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"...every member of Congress, without exception, should be allowed to visit Israel..."

We echo the statement released by our national umbrella organization, "...every member of Congress, without exception, should be allowed to visit Israel..."


August 15, 2019: The Jewish Federations of North America believes that every member of Congress, without exception, should be allowed to visit Israel, irrespective of whether we agree with their point of view. The relationship between Israel and the U.S. Congress is longstanding and unique, and has served as the bulwark of America’s bipartisan support for Israel for decades.


More from Jewish Federation of Cincinnati's CEO Shep Englander on this decision:


The Federations are selective about when we take positions. Federations are at the center of the relationship between the American Jews and the Jewish state (and we often help facilitate relationships between American public officials and Israel). So this decision directly affects our work and it would have been insincere for us to sit on the sidelines. 


At the same time, we value the diverse responses to the statement that community members have posted on our Facebook page. Sadly, the Jewish community and Israel have been put in a lose/lose situation. So I understand the strong feelings and believe that opposing views have merit. We can agree that the statements and goals of these two Members of Congress are unfair and destructive. But, in the long run, Israel wins by showing that it truly is the only democracy in the Middle East. That it is going to err on the side of being an open society. I am glad that Federation can be a safe place for members of the Jewish community to share diverse views, even on some of the most difficult and painful issues. We will continue to be there to play this role. 


No group has supported Israel more strongly than AIPAC. Read this article for their view on the issue.