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Reform Clergy Response to the UN Vote

Right Honourable Justin Trudeau

Office of the Prime Minister

80 Wellington Street

Ottawa, ON, K1A 0A2

Honourable Melanie Joly

Minister of Foreign Affairs

Global Affairs Canada

125 Sussex Drive

Ottawa ON K1A 0G2

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau and Madame Joly,

We write to you today as clergy of the Canadian Reform Movement, proud of our convictions as spokespeople for social justice and compassion. Our progressive community spreads from coast to coast, representing approximately 20,000 people. These have been dark days for our congregations, unprecedented in form. On October 7th we were traumatized by Hamas’

campaign of terror on Israel’s southern border. There has been no reprieve as we continue to

yearn for the return of the hostages and witness the grief of families torn apart. It pains us to see Israel’s soldiers called to duty, fighting for the survival of our beloved state. The loss of civilian Palestinian lives leaves us deeply saddened.

Further at home, we have never felt more alone. Our children are afraid to express their Jewish identity in public, the seniors of our community lament that the anti-Jewish hate they witness is comparable to the Holocaust. Universities have become hotbeds of radical propaganda targeting Jews. One by one, our friends have abandoned us, afraid to stand alongside our community in its

time of need.

We are ashamed to witness Canada’s recent call at the United Nations for a cease fire. To pivot in this way on the world stage is to tell Canada’s Jews that we are alone, that we lack the same rights of every other people to protect ourselves from terror and threat. This abandonment reminds some of us of the dark “none is too many” chapter in Canadian history when our nation turned its back on Jewish suffering because it was politically expedient.

We dream of a day when an Israeli and Palestinian state can stand side by side. One-sided

motions that cast blame on Israel sadly take us in the opposite direction. At the very least, we

would have expected an abstention, to refrain from mentioning Hamas is to hold Israel

responsible for Hamas` destruction of its people.

Over recent months we have been grateful to the Canadian government for its moral clarity in a time of darkness. For this conviction to have now wavered leaves us devastated, vulnerable and further isolated. We would welcome the opportunity to speak in coming days about finding pathways to address the desperate needs of our communities.


Rabbi Daniel Mikelberg (Chair), Temple Israel, Ottawa, Ontario

Rabbi Yael Splansky (Vice Chair), Holy Blossom Temple, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Dan Moskovitz (Past Chair), Temple Sholom, Vancouver, BC

Rabbah Gila Caine (Executive), Temple Beth Ora, Edmonton, AB

Rabbi Stephen Wise (Executive), Shaarei Beth El Congregation, Oakville, ON

Rabbi Philip Bregman, Temple Sholom (Emeritus), Vancouver, BC

Rabbi Carey Brown, Temple Sholom, Vancouver, BC

Rabbi Jordan Cohen, Temple Anshe Sholom, Hamilton, ON

Rabbi Lori Cohen, Temple Kol Ami, Vaughan, ON

Rabbi Michael Dolgin, Temple Sinai, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Ed Elkin, First Narayver Congregation, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Larry Englander, Temple Solel (Emeritus), Mississauga, ON

Rabbi Mark Glickman, Temple B’nai Tikvah, Calgary, AB

Rabbi Seth Goren, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Lisa Gruschow, Temple Emanuel Beth Sholom, Montreal, PQ

Rabbi Sam Kaye, Holy Blossom Temple, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Irit Printz, B’nai Shalom v’Tikvah, Ajax, ON

Rabbi Jordan Shaner, Temple Sinai, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Michael Stroh, Har Zion (Emeritus), Toronto, ON

Rabbi Cory Weiss, Har Zion, Toronto, ON

Rabbi Debra Dressler, Temple Israel, London, ON

Rabbi Audrey Pollack, Temple Solel, Mississauga, ON

cc: Ambassador of Israel to Canada, Ambassador Iddo Moed

Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations, Ambassador Robert Rae

Canadian Special Envoy on Anti Semitism, Ambassador Deborah Lyons

MP Rachel Bendayan

Honourable MP Carolyn Bennett

Honourable Bill Blair

MP Ben Carr

MP Julie Debrusin

Honourable MP Chrystia Freeland

MP Anna Gainey

Honourable MP Karina Gould

MP Anthony Housefather

Honourable MP Marco Mendocino

Honourable MP Joyce Murray

MP Taleeb Noormohammed

MP Yasir Naqvi

MP Rob Oliphant

Honourable MP Ya’ara Saks

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