Dear Friend of Brit Tzedek,
According to Haaretz, the Obama Administration "is
preparing to put heavy pressure on the new government to freeze
all settlement construction and keep its promises to lift
roadblocks." If the Administration is to play an
aggressive role in moving toward Mideast peace, it must have the
backing of Congress.
Last Thursday, Rep. Gary Ackerman, speaking as chair
of the House Subcommittee that addresses the Mideast, made it
absolutely clear that Israel shares responsibility for the
impasse in the conflict and must take bold political steps. Most
importantly, he put the settlements and the behavior of the most
radical settlers at the very heart of the matter. Thank
Rep. Ackerman for his leadership.
Here is some of what Ackerman said:
"...we're spiraling downward...The downward pressure
comes from terrorism and the march of settlements and outposts;
from the firing of rockets and the perpetration of settler
"...Palestinians have restored law and order in Jenin and
Nablus, and are finally starting to put some authority back into
the Palestinian Authority... what can be made of the new and
growing security dynamic in the West Bank, remains to be seen. A
lot will depend on whether Israel--in a break from years of
habit--can recognize its own self-interest in the success of
this Palestinian enterprise."
The importance of statements like these coming from a major
pro-Israel voice in Congress can't be overstated. You
can be sure that those who reject less than full praise for
Israeli government policy have wasted no time in raising their
concerns to Rep. Ackerman.
That's why it's so important that Rep. Ackerman get
support -- loudly, clearly and often -- from pro-Israel,
pro-peace voices. We must thank him
for taking such a strong stand on settlements while maintaining
his strong commitment to Israeli security. Click here to send a thank you note.
Rep. Ackerman knew very well that he would be criticized for
these statements. He gambled that you would support him. Last
Friday, Brit Tzedek's New York City Chapter mobilized hundreds
of Ackerman's constituents to make thank you calls. Now it's
As the chair of the House Subcommittee on the Middle East and
South Asia, Rep. Ackerman is also a national leader on Mideast
policy. Let him know that you are one of the many American Jews
and friends of Israel who will stand with him as he takes the
tough steps for Israel's best interests and the interests of
peace, security and hope for all the people in Israel and the
Let's make sure Congress knows that there are real political
rewards for advancing the cause of peace in the Middle East.
Please send Rep. Ackerman a thank you letter
Sue Swartz, Chair of Advocacy
Deepa Domansky, Washington Liaison and Advocacy
share this Action Alert with family, friends, and
Send a letter to the following
Representative Gary Ackerman
Below is the sample
Subject: Thank you for your February 12 statement
Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],
As a Jewish American from Brit Tzedek v'Shalom who strongly
supports Israel in its quest for peace and security, I want to
thank you for your bold and courageous statement of
February 12 at the Subcommittee hearing on Gaza.
While never wavering from your long-standing support of
Israel and your strong stance against terrorism, you made a
clear statement that settlement expansion, settler violence and
other acts by Israel have contributed to the downward spiral of
the situation in the Middle East.
This is exactly the
sort of sober and insightful support that Israel so
desperately needs now. Today, that support needs to take a
new shape, one that includes a clear assertion of the need
for Israel to live up to the commitments it has made to the
United States and to do its part to strengthen Palestinian
I hope and expect that many members of Congress will support
your stance and follow your example.
With my sincere