York, November 21, 2012 In response to news of a cease-fire between
Israel and Hamas, Rabbi Rick Jacobs, president of the Union for Reform
Judaism, issued the following statement:
We welcome news of a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, and pray that it may serve as a foundation for long-lasting peace.
years, and increasingly in the past week, Israel has lived under a
barrage of rocket fire from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, as well as
other heinous attacks, such as today's bus bombing, directly targeting
civilians. Israel's first responsibility is to protect her citizens, and
we are saddened that mounting terrorist attacks necessitated military
I am in Israel meeting with Israeli leaders, our Reform Movement, and those affected by the violence and have seen first hand
the enormous toll these attacks have taken on Israelis across the
country, including those who have been killed or injured, whose lives
are threatened by the rockets, and those who have been called up for
duty, or who have sent loved ones to the front.
We are grateful
that Israel has been able to conduct this campaign without a ground
incursion, and praise the deliberate care and caution with which Israel
targeted its efforts, with the goal of minimizing civilian casualties.
Despite these efforts, we are distraught by the deaths of innocent
civilians on both sides who want nothing more than to live in peace and
We commend the governments of the United States and
Canada for their steadfast support for Israel's security, and
particularly thank President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton and
Egyptian President Morsi for their active involvement in achieving a
cease-fire. Yet again, it is clear that the U.S. must play a central
role in advancing a long-term peace agreement between Israelis and
We continue to pray for stability and security for
all in the region, and hope for the day where we can be thankful that
two states will live side by side in prosperity and peace.