American Friends Service Committee
Patrica Watson, Editor
Sara Burke, Assistant Editor
Pat Farren, Founding Editor
2161 Massachusetts Ave.
Peacework has been published monthly since 1972, intended to serve as a source of dependable information to those who strive for peace and justice and are committed to furthering the nonviolent social change necessary to achieve them. Rooted in Quaker values and informed by AFSC experience and initiatives, Peacework offers a forum for organizers, fostering coalition-building and teaching the methods and strategies that work in the global and local community. Peacework seeks to serve as an incubator for social transformation, introducing a younger generation to a deeper analysis of problems and issues, reminding and re-inspiring long-term activists, encouraging the generations to listen to each other, and creating space for the voices of the disenfranchised.
Views expressed are those of the authors, not necessarily of the AFSC.
Rabbinic Students at Washington, DC Rally
A group of students from different rabbinical schools went to the April Pro-Israeli rally in Washington DC April 13 wearing black, and passing out the statement below:
"Rabbinical and Cantorial Students for a Just Peace"
We are students from the Jewish Theological Seminary, Hebrew Union College, Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, and the University of Judaism. We have spent significant time studying and working in Israel. We worry about the safety and well being of our friends and family in Israel. We care deeply about the sustained viability of the Jewish State.
There is no justification for suicide bombings or other violent attacks against innocent Israeli civilians. There is also no excuse for the anti-Semitic rhetoric and violence that have recently erupted in Europe and in the United States. At the same time, we cannot condone the current level of violence against the Palestinian people.
As rabbis and cantors, we will teach our communities that every human being is a unique and valuable creation--b'tzelem elohimin, the image of God. What are we to do when loyalty to the Jewish State entails an abnegation of this fundamental principle?
The occupation is crippling us morally and spiritually. The thirty-five year Israeli presence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip both compromises the humanity of Palestinians and Israelis, and contributes to the ever-worsening cycle of violence.
Will excessive violence and destruction produce a moderate negotiating partner? Or another generation of suicide bombers?
Both sides bear responsibility for violence. Either side has the ability to take the lead in ending it. As Jews, and future rabbis and cantors, we call on our leadership to take this initiative.
The American Jewish community has adopted a policy of unconditional
support for Israel. Criticism of Israel is understood as anti-Zionist,
anti-Semitic, or self-
We call on the American Jewish community to express love of Israel through constructive criticism aimed at the establishment of a more just and moral Jewish state.
We call for American-brokered, fair peace negotiations aimed at the establishment of a viable Palestinian state alongside the Jewish State.