Dear Friend of Brit Tzedek,

What a week...

... the Netanyahu coalition government finally sworn in, followed almost immediately by outrageous statements or blatant non-statements from the new leadership, calling into question even the most basic commitment to a peace process. (A position not supported by the majority of the Israeli people.)

Discouraging, to say the least.

The good news? During this same week, in Washington, DC, in Saudi Arabia, and again in Turkey, President Obama made it clear that he is not interested in foot-dragging and pessimism.

We need to make it equally clear that we stand strongly behind President Obama and his principled public stance in favor of Israeli-Palestinian peace.

Consider this Israeli-U.S. dialogue via speech-making over the past week.

In over two decades of public service, Prime Minister Netanyahu has not once endorsed a two-state solution, including his first week in office.

President Obama's response: "Let me be clear: The United States strongly supports the goal of two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security."

Within hours of taking office, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman announced that the 2007 Annapolis peace process "has no validity".

President Obama countered that the U.S. will continue to pursue the goal of two states agreed to in both the road map and the Annapolis meeting. This means freezing settlements, evacuating outposts, ending Palestinian violence, and negotiating on all core issues.

Obama also praised the Arab Peace Initiative, offering Israel normalization of relations with the Arab world in exchange for the establishment of a Palestinian state, in a meeting with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, and reportedly plans to adopt it. 

"There is no Cabinet resolution regarding negotiations with Syria," quipped Lieberman, "and we have already said that we will not agree to withdraw from the Golan Heights." 

President Obama’s position? “We [support] negotiations between Syria and Israel."

Encourage the President to go the whole nine yards. Encourage him to take the necessary steps to see his vision – and yours – come to fruition, whatever it may take.

B'Shalom,

Sue Swartz, Chair of Advocacy

Deepa Domansky, Washington Liaison and Advocacy Coordinator

P.S. Please share this Action Alert with family, friends, and colleagues.


Send a letter to the following decision maker(s):
President Barack Obama

Below is the sample letter:

Subject: Thank you for taking a principled public stance on Israeli-Palestinian peace

Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],

As a supporter of a negotiated two-state resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, I want to thank you for your principled stance for peace. I applaud your strong support for two states and your expectation that the parties follow through on previously negotiated agreements. I encourage you to take the necessary steps to see your vision -- and mine-- come to fruition, whatever it may take.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Take Action!

Click here to thank President Obama for taking a principled public stance on Israeli-Palestinian peace and encourage him to take the necessary steps to bring it to fruition, whatever it may take.

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Additional links: 

Lieberman: Israel is changing its policies on peace by Reuters. Haaretz. April 7, 2009.

U.S. envoy: Arab peace initiative will be part of Obama policy by Barak Ravid and Yoav Stern. Haaretz. April 5, 2009.

Israel pledges to work with U.S. for Mideast peace by Natasha Mozgavaya. Haaretz. April 4, 2009. 

Lieberman: Take 3 by Ron Kampeas.  JTA. April 2, 2009.

Why isn't Netanyahu backing two-state solution? by Aluf Benn. Harretz. March 1, 2009.

Israeli politician would let settlements grow by Associated Press. MSNBC. January 6, 2009.


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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