The Jewish Council for Public Affairs endorsed for the first time a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
At its annual plenum Tuesday in Atlanta , the body, an umbrella organization representing 14 national Jewish groups and 125 local Jewish community relations councils, resolved that “the organized American Jewish community should affirm its support for two independent, democratic and economically viable states — the Jewish state of Israel and a state of Palestine– living side-by-side in peace and security.”
The resolution also included compromise language reflecting American Jewry’s “diverse views about current and future policies of the Israeli government towards settlements,” and blamed the standstill in the peace process on Palestinian intransigence. It appeared to pass unanimously, though the Orthodox Union, which has been outspoken in objecting to any deal to share or divide Jerusalem, had considered abstaining. According to one of its officers, David Luchins, the O.U. was satisfied with the final text, but still felt it represented an attempt to “micromanage” the peace process.
The resolution came about in response to recent events like the seizure of Gaza, the “reconstitution” of the Palestinian Authority and the latest U.S.-backed peace initiative, said the JCPA’s senior associate executive director, Martin Raffel.