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Opposing the BDS Movement

The Reform Jewish Movement, deeply rooted in its love for Israel and desire to see the Jewish state live in peace and security with its neighbors, opposes the movement to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel. In 2005, the Union for Reform Judaism passed a resolution identifying BDS as an obstacle to peace, stating, “We deeply deplore efforts that blame Israel for the failure of the peace process or that seek to use economic actions against Israel, including singling out for divestment companies working in or doing business with Israel. These efforts are more likely to hinder rather than advance the peace process.” According to a 2016 Central Conference of American Rabbis resolution condemning BDS, “The BDS movement does not recognize the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.  Its leaders ignore the complexity of Israel’s reality and fail to offer a reasonable path forward in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

Our Movement has been engaged in the important work to encourage partnership and reconciliation over isolation and divestment, particularly through our interfaith relationships. The 2005 URJ resolution encourages congregations to “engage in dialogue within local communities to build understanding, to develop bridges of communication with those in a position to influence their own organizations’ institutional policies and to explain the counterproductive impact of divestment policies.” Through authentic relationships with leaders in faith, academia, progressive activism and government, we can work to stem the tide of deplorable anti-Israel activism.