Martin Raffel, project director for the Israel Action Network, was quoted extensively in Stewart Ain’s article, “Consensus Seen Taking Shape On Boycotts” (March 18).
While we appreciate The Jewish Week’s thorough coverage of the campaign to combat the assault on Israel’s legitimacy, in order to avoid any misunderstanding of Raffel’s comments, we want to make clear that we, along with The Jewish Federations of North America, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, and the Israel Action Network, do not support boycotts of any kind against Israel and Israelis, regardless of where they live.
In fact, we are proud that the Israel Action Network’s efforts to combat the delegitimization of Israel are just one recent example of how Jewish federations support the Jewish state.
The Jewish federation movement is the largest philanthropic supporter of the State of Israel, contributing more than $1 billion over the last decade alone to aid its most vulnerable citizens, help build the nation and allow Jews worldwide to experience their homeland.
Jewish federations, for example, have recently provided more than $200 million to Israel for critical needs such as helping settle 20,000 immigrants, assisting more than 65,000 unemployed Israelis with job training and placement, and sending 35,000 young people on Birthright trips. Meanwhile, federations continued advocating on such pressing issues as the threat of a nuclear Iran.
Our commitment and love for Israel deeply informs our work, and our historic bond with Zion will forever shape our global mission.
President and CEO, Jewish Federations of North America
Rabbi Steve Gutow, President and CEO, Jewish Council for Public Affairs
Martin Raffel, Project Director, Israel Action Network
Editor’s Note: The article never suggested that the Israel Action Network supported targeted boycotts. The thrust of the story centered on which Jewish groups, based on their various positions, are considered inside the pro-Israel tent and which are considered outside the tent.