A significant and not-so-significant speech from the President yesterday.
Significant in that he formalized a policy toward Israel: the US endorses using the lines drawn after the 1967 War as the basis for future negotiations. Significant also in that he said Hamas must recognize Israel for there to be peace, and that he expressed opposition to the proposed UN vote.
Not-so-significant because the 1967 line (not a border because it is not yet a state nor a negotiated boundary) has been the de facto basis of every serious discussion about peace. It was for Oslo, it was for the Clinton and Bush administrations, it is for peace proponents inside and outside of Israel. So Obama merely made formal what has been guiding the discussion for a long time.
Many Jews and Jewish organizations have reacted with outrage and anxiety. Sometimes our People's love for eretz yisrael is expressed through fear, and so this is inevitable. But Israel has always been founded on hope, and its future will only be secure if the Jewish people can find the strength to balance fear (expressed as reasonable caution) with hope.
Oseh shalom bimromav hu ya'aseh shalom aleinu v'al kol yisraeil. May the One who makes peace in the high heavens bring peace to us and to all Israel.
Rabbi Joshua Rose
3950 Baseline Road
Boulder CO 80303