Damascus gate in Jerusalem

Damascus gate in Jerusalem.

We know that many of you, like us, paid special attention to President Trump’s statement about Jerusalem today, are eager to learn more, and are concerned about reactions in our community and in the streets of Jerusalem.

The United States has issued a travel advisory for Americans traveling to Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza. And though there are no currently known threats, the American Jewish community is alert to the potential for local security problems.

We have considered the Milwaukee Jewish Community Relations Council’s role in helping our community and have adopted the following strategy:

Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the Jewish people. In 1995, the United States passed the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which affirms that Jerusalem be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel and called for the US to relocate its embassy there. However, presidents have since issued a presidential waiver on national security grounds, keeping the embassy in Tel Aviv.

The status of Jerusalem is one of the most contentious issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and must be addressed through negotiation and thoughtful diplomacy. We are very concerned about repercussions and reactions.

The JCRC of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation is watching developments with great concern. We see our role as:

  • To educate our community by sharing thoughtful analyses fairly presenting a range of opinions reflective of our community’s views;
  • To help maintain civil discourse on the subject given how strongly held the positions are;
  • To work actively to ensure bipartisan and broad support for Israel in Milwaukee; and
  • To continue to mobilize our community against the movement to delegitimize Israel and against anti-Semitism.

For those who would like to learn more about the international implications of the U.S. officially recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, we invite you to join a 1-hour conference call with Middle East expert David Makovsky being offered by our partners in Washington, DC, on Thursday, Dec. 7 at 9:45 a.m. Central Time.

Other organizations’ statements released as of this morning:

ADL https://www.adl.org/news/press-releases/adl-welcomes-president-trumps-announcement-on-jerusalem-calls-for-focus-on

AIPAC https://www.aipac.org/learn/resources/aipac-publications/publication?pubpath=PolicyPolitics/Press/AIPAC%20Statements/2017/12/Jerusalem%20announcement

AJC https://www.ajc.org/news/ajc-applauds-us-recognition-of-jerusalem-as-israels-capital-city

AMEINU http://ourmailer.com/1QES-5C0BF-1CID2YURF0/cr.aspx

ISRAEL POLICY FORUM https://www.ipforum.org/2017/12/06/ipf-statement-president-trumps-remarks-jerusalem/

JSTREET http://jstreet.org/press-releases/trumps-change-us-policy-jerusalem-undermines-peace-efforts-lead-violence/#.WihCyUqnGM8

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