John Ruskay’s Opinion piece (“Combating Delegitimization Requires a Big Tent,” Feb. 18) demonstrates the kind of thoughtful and courageous leadership so sorely needed in the Jewish community.
While friends of Israel may have disagreements over specific policies, we can — as Ruskay suggests — come together in support of an open, constructive and respectful conversation. The failure to promote this vigorous debate undermines the health and vibrancy of our community and carries a huge cost, eroding a lasting base of support for Israel for generations to come.
Ruskay is also right to draw the important distinction between those who would criticize certain Israeli policies versus efforts that seek to delegitimize and call into question Israel’s very right to exist, which we all agree should be combated.
The UJA-Federation of New York will play a leading role in defining this line and J Street looks forward to working with the New York federation to ensure a robust debate that strengthens our community and ensures a broad, inclusive pro-Israel tent.
President, J Street