We, the undersigned American Jewish clergy, are deeply concerned about reports that Prime Minister Netanyahu will demand of President Obama, at their meeting at the White House today, that either the United States attack Iran, or else, Israel will.
We do not welcome the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran. We call on all the military forces in the region – including Israel’s – to divest themselves of their nuclear armaments and renounce any belligerent nuclear aspirations.
The State of Israel refuses to acknowledge its own nuclear arsenal or to submit to international monitoring. We believe it is hypocritical of Israel to demand of Iran what it refuses to agree to itself.
Most of the people of the State of Israel oppose Prime Minister Netanyahu’s military threats against Iran. They fear the consequences of an attack on Iran. As Jewish leaders, we too believe that the path of wisdom towards achieving peace and stability in the region is through dialog and engagement and not through acts of war. We call on the United States government to safeguard the interests of the people of Israel and Iran.
Nine years after the United States launched a war against Iraq that is widely recognized as having been badly executed and unjustified, Israel would have the U.S. implicate itself in a new war in the region, this time against Iran. We believe that Jews, and other Americans, will not support more reckless adventurism in the Middle East.
In this election year, we call on President Obama not to give in to warmongering. As Jewish leaders we cannot endorse an Israeli act of war against the people of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The Bible teaches us: “bakesh shalom v’rodfehu – seek peace and pursue it.” We urge President Obama to stand firm and to use his power as Israel’s chief supporter to draw Israel to the path of peace and justice.
Cantor Michael Davis, Evanston, IL
Rabbi Jeremy Milgrom, Re’ut, Israel
Rabbi Rebecca Lillian, Malmö, Sweden
Rabbi Rachel Barenblatt, Lanesboro, MA
Rabbi Brant Rosen, Evanston, IL
Rabbi Rebecca Alpert, Philadelphia, PA
Rabbi Julie Greenberg, Philadelphia, PA
Rabbi Margaret Holub, Albion, CA
Rabbi Shai Gluskin, Philadelphia, PA
Rabbi Zev-Hayyim Feyer, Claremont, CA
Michael Ramberg, Rabbinical Student, RRC, Philadelphia, PA
Rabbi Joseph Berman, Jamaica Plain, MA
Alana Alpert, Rabbinical Student, Hebrew College, Boston, MA
Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, Stony Point, NY
Rabbi Howard Cohen, Bennington, VT
Rabbi Brian Walt, West Tisbury, MA
Rabbi David Mivasair, Vancouver, BC
Rabbi Eyal Levinson, Israel, OT
Rabbi Alissa Wise, Oakland, CA
Rabbi Laurie Zimmerman, Madison, WI