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Posts

Oy: Avigdor Lieberman is Israel’s Foreign Minister

jsteetJ Street is emerging as an interesting alternative lobby to Aipac in the US. It describes itself as ‘the political arm of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement’.

Here’s its latest mailing:

Now it’s official: Avidgor Lieberman is Israel’s new Foreign Minister and the country’s face to the world.

This is the same Lieberman who ran a racist and incendiary campaign targeting Israel’s Arab citizens, and promoted a loyalty oath and other ideas that threaten the foundations of Israeli democracy. [1] Within hours of taking office, he’s already tangled with the Obama Administration over his commitment to the two-state framework to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. [2]

Some American Jewish leaders want to sugarcoat the choice, calling Lieberman “moderate” and his proposals “legitimate.”

But we – American Jews and other friends of Israel – won’t stand for any whitewashing of Avigdor Lieberman’s platform or rhetoric. Join us in an open letter to Jewish community leaders right now asking them to stand up for our community’s values and against Avigdor Lieberman’s rhetoric and platform.

Click here to watch our short video and ask Jewish community leaders to join us in speaking out forcefully against Avigdor Lieberman’s demagoguery.

Of course, Israel has the right to elect whatever leadership it chooses. And we offered the new Israeli government our best wishes and congratulations on Monday – pledging to help Benjamin Netanyahu’s government where possible, and push when necessary, to achieve the goal of real peace and security for Israel, the Palestinians, and the whole Middle East. [3]

But that doesn’t mean we have to hit the mute button if their views run counter to our values and interests.

Lieberman’s views and proposals fly in the face of our community’s deepest beliefs and strongly held values. On his first day as Foreign Minister, Lieberman rejected the Annapolis process that committed Israel to a two-state deal with the Palestinians. The Obama Administration responded, saying they look forward to “frank conversations” with the new government. [4]

Lieberman needs to hear us loudly and clearly and know that America’s Jews are strong supporters of peace, justice, and democracy – for all.

As a friend and supporter of Israel, I am concerned that Lieberman’s proposals, if they gain further traction in Israeli politics, could threaten the foundations of Israeli democracy and, if unchallenged, could strain relations between the United States and Israel.

We – American Jews and other friends of Israel – can’t stand for any whitewashing of Avigdor Lieberman’s platform or rhetoric.

That’s why we must speak out right now – reaffirming our commitment to core Jewish and democratic values and rejecting Avigdor Lieberman’s demagoguery. Join us in standing up for justice, equality and democracy by clicking the link below.

Click here to watch the video and then sign our open letter from American Jews and others who care about Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic homeland.

Once you’ve watched the video and taken action, I hope you’ll forward this message to your friends and family and encourage them to watch our video, too.

Feel free to personalize your message. If you say it’s ok, we’ll also share what you write with the media and other J Street members in order to amplify our campaign.

– Isaac

Isaac Luria
Campaigns Director
J Street

[1] “A Hard-Line Gains Ground in Israeli Race,” by Ethan Bronner. The New York Times, February 8, 2009.

[2] “Lieberman: Israel not bound by Annapolis,” by Reuters. Haaretz, April 1, 2009.

[3] “A New Government.” J Street, March 30, 2009.

[4] “US sees frank discussions with new Israeli government.” Reuters, April 1, 2009.

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