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The following are our positions on a variety of topics:

American Jews And The State of Israel

The question of our relationship as American Jews to the State of Israel, is one of great importance, both for the American Council for Judaism and the broader Jewish community. As a liberal religious commitment, Reform Judaism embraces a broad diversity of opinion on this complex question. However, there are a number of perspectives that many of us would share.

One of our major principles affirms that Judaism is primarily a universal religious commitment, rather than an ethnic or nationalist identity. The historic Classical Reform position has always held that the national period in the early history of our faith was an important formative chapter - creating the shared sense of experience and fostering the spiritual and ethical values that it was our destiny to proclaim and share with all the world. This dynamic view of Jewish history rejects the concept that we are in “exile”. Our link to the land of Israel is a deep historic one, as the "cradle of our faith" – but Israel is not our “homeland”. We believe that America alone is our homeland, not only geographically, but because Jewish Biblical values of freedom, liberty and justice have helped shape the democratic tradition of the United States from the beginning. We are grateful and proud of the major contributions American Jews have made in the founding and building of this nation from its earliest days.

We share with all Jews everywhere common bonds of history and destiny. The State of Israel has deep significance for the Jewish experience. As a refuge for many Jews who have suffered persecution and oppression in other places, Israel certainly has special meaning for us. However, that relationship is a spiritual, historical and humanitarian one - it is not a political tie. We are American Jews – proud, loyal, responsible citizens of the United States, fully embracing our rights and obligations to our country. We are also part of the timeless, universal "House of Israel", but we have no political allegiance to the modern State of Israel.

We share with all Jews – and with many other people of good will - the hope and prayer for a secure, prosperous Israel, living in peace and justice with its neighbors. We support all the potential contributions that its people can make to the creative development of Jewish spiritual values and thought in the modern world - a vital part of that nation‘s destiny that hopefully will be realized when its energies can be directed to peaceful endeavors. However, we believe that the major setting for the continued dynamic development, influence and mission of Judaism in the future, will lie here in a vital and spiritually renewed American Jewish community.

© 2010 The American Council For Judaism.