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Seeking Peace, Pursuing Justice

Seek peace...and pursue it : Psalm 34:15

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Reform Jewish Leader Welcomes Speech by Secretary Powell

Applauds Powell’s Continued Focus on Palestinian Terrorism

NEW YORK, NY (November 20, 2001) -- Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie, President of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, made the following statement in response to Secretary of State Powell’s speech on the Middle East:

"We hope and expect that Secretary Powell’s speech represents a new beginning that will lead to further American involvement in the Middle East, an end to violence, and a renewal of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians. We welcome the appointment of General Anthony Zinni as a senior adviser who will, in the coming weeks and months, work to bring about a cease-fire and a return to negotiations," said Rabbi Yoffie.

"I also applaud Secretary Powell for his unequivocal condemnation of terror and incitement by the Palestinian leadership. In his words, ‘There must be real results, not just words and declarations.’ Until Chairman Arafat and Palestinian leaders recognize this, there can be no real progress in bringing about an end to the conflict."

"Secretary Powell, by invoking the names of the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin of Israel and the late President Anwar Sadat of Egypt, reminded us of their belief that there is no alternative to peace and of their courage in pursuing peace. May we not forget their path, and despite the multiplicity of obstacles that we face, may we recommit ourselves to their vision," Rabbi Yoffie concluded.



The Union of American Hebrew Congregations is the central body of Reform Judaism in North America, uniting 1.5 million Reform Jews in more than 900 synagogues. UAHC services include camps, music and book publishing, outreach to unaffiliated and intermarried Jews, educational programs, and the Religious Action Center in Washington, DC.