The Israel-PLO Declaration of Principles signed in Washington, DC, September 13, 1993, offers the best hope for a comprehensive, regional peace accord. However, the Declaration of Principles (DOP) is the beginning and not the end of a process, and must be carefully nurtured.
The UAHC is fully committed to the security and economic vitality of the State of Israel and its citizenry. As Reform Jews we are also committed to the vision of the Prophets and Jewish sages who considered the pursuit of peace a religious imperative.
We applaud the Government of Israel for its efforts to negotiate a fair and equitable settlement with its neighbors, based upon the concept of territorial compromise in exchange for comprehensive, full and lasting peace. We reject the position held by some in the Jewish community that a permanent resolution to the Arab-Israel conflict cannot be attained by exchanging land for peace. As religious Jews we consider the land of Israel sacred, but never more than human life. The Jewish people's legitimate claims to the Land of Israel must be tempered with the need to prevent furthering shedding of blood and loss of life, while assuring Israel's security.
THEREFORE, the Union of American Hebrew Congregations resolves to:
- Express strong support for the Declaration of Principles, and the hope that Israel and the PLO will quickly reach the agreements necessary to implement them;
- Urge all parties to move the Middle East peace process forward without delay through the bilateral talks between Israel and its neighbors, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon, and the multilateral talks with numerous other countries worldwide;
- Commend the United States for its continued efforts to have the Arab boycott lifted; urge all countries and corporate entities to cease complying with all manifestations of the boycott; condemn the recent statements by representatives of the Arab League calling for expansion of the boycott;
- Urge the United States, Canada, and other nations to take all steps necessary to ensure Israel's security at every state of the peace process, before and after achieving final agreements with all of Israel's neighbors;
- Express strong support for, and confidence in, the Government of Israel in its efforts to negotiate a fair and equitable settlement with Israel's neighbors, based upon the concept of territorial compromise in exchange for comprehensive, full and lasting peace, with secure and defensible borders for Israel;
- Reaffirm our commitment to a united Jerusalem as the capital of Israel with the guarantee of free access to the sacred places for all faiths, and urge the United States and Canada to move their embassies from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem without further delay;
- Undertake an extensive grass-roots campaign to convey to the American, Canadian and Israeli public and their governments that there is strong support for the peace process within the American and Canadian Jewish communities;
- Urge ARZA, Kadima, and the Commission on Social Action to undertake the coordination of this grass-roots campaign; and
- Urge all congregations of the UAHC to encourage their congregants to expand their membership in ARZA and Kadima.