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Zioness Statement on Otzmah Yehudit

Dear Zionesses, 

Zioness was founded to ensure  a space within the progressive activist community where Zionists can proudly participate in the social, racial, economic and gender justice issues of our time––without checking our Zionist identities at the door.  We reject the litmus tests that are too often imposed on Jews in domestic social justice movements that arbitrarily marginalize, and even demonize, our community. For that reason, we do not take positions on the politics or policies of the democratically-elected government of Israel, which are complicated and challenging, and for which American Jews cannot reasonably be held accountable. We are united instead in our commitment to the advancement of American justice movements and the existence of a safe and secure Jewish state in our historic national homeland. For us, these two ideals are mutually supportive and explicitly progressive.

Yet, there are lines that sometimes must be drawn. Zioness recognizes that the Zionist dream cannot survive if its national manifestation is represented by advocates  of views that are racist, violent, and fundamentally at odds with our humane values as a people. For this reason, we feel compelled to speak out against the participation of the Kahanist political party Otzma Yehudit in a coalition that is likely to secure representation in the next Israeli Knesset (parliament). Otzma Yehudit has engaged in heinous acts for which it has been condemned by the vast majority of Jews, Israelis and Jewish organizations. It does not represent the movement, the people or the state that we know and love. 

With love and solidarity,

Team Zioness

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