These guidelines describe in broad terms our policy positions, and generally define the parameters we operate within when we speak as Jewish Voice for Peace. Since no document can cover every question that might come up, please contact Sydney Levy, sydney at jewishvoiceforpeace dot org, for any questions that arise with respect to more specific policy questions or interpretation of these guidelines.
Justice and Human Rights: We support justice, equality, democracy, self-determination and human rights for Israelis and Palestinians. We oppose all violence against civilians and all anti-Arab, anti-Muslim, and anti-Jewish bigotry and oppression.
Right of Return: JVP supports the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including the right of people to return to their countries. Peace will only be possible when Israel acknowledges the Palestinian refugees' right of return and negotiates a mutually agreed, just solution based on principles established in international law including return, compensation and/or resettlement.
U.S. Aid to Israel: We call for suspension of military aid to Israel until the Occupation ends. We oppose all US aid to Israel that is used to perpetuate the occupation, to attack civilians, to violate human rights, or to support the settlements.
Boycotts, divestment, and sanctions: Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) endorses the call from Palestinian civil society for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) as part of our work for freedom, justice and equality for all people. We believe that the time-honored, non-violent tools proposed by the BDS call provide powerful opportunities to make that vision real.
We join with communities of conscience around the world in supporting Palestinians, who call for BDS until the Israeli government:
Ends its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967 and dismantles the Wall; recognizes the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and respects, protects and promotes the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.
In the long and varied history of Jewish experience, we are inspired by those who have resisted injustice and fought for freedom. We strive to live up to those values and extend that history. By endorsing the call, we make our hope real and our love visible and we claim our own liberation as bound with the liberation of all.
JVP is committed to supporting and organizing all kinds of powerful and strategic campaigns to secure a common future where Palestinians, Israeli Jews, and all the people of Israel/Palestine may live with dignity, security, and peace.
Solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: The Israeli-Palestinian conflict must be resolved through a negotiated peace agreement to both sides and grounded in international law and principles of equity and justice. Whether that agreement embodies a one-state or two-state solution, JVP’s position is that any solution must be consonant with peace, social justice, equality and human rights, democracy, and respect for international law. The terms, “Zionism” and “Jewish state,” are emotionally loaded and defined differently by different people. We do not articulate our positions in these terms, but instead in terms that affirm the values we endorse: equality, human rights, democracy, and respect for international law. From this, it follows that we oppose discrimination against non-Jews in Israel, and we reject arguments for either a one-state or a two-state solution that are based in ensuring dominance of one group over another.
Communication Guidelines: JVP communicates from a basis in Jewish values and principles of justice. JVP does not tolerate racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Arab, anti-Muslim, or anti-Jewish language or imagery, nor does it demonize any group of people. JVP is unafraid to name injustice and condemns violations of international law, no matter who commits them. JVP avoids hyperbolic language and supports its claims with facts.
Coalition Guidelines: JVP groups are encouraged to engage in coalition work and may join coalitions in the name of their group (e.g. “Jewish Voice for Peace – Wichita”) even if some members of the coalition have positions different from our policy guidelines, as long as the official messaging of the coalition is generally consistent with our policy guidelines and the goals of the coalition are generally consistent with our mission statement. For example, a JVP group may join in coalition with pro-Zionist or anti-Zionist groups. JVP groups may not participate in a coalition whose demands or slogans are pro- or anti-Zionist.
Educational Event Guidelines: JVP groups may sponsor or participate in educational events in which speakers take positions that JVP itself does not take (for example, speakers who advocate a one-state or a two-state solution), as long as it is made reasonably clear that the opinions of those speakers do not necessarily represent the views of JVP, and as long as such educational events do not violate JVP’s principles of intolerance for racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Arab, anti-Muslim or anti-Jewish language or imagery, nor demonization of any group of people.