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Robert Naiman

Robert Naiman

Posted: April 17, 2008 12:34 PM

Jewish Liberals Launch Counterweight to AIPAC


At last, at long last. There will be a hard money lobby in Washington that represents progressives on Israel/Palestine issues, that lobbies for Israeli/Palestinian peace, that acts as a counterweight to AIPAC.

It's called "J Street." (As in, K street with a J.) The full name is: "Americans for Middle East Peace and Security." Here is their launch video:

Unlike the existing groups, this group will actually support candidates for office.

Right now, they are taking nominations for who they should support in the fall. Make the best case that your favored candidate will work to promote Israeli-Palestinian peace. That's exactly the dynamic we need: candidates competing to do the most to promote Israeli-Palestinian peace, as opposed to competing to do the opposite.

There is no time like the present. This week, former President Carter is meeting with the exiled leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshal, in Syria. As Carter has said, "There's no doubt in anyone's mind that, if Israel is ever going to find peace with justice concerning the relationship with their next-door neighbors, the Palestinians, that Hamas will have to be included in the process."

Of course, as the Washington Post notes, it will be the case for the foreseeable future that AIPAC will have more money and more people.

But that misses the fact that those with less money can have more influence when they are telling the truth, if they can just muscle their way to the microphone.

If you think Carter is doing the right thing, consider giving this new organization your support.