JVP to Congress: Boycott Launch of Hate-backed “Congressional Israel Victory Caucus”
Washington, DC (April 26, 2017)–Tomorrow, Congressmen Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and Bill Johnson (R-OH) will host a breakfast to launch a new “Congressional Israel Victory Caucus.” Organized by the Middle East Forum, the new caucus puts forward a racist and anti-Muslim vision for the region that denies Palestinians basic rights to dignity and equality.
The approach of the caucus is laid out in a promoted paper by MEF’s head, notoriously anti-Muslim Daniel Pipes, titled “A Palestinian Defeat is Good for All” in which Pipes lays out a proposal to, in his words, “break the Palestinian will.” The paper explicitly encourages U.S. support for Israel to impose collective punishment of the Palestinian people, a crime under international law. It makes specific recommendations, including shutting off the water and electricity for Palestinians, expanding settlements, seizure and occupation of Palestinian land, stripping Palestinians of citizenship and residency rights in response to individual acts of violence. Many of the steps encouraged by the newly formed caucus are actions that Israel has already taken, actions that violate international law and go against basic values of human rights. The goal of the caucus appears to be to garner explicit support from U.S. political leaders for such appalling practices.
Rabbi Alissa Wise, Jewish Voice for Peace Deputy Director: “There’s no such thing as an “Israeli Victory.” There is only justice, for Palestinians and Jewish Israelis together. The alternative is ongoing occupation, apartheid, and dispossession. We are coming up on 50 years of occupation, and 70 years since the Nakba, the violent displacement of Palestinian people during the establishment of the State of Israel. There is no better time for congressional leaders to demonstrate that they are on the side of human rights, not the side of ongoing apartheid and collective punishment.”
Jewish Voice for Peace, alongside our partners at MPower Change and the Center for New Community are calling on our congressional leaders to reject this hateful approach, and instead work towards a just and more peaceful future based on equality and freedom.