Understanding President Obama
The Obama Administration hit the ground
running on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict within hours of the
inauguration. From the President's first phone calls -- to the
leaders of the Palestinian Authority, Israel, Egypt and Jordan
-- up to this past week, when the Administration successfully
pressured Israel to open the Gaza border and suspend
construction on the West Bank Separation Barrier, President
Obama has been very clear on his firm commitment to taking the
lead in brokering a negotiated two-state resolution of the
seemingly intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
However, with the swirl of activity, it can be hard to
keep up with the various policy initiatives of the
Administration and the impact they have had thus far. To aid our
activists in advocating on behalf of the Obama Administration's
peace initiatives, we're launching a series of one-page briefs
to appear weekly until Rosh HaShana, the Jewish New Year. Please
take a moment to read each, and then pass them on to loved ones,
within your Jewish community, on blogs, your Congress members,
wherever there may be an interested party, willing to take up
the cause for peace. After all, for all his commitment,
President Obama faces formidable opposition -- witness his
recent failed efforts to press the Israeli government
to halt construction on an East Jerusalem housing
project. President Obama needs to know that he has
our backing to go the full nine yards.
Knowledge is only powerful if we use it
-- please make use of these briefs to add to the Jewish
community's support for President Obama's efforts!
Building Arab Support for
Peace doc pdf
The Obama Administration has been actively seeking the
involvement of Arab allies in its efforts to get the
Israeli-Palestinian peace process back on track, in order to
repair U.S.-Arab relations, gain leverage in peace negotiations,
and achieve greater regional stability through the normalization
of Arab-Israeli relations. To that end the Administration has
been systematically reaching out to leaders of individual Arab
countries and influential regional figures, as well as the
22-member Arab League, the pan-Arab organization which long met
Israel with implacable hostility but has twice since 2002
offered a peace deal in exchange for a two-state solution with
the Palestinians. So far, studies and news reports indicate that
the Arab peoples are encouraged by these actions, and that
President Obama is scoring high marks, but they're waiting on
further involvement until Israel takes bigger steps. For its
part, the Administration is continuing to actively engage both
the Arab states and Israel with a positive vision of a peaceful
Middle East, in which Israelis and Arabs move on from war and
distrust, to normal human interactions in business, in tourism,
and in friendship and peace.
?If Israel is going to make some very difficult
political decisions around settlements and ultimately around
borders that would allow for a Palestinian state, Arab states
have to make some difficult political decisions themselves,
recognizing Israel's existence, its legitimacy, that it has
security needs like any other state?" --President
Barack Obama, June 4, 2009
Building regional Arab support is essential to
advance the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Israel is to enjoy genuine peace, it must be secure from all
sides. As President Obama has emphasized, Israel?s security
?extend(s) to concerns that they have in a whole host of
neighbors where there?s perceived and often real hostility
towards Israel?s security.? Including the Arab countries as part
of a broader peace deal will allow true normalization among
neighboring countries, as Israelis and Palestinians both take on
integral roles in the region.
The Obama administration is urging Arab states to
take important steps in exchange for Israeli
According to news sources, the
administration is privately urging Arab states to implement the
following, in exchange for an Israeli settlement freeze:
- Arab countries in the Gulf would allow Israeli passenger and
civilian cargo aircraft to fly over their territory.
- Israel would be able to open interest sections in other
states' embassies in several Arab capitals.
- Arab countries would lift bans on the entry of tourists and
other visitors whose passports carry Israeli visas or entry
- Israeli-registered cell phones would be able to operate on
- Arab leaders would visit Jerusalem and receive Israeli
leaders in their own capitals.
- Israel and Arab states would hold cultural
Three Arab entities have already given Israel
Egypt in 1979, the PLO in
1993, and Jordan in 1994.
Normalization of relations with Arab countries is
fundamentally in Israel's interest.
recognition of Israel by the Arab world would signify the
acceptance of Israel's legitimacy. Israelis could travel, enter
economic partnerships, and expand their opportunities throughout
the Middle East. Israel could take its place as a regional
leader in technological innovation and progress of all kinds as
true normalization deepens the ties among neighboring countries
and makes it increasingly difficult to justify hostilities
against one another.
The Presidents of both the United States and Israel
have praised the Arab League Peace plan.
Obama told Israel's President Shimon Peres that he is "very
impressed" with the plan, which offers full Arab recognition of
Israel in return for return to the 1967 borders. Peres
himself praised the Arab Plan, saying Israel could obtain peace
with all Arab states for the price of an agreement with the
The Arab League supports President Obama's
The League has affirmed that Arab states
are ready to "take the necessary steps to support the American
effort," and will "deal positively with Obama's proposal to
resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict." It has called for a U.S.
peace plan that would include a specific time frame and
mechanisms for supervision of implementation and monitoring.
Brit Tzedek v'Shalom, The Jewish
Alliance for Justice and Peace
11 E. Adams Street, Suite
Chicago, IL 60603
Phone: (312) 341-1205
Join: Become part of our movement for
Donate: Help us spread our message far and
Renew: Continue to sustain our
Share this message:
Tell others about Brit Tzedek v'Shalom.
Receive regular updates: Click if you would
like to get weekly updates from Brit Tzedek v'Shalom.
Click to see our website.
This message was sent to . Visit your subscription management page to modify your email communication preferences or update your personal profile. Click here (or reply via email with "remove" in the subject line) to remove yourself from ALL email lists maintained by Brit Tzedek v'Shalom.