To McCain & Obama: Put Israel-Palestinian Peace On Agenda

[Brit Tzedek v'Shalom has put forward a rabbinic letter that urges Senators Obama and McCain to set the peaceful and mutually agreed resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict high on the agenda of whichever of them is elected president -- along with willingness to wield vigorous US efforts to make sure both leaderships get moving. About 250 rabbis have signed. They seek many additional signatures. The full text can be seen here. To see FAQ's about the proposal and to sign it, please go to -- ]

We the undersigned, call on you, the Republican and Democratic
nominees for the office of the President, to pledge to make resolution
of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict a top priority of your

While you come into office with a long list of problems before you,
the long-simmering conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is
among the most urgent. After eight years of half-hearted diplomacy,
there is no time left to walk softly and hope for the best.

The consequences of failing to establish a durable peace are grim. The
influence of Iran and Hezbollah would grow among an increasingly
bitter Palestinian population, and Muslim extremists would have
further excuse to do vicious battle with the West. It is difficult to
calculate the damage that a downward spiral into fresh waves of
violence could hold.

American Presidents traditionally look to the Jewish community for
insight on Israel-related policy. As Jewish clergy, we pledge to
mobilize our people behind your leadership for a mutually-acceptable,
two-state solution. We pledge to support you through difficult, trying
times, and to celebrate with you when the job is done. We pledge to
let the American public know: An American President who dedicates
himself to the establishment of a durable Israeli-Palestinian peace
acts in the best interests of Israel and the United States.

* We call on you to dedicate yourself to the establishment of a viable
Palestinian state living in peace alongside Israel early in your first

* We call on you to appoint, within your first 100 days in office, a
high-level, highly-regarded envoy to the region, an individual who has
the ear of both Israelis and Palestinians, the respect of the American
people, and ready access to your Oval Office.

* We call on you to establish mechanisms of enforcement and follow-
through, so that decisions made and agreements signed will be
respected and brought to fruition.

The Jewish High Holy Days are a time of reflection, renewal, and
action. In keeping with the message of this season, we urge you to
reflect on the diplomatic negligence of the recent past and to commit
yourself to effective American leadership for peace.