's frank reassessment of what it means to be a good ally to Israel is clear: "The United States does its ally Israel no favors in avoiding direct involvement to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict." The Commission's recommendations with respect to our issues represent a victory for all who have worked for and contributed to pro-peace, pro-Israel initiatives. Brit Tzedek is already actively advocating for Congressional action based on the Baker-Hamilton recommendations with respect to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and for their adoption by the Bush Administration.

As you receive this letter, Brit Tzedek chapters around the country are having meetings in their districts with newly elected or re-elected members of Congress. In January, Brit Tzedek's leadership will spend a day on Capitol Hill visiting with Members of Congress and key staff. We are in process of launching an innovative, multilevel campaign, which will involve grassroots, internet, and DC-based advocacy and communication, called "Let's Talk." And we are preparing to bring hundreds of Brit Tzedek grassroots activists to Washington for four intensive days of training and leadership development, as well as congressional visits.

This past year we introduced a new pro-Israel, pro-peace rabbinic voice into the public discourse with two Rabbinic Letters collectively signed by 700 rabbis and cantors from across the country. Many are now members of our newly formed Rabbinic Cabinet, which conjoins activism with spiritual leadership.

What we are most proud of during the year about to end is that, of all the American Jewish peace groups, Brit Tzedek was the ONLY one to call repeatedly for U.S. diplomacy to achieve an immediate ceasefire shortly after the war started in Lebanon. Across the country we participated in Jewish community rallies and received extensive media coverage for our pro-Israel, pro-ceasefire message. We said, at the time, that it was a war that could not be won and which would cost dearly in human life. Unfortunately, we were right. Even now, the remains of unexploded Israeli-fired, U.S.-made cluster bombs litter the villages and orchards of southern Lebanon, causing injury and death. At the same time, residents of northern Israel are still recovering from the economic devastation and trauma of war.

World crises like these make Brit Tzedek's voice and message vital for the future of peace. Every time we are heard, it is because of you. When we issue action alerts, literally thousands of you all around the country respond with phone calls, faxes, emails and visits to congressional district offices.

We count on you to keep the miracle happening so that Brit Tzedek's voice grows stronger across America. Your contribution represents new voices you bring into the American Jewish pro-Israel, pro-peace movement. With your help, they will be heard.

Chag sameach,

Marcia Freedman
President


Diane Cantor
Executive Director

 


Brit Tzedek v'Shalom, The Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace
11 E. Adams Street, Suite 707
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: (312) 341-1205
Fax: (312) 341-1206

info@btvshalom.org
www.btvshalom.org


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