CRC statement disagreement


We disagree with the recent Community Relations Council (CRC) statement on the U.N. resolution on Israeli settlements (Security Council resolution 2334.) The statement also included links to several articles about the resolution. 

Neither the statement nor the links reflect the views of a substantial part of the American Jewish community (and most of the rest of the world) that the U.N. resolution was a reasonably good idea and that Israeli settlements are indeed a major obstacle to peace. We therefore ask the CRC to provide some additional articles we suggest below.

While Palestinian intransigence is obviously also an obstacle, the relentless settlement expansion is not only a short-term issue, it makes the prospects of ever finding a settlement to the conflict much more difficult. Thus we cannot agree with the CRC that the U.N. resolution calling attention to the settlements “does not take us closer to peace.” Also, while the resolution may “infuriate” some who “may be critical of settlement policies but support Israel’s right to exist,” not everyone in that group is so infuriated. Indeed, many are very supportive and are furious at the extreme venom directed at President Obama and Secretary Kerry over this issue.

The Jewish community must face the fact that not just Obama and Kerry, but nearly the entire world, including allies such as Britain, France, the rest of the Europe, even New Zealand, not to speak of China, Russia, and Israel’s peace partner Egypt, all think the settlements are wrong and are closing the door to peace for good. As the U.N. vote showed, not a single country on the UN Security Council shares Israel’s view of settlements.

Barry Schiller and
Nina Tannenwald

Providence, RI

Suggested articles:

• “The Last Act of Obama’s Israel Drama may be His Best,” by David Rothkopf, editor-in-chief of, a leading mainstream foreign policy site.

• Ilan Goldenberg and Brent Sasely, “Why Israel’s Settlement Construction Must be Stopped,” in “The National Interest,” the leading “realist” foreign policy journal.