URJ Opposes Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael’s (KKL-JNF) Expansion of Jewish Settlements with Private Land Purchases Throughout the West Bank

With KKL-JNF’s executive committee voting on Sunday, Feb 14, politicizing support for cherished Zionist institutions ill serves the cause of Zionism and the unity of the Jewish people.

February 12, 2021 - Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism, has released the following statement:

The Union for Reform Judaism strongly opposes Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael’s (KKL-JNF) plan to expand Jewish settlements by purchasing private land throughout the West Bank with priority given to land within existing settlements. We have long opposed the proliferation of settlements because they endanger the possibility of a two-state solution.

We love and support the Jewish and democratic State of Israel which is why we will continue to strongly oppose policies that undermine the safety, security and moral character of our Jewish homeland.

In the fall of 2019, we blew the whistle and strongly criticized KKL-JNF when we discovered that they were secretly purchasing land in the West Bank. With Sunday’s planned executive committee vote this longstanding Zionist institution plans to make those purchases openly as part of the agenda of the organization’s new right-wing leadership.

Politicizing support for cherished Zionist institutions ill serves the cause of Zionism and the unity of the Jewish people. Especially at this moment when Israel is looking to forge a strong relationship with the Biden administration this unilateral move could be inflammatory and harmful.

We call on KKL-JNF leaders to reject the proposed plan.


About the Union for Reform Judaism
The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) builds community at every level—from the way we collaborate with congregations, organizations, and individuals to how we make connections across North America to advance contemporary and inclusive Jewish life. Providing vision and voice to transform the way people connect to Judaism, we help congregations stay relevant and innovative, motivate more young Jews to embrace Jewish living, agitate for a more progressive society, and foster meaningful connections to Israel.

Founded in 1873, URJ has grown into the largest and most powerful force in North American Jewish life, with nearly 850 member congregations and work that inspires, connects, and educates millions of people. Our legacy, reach, leadership, and vision mean that we can unite thousands of years of tradition with a modern, evolving Judaism to strengthen Jewish communities today and for future generations.

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