TALKING POINTS AND SAMPLE LETTER TO THE EDITOR (LTE)
Talking points on the need for substantive American diplomatic intervention in the current escalation of violence in the Middle East:
- Don’t refer to Brit Tzedek or our campaign directly.
- State your basic concerns (“As a life-long Zionist, it has been heartbreaking for me to watch the upsurge in death and destruction between Israel and her neighbors over recent weeks”).
- Convey your belief that the US government should step in directly (“I hope that President Bush understands how desperately the people over there need American involvement right now, both to stop the bloodshed and secure the release of the Israeli soldiers.”)
- In your conclusion, state your belief that only negotiations can resolve the conflict in any permanent way (“The violence will only truly end when all the parties can sit down and reach a mutually agreed upon resolution, allowing for a Palestinian state to live in peace alongside a secure Israel.”)
- If there is anything specific to your paper’s coverage that you’ve found particularly important or noteworthy, make sure to mention it! (“I was gratified to read your recent editorial calling on the Administration to take more of a role in solving the recent crisis”; “I was concerned by the implication in SO-AND-SO’s column that America should stay as clear of this crisis as possible.”)
- If you’re Jewish, make sure to mention it!
- Keep it short – 200 words or less.
- Include all of your contact information: name, address, phone number and email.
- Remember that Jewish press deadlines are on Tuesday.
To the editor,
As an American Jew and supporter of Israel, I've followed the [name of paper's] coverage of the violence that has engulfed the Middle East with grave concern. If nothing else, the recent upsurge in violence shows that all the wars and the bloodshed until now have solved nothing. It is time for the Bush administration, together with the international community, to step up its efforts to broker a sustainable ceasefire and secure the return of Israeli soldiers. With the US on the diplomatic sidelines, the cycle of violence has escalated in recent weeks, leading to significant loss of civilian lives and significant damage to infrastructure. The Bush administration in concert with the international community, must launch meaningful diplomatic efforts, aimed at saving Israeli, Lebanese and Palestinian lives, and prevent a full-scale war in an increasingly volatile region.
Note on “Sample Letter”: Always rephrase the letter using your own words. Editors generally won’t publish a letter if they have received a number of others that are identical.