Spread the Message: Peace is a National Priority


Brit Tzedek's Rabbinic letter to Senators John McCain and Barack Obama continues to gain momentum. At last count, we had 360 signers. Our next step is an extensive media campaign to amplify the voices of our religious leaders to convince the two men currently vying for the office of the President that, no matter who is elected, we are calling on him to take the necessary steps to finally end the conflict -- and that we will stand by him along the way.  The campaign will include:

  • A full-page color ad of the rabbinic letter and signers in the October 3rd issue of The Forward
  • Appearances by rabbinic signers on talk shows across the country
  • Op-eds by rabbinic letter signers in the Jewish and mainstream press
  • Ads in local Jewish papers with religious and secular signers
  • A short video featuring signers

Needless to say, the media needs are sizeable, and expensive. We hope that you might be able to make a contribution to our efforts to spread the word far and wide: The Jewish community is serious about our commitment to Middle East peace. Donate now.

With nine days to go, we need your help to make this Brit Tzedek's most successful campaign to date.  If you haven't already, please ask rabbis, cantors and Jewish clerical students you know to sign on at mccainobamaletter.org

Support Brit Tzedek as we spread a pro-peace message to the presidential candidates with the voices of the most credible members of our community.  Help us work toward a better tomorrow, a more hopeful future, tikkun olam.

See the letter, FAQs and signers to date at mccainobamaletter.org

A Rabbinic Letter to Senators John McCain and Barack Obama

We, the undersigned, call on you, the Republican and Democratic nominees for the office of the President, to pledge to make resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict a top priority of your Administration.

While you come into office with a long list of problems before you, the long-simmering conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is among the most urgent. After eight years of half-hearted diplomacy, there is no time left to walk softly and hope for the best.

The consequences of failing to establish a durable peace are grim. The influence of Iran and Hezbollah would surely grow among an increasingly bitter Palestinian population, and Muslim extremists would have further excuse to do vicious battle with the West. It is difficult to calculate the damage that a downward spiral into fresh waves of violence could hold.

American Presidents traditionally look to the Jewish community for insight on Israel-related policy. As Jewish clergy, we pledge to mobilize our people behind your leadership for a mutually-acceptable, two-state solution. We pledge to support you through difficult, trying times, and to celebrate with you when the job is done. We pledge to let the American public know: An American President who dedicates himself to the establishment of a durable Israeli-Palestinian peace acts in the best interests of Israel and the United States.

* We call on you to dedicate yourself to the establishment of a viable Palestinian state living in peace alongside Israel early in your first term.

* We call on you to appoint, within your first 100 days in office, a high-level, highly-regarded envoy to the region, an individual who has the ear of both Israelis and Palestinians, the respect of the American people, and ready access to your Oval Office.

* We call on you to establish mechanisms of enforcement and follow-through, so that decisions made and agreements signed will be respected and brought to fruition.

The Jewish High Holy Days are a time of reflection, renewal, and action. In keeping with the message of this season, we urge you to reflect on the diplomatic negligence of the recent past and to commit yourself to effective American leadership for peace.

Sample message to ask Rabbis, Cantors, and Jewish clerical students to sign on:

Dear XXXX,

I am writing to you today to make a personal request for your involvement on an issue that I feel is critical. We have an historic opportunity to bring peace to Israel with a new president coming into office soon -- but there are many worrying signs that the opportunity to achieve a two-state solution may be fading away.

The American Jewish community has to make clear to both Presidential candidates that we stand firmly behind negotiations, and will support the new Administration fully if it takes concrete steps to achieve a mutually-acceptable resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

I urge you to sign on to a new rabbinic letter urging the presidential candidates to make resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict a top priority of the next administration. Support from Jewish leaders like you is crucial; please join Rabbis Rachel Cowan, Peter Knobel, Jack Moline, Toba Spitzer, and Arthur Waskow in signing on to "A Time to Choose" at mccainobamaletter.org.

Read and sign the letter at: mccainobamaletter.org. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns. Thank you for your consideration.


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


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