Americans for Peace Now and the Israel Policy Forum are tentatively discussing a merger. JTA has learned that top representatives of both groups met Tuesday in New York to informally discuss merging into a single organization that would advocate for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and greater U.S. engagement in encouraging such an outcome. The outcome of Tuesday’s meeting was that each organization’s board would consider in the near future whether to enter into more formal discussions. One factor leading to the meeting was the indication from donors that a single group would raise more money. Sources affiliated with both APN and IPF confirmed the meeting, which came in the context of wider discussions to establish a major group that would advocate a two-state solution. Brit Tzedek v’Shalom, the Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace, is involved in the broader discussions.”We are very eager,” said Diane Cantor, the BTV executive director. “Brit Tzedek v’Shalom supports efforts to unify the Jewish peace movement, to make it stronger.”Cantor rejected the account of a participant in the New York meeting that BTV’s grassroots structure kept it from joining a unified group. “Brit Tzedek has a unified message,” she said. Separately, Jeremy Ben-Ami, a Clinton administration policy adviser who now works for Fenton Communications, a Washington public relations giant, told JTA that the wider discussions were “not about a merger, it’s about something much bigger, bolder, new.”Ben-Ami said various configurations were under discussion at meetings that have been taking place monthly and that no announcement was imminent. Ben-Ami, a member of APN’s board, knew of Tuesday’s meeting but did not attend.
APN, IPF to merge?