WASHINGTON – The Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA)’s Executive Director Halie Soifer issued the following statement in response to the White House unveiling of its Peace to Prosperity plan for the Middle East:
“Jewish Democrats are strongly supportive of the U.S.-Israel relationship, Israel’s security, and Israel’s right to self-defense. That is why we support longstanding U.S. policy aiming to bring about a negotiated two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In the absence of such negotiations, imposed or unilateral measures will impede prospects for peace because they will be rejected by one side.
“The overwhelming majority of Jewish voters support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. With this in mind, Jewish Dems view the plan released by the White House today as detached from reality because it treats the Palestinian people as a problem to be solved rather than as a party to the conflict. The complete absence of the Palestinians today speaks volumes about the illegitimacy and naiveite of the process that led to the plan’s creation.
“We have no illusions about the difficulty of achieving a negotiated two-state solution, and understand there are no shortcuts to peace. Despite some promising words on a page, this plan may actually impede prospects for peace by legitimizing unilateral Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank and strengthening rejectionists on the Palestinian side. We are not surprised that the Israeli government just announced plans to vote on annexing 30 percent of the West Bank, which will diminish the possibility of two states and increase the chance of violence and regional instability.
“President Trump has chosen to ignore one party to this conflict and effectively impose conditions on both sides. For decades, this approach was unacceptable to the Jewish community, and today is no different. While we wish it wasn’t so, today’s White House announcement appears to be more about politics than peace.”