American Jews need to talk about Gaza

Posted on May 21, 2018

American Jews need to talk about Gaza.

We need to talk about why 62 Palestinians were slaughtered by the Israeli army a week ago, and over 10,000 maimed in the last seven weeks. We need to talk about root causes of this heart-wrenching violence.

We need to talk about how this violence is done in our names, how our own futures are tied up in finding a different way forward. And perhaps most of all, we need to talk about how to reach our friends, family, and community leaders who aren’t ready yet to take a stand.

Jewish Voice for Peace is the home for those conversations.

JVP is based on the idea that when American Jews and all our allies come together to talk about about Israel/Palestine starting with our values, something incredible happens: we can figure out together how to make change.

And that’s why I want you to join JVP, today. JVP is launching our spring member drive with ambitious goals: 1,000 new and 1,000 renewed members by June 1st!

And we want you to be one of them. Will you join JVP today?


Becoming a JVP member today is essential to making the forward progress we need. We need you. Your membership – starting at just $18! – does so many different pieces of the work at once. Becoming a JVP member means:

  • Access to our training and educational resources, from seasoned organizers and leading policy experts.
  • Proof for our opponents and allies alike: the American Jewish community is changing. Every member boosts our power, whether with the media, elected officials, or so-called “leading” Jewish institutions. There are already 15,000 JVP members in every state in the US – but we need many, many more of you.
  • Accountability in everything we do. Our members lead our chapters and councils. Our members do the actual work itself. Our members fund JVP. Our members are JVP.

Jewish Voice for Peace is also a home for action.

Will you become a JVP member today?


In the last 6 weeks alone, JVP members have participated in over 60 actions in 20 cities. We’ve lobbied our elected officials. We’ve earned dozens of media hits that reframe the conversation toward our core values. We’ve organized services and provided spiritual guidance to people who feel lost and consumed by hopelessness. We’ve modeled (I hope) a way for American Jews to be as loud as possible in the face of Israeli violence, while also helping make more room for Palestinians to be heard – especially among Jews.

And that energy has helped work up a huge wave of momentum that we need to seize.

Now is the best time to become a JVP member.


But there is still, clearly, so much more to do. The narratives in our communities and in mainstream media are changing, and fast. But US policy is not. I want you with us for all the important work we have planned:

Actions in another dozen cities to continue to mourn, recognize, and organize to end the atrocities committed against Palestinians in Gaza.

Innovative campaigns fighting US/Israeli police collaborations and educating young Jews about the true costs of “free” Birthright trips funded by right-wing billionaires.

Relentless legislative advocacy helping to earn support for historic legislation preventing US funding for the military detention of Palestinian children, and relationship building in progressive districts nationwide that proves the political calculus around supporting Palestinian human rights has changed.

We can’t change what happened last week. We can’t change decades of US and Israeli collusion to deprive Palestinians of their rights.

But I fully believe that we can change what happens next. And when you join JVP today, you’re helping carve a new future for us all. A simple one, really: a future of justice, equality, and dignity.

That’s a lofty and beautiful vision. But the path to get there is incredibly concrete. We do it one conversation at a time. One action at a time. One member at a time.

We need you.


PS: One of the most frequent questions I get from prospective new members is: “But I’m not Jewish!” Like so many Jewish communities and families throughout history, JVP isn’t only or exclusively Jewish. Furthermore, we are exceptionally honored by the support of those outside of our community, particularly Palestinian, Muslim, and Arab partners who lend their support to our critical projects. You are welcome here, whoever you are.

Jewish Voice for Peace is a national membership organization inspired by Jewish tradition to work for the justice, equality, and dignity of all the people of Israel/Palestine.

Jewish Voice for Peace
1611 Telegraph Ave.
Oakland, CA 94612
United States