Laurie Goodstein
The New York Times
December 20, 2012 - 1:00am


More than 500 American rabbis and cantors have released an open letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahuof Israel asking him not to build settlements in the contested E1 area of the West Bank, saying it would bifurcate a potential Palestinian state and be the “final blow” to a two-state solution. They said building would also violate commitments Israel has made to the United States, damaging relations between the countries. The United States and many other countries have urged Israel not to proceed with the plans. The letter was sponsored by Rabbis for Human Rights — North America, J-Street and Americans for Peace Now. A spokesman for the Israeli Embassy in Washington said the proposed building is in an area that “will remain part of Israel in a future peace agreement with the Palestinians, and will in no way prevent the emergence of a territorially viable Palestinian state.”

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: December 22, 2012


A report in the National Briefing column on Friday about an open letter from American rabbis and cantors to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel asking him not to build settlements in the contested E1 area of the West Bank misidentified the organization that sponsored the letter. It is Rabbis for Human Rights — North America; the group Rabbis for Human Rights, a separate organization based in Israel, was not involved. (The two groups do work together sometimes on various issues.)


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017