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JfJfP comments


06 May: Tair Kaminer starts her fifth spell in gaol. Send messages of support via Reuven Kaminer

04 May: Against the resort to denigration of Israel’s critics


23 Dec: JfJfP policy statement on BDS

14 Nov: Letter to the Guardian about the Board of Deputies

11 Nov: UK ban on visiting Palestinian mental health workers

20 Oct: letter in the Guardian

13 Sep: Rosh Hashanah greetings

21 Aug: JfJfP on Jeremy Corbyn

29 July: Letter to Evening Standard about its shoddy reporting

24 April: Letter to FIFA about Israeli football

15 April: Letter re Ed Miliband and Israel

11 Jan: Letter to the Guardian in response to Jonathan Freedland on Charlie Hebdo


15 Dec: Chanukah: Celebrating the miracle of holy oil not military power

1 Dec: Executive statement on bill to make Israel the nation state of the Jewish people

25 Nov: Submission to All-Party Parliamentary Group Against Antisemitism

7 Sept: JfJfP Executive statement on Antisemitism

3 Aug: Urgent disclaimer

19 June Statement on the three kidnapped teenagers

25 April: Exec statement on Yarmouk

28 Mar: EJJP letter in support of Dutch pension fund PGGM's decision to divest from Israeli banks

24 Jan: Support for Riba resolution

16 Jan: EJJP lobbies EU in support of the EU Commission Guidelines, Aug 2013–Jan 2014


29 November: JfJfP, with many others, signs a "UK must protest at Bedouin expulsion" letter

November: Press release, letter to the Times and advert in the Independent on the Prawer Plan

September: Briefing note and leaflet on the Prawer Plan

September: JfJfP/EJJP on the EU guidelines with regard to Israel

14th June: JfJfP joins other organisations in protest to BBC

2nd June: A light unto nations? - a leaflet for distribution at the "Closer to Israel" rally in London

24 Jan: Letter re the 1923 San Remo convention

18 Jan: In Support of Bab al-Shams

17 Jan: Letter to Camden New Journal about Veolia

11 Jan: JfJfP supports public letter to President Obama

Comments in 2012 and 2011



Israel has little importance in US election

Does Israel matter in U.S. elections?

This is one of the Washington Post’s poll watcher series on determining issues for the next US election

By Scott Clement, Washington Post

President Obama and Republicans have repeatedly clashed over policy toward Israel, incited most recently by comments from the U.S. ambassador to Belgium, who argued that some anti-Semitism was rooted in territorial tensions between Israel and its neighbors. On Wednesday, Republican presidential hopefuls looked to court Jewish supporters at a forum held by the Republican Jewish Coalition.

The entire hubbub raises a critical question: How important is Israel as a voting issue?

In short, not very much. Domestic concerns are reigning supreme in 2012 and Jewish voters — who may be naturally more concerned about the state of Israel — make up a very small portion of the electorate, even in key swing states. But the low-interest issue could help clarify choices for Republicans, who see Israel relations as a higher national priority.

More than eight in 10 Americans cited domestic issues as their top voting issue in 2012 in a November Washington Post-ABC News poll, while less than 2 percent volunteered international issues. Even among international issues, Israel takes a back seat. None of the 1,004 adults interviewed for the survey mentioned Israel as the most important issue in their vote.

Jewish voters
Jewish voters made up 2 percent of voters in 2008, similar to their representation in the public overall, with their numbers peaking at 4 percent in Florida, a perennial swing state often decided by a few percentage points. Nationally, Obama won Jewish voters by a nearly 4 to 1 margin over Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), according to exit polls.

But Obama currently faces the lowest ratings of his presidency among Jews. In the latest Gallup data provided to the Washington Post, 51 percent of Jews approved of the way the president is handling his job and 42 percent disapproved. While Obama continues to score higher among Jews than the public overall, the sizable well of disapproval among a core Democratic group provides an opportunity for Republicans in 2012.

Republicans and evangelicals
Despite the absence of people mentioning Israel relations as a deciding factor in their vote, the issue may play a more important role in the Republican primary than the general election. Two key groups — conservative Republicans and white evangelical Protestants — see Israel as especially important.

More than six in 10 white evangelical Protestants and conservative Republicans said protecting Israel is a very important goal for the United States in an April Pew Research Center poll, compared with fewer than four in 10 of Americans overall. Sympathy for Israel over Palestine also peaks.

Heightened interest among evangelical Christians may reflect findings from a 2006 Pew survey, which found a majority of evangelicals believe Israel was given to the Jewish people by God and that Israel is the fulfillment of biblical prophecy.

Rep. Ron Paul (Texas) has earned accolades for his views on limited government, but his foreign policy stances have drawn criticism from his opponents in recent debates, including his position on Israel. In a November debate, Paul argued for reducing the U.S. role in Israel’s affairs, saying that “Israel should take care of themselves.” The Republican Jewish Forum barred Paul from Wednesday’s gathering, citing his “misguided and extreme views” on Israel.”

Why the strong calls of support?
Repeated declarations of support for Israel from Obama and his potential Republican challengers may reflect the lopsided nature in American views of the Israel-Palestinian dispute. Americans sided with Israel over Palestine by a 4 to 1 margin in a September Washington Post-Pew Research Center poll. Still more, half of all respondents sympathized with both, neither or offered no opinion.

In addition, Obama came under fire from a prominent Jewish donor [Haim Saban] this spring after his speech on resolving the border dispute with Palestinians. In November, the president worked to reassure Jewish campaign contributors, saying “we don’t compromise when it comes to Israel’s security.”


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