Syracuse Area Middle East Dialogue Group

Letter from Jewish Peace Lobby

December, 2003


December 2003,

Dear Friends,

After three years of violence and terror, there may now be an opportunity to again move towards peace. In recent weeks there has been considerable attention paid to two non-official peace initiatives, The Geneva Accord (Beilin/Abed Rabbo) and the People's Voice Initiative (Nusseibeh-Ayalon).

Neither of these have the blessing of the Sharon government, but they have both received a qualified nod from the PLO and from the Bush Administration. Together, these two initiatives have already revitalized the Israeli peace movement and shaken up Israeli politics.

In the annual report you will find a detailed analysis of the two proposals. And enclosed in this mailing you will find a copy of Senate Resolution 276 introduced recently by Senator Feinstein. This mild but positive resolution applauds the new initiatives, calls on Israelis and Palestinians to build on these efforts, and urges the President to encourage them.

Despite its seemingly innocuous language, the Feinstein resolution is important, and demonstrates some rare political courage. It is opposed by the Sharon Government and not surprisingly, by
AIPAC. Chances are it will never be voted on by the Congress.

Now is a time to act. Contact your Senators and ask them to cosponsor Senate Resolution 276, meet with the editorial board of your local newspaper, organize a group to meet with your Congressperson to introduce a similar resolution in the House, organize a meeting to discuss the initiatives in your synagogue.

And once again, let me thank you for your continuing support.