On Sunday, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, at its 118th Anniversary convention at Citi Field in Queens, adopted Resolutions expressing the positions of the largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization on a range of critical issues. The Resolutions, which also serve to guide the OU’s programs and policies over the next two years, included the following:
50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Jerusalem This year – 5777/2017 – marks the 50th anniversary of the miraculous events of the “Six Day War.” During Israel’s war of self-defense, with G-d’s help, the Jewish people fought for and returned to the ancient cradle of our nation. Jerusalem must forever remain the spiritual, cultural and political center of the Jewish people and the State of Israel. The Orthodox Union is mandated to undertake all efforts necessary to secure and maintain Jerusalem as the eternal and undivided capital of the State of Israel, including pushing for the United States’ Embassy to be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
UN Security Council Resolution 2334 The Orthodox Union repudiates United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334 adopted on Dec. 23, 2016, which, among other things, refers to Jerusalem and parts of the Biblical homeland as occupied Palestinian territory. The Orthodox Union will strenuously advocate for revocation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334.
The Upsurge of Anti-Semitism in the United States The Orthodox Union is gravely concerned by the dramatic upsurge of anti-Semitism in North America and around the world. We have seen marked increases in physical and verbal anti-Semitic assaults, which, regrettably, are enabled and legitimized by the internet and social media. The Orthodox Union shall explore initiatives through which the organization can provide appropriate support and leadership to the greater Jewish community in North America and throughout the world in battling this latest manifestation of the world’s oldest form of hatred.
Combating Anti-Israel “BDS” on Campuses The OU resolved to continue to combat anti-Semitism on college campuses by speaking out against the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions against Israel movement. This has been a growing issue on college campuses across the country, and the Orthodox Union shall continue to raise awareness and address anti-Semitism in academia and on campus. The OU also calls upon all professional academic associations, as well as all institutions of higher learning, to publicly and explicitly reject boycotts, divestment and sanctions.
Supporting our Synagogues The synagogue is a central component of Jewish communal life. Historically, the OU has been a synagogue-based organization, premised on the belief that the synagogue is a gateway to a meaningful and fulfilling spiritual life for the individual and that it can be an epicenter of communal activism. The Orthodox Union shall strengthen its relationship with Jewish communities and synagogues throughout North America by providing shared resources, shared programming ideas, and shared solutions to some of the complex challenges facing Orthodox Jewish communities today.
The Importance of Jewish unity The Orthodox Union recognizes the primacy of achieving Achdut amongst the Jewish people and that we must take affirmative steps to mold communal behavior and uproot any negative traits or beliefs that may lead some to respond or act in manners that are inappropriate. The Orthodox Union shall act as a leader within the Jewish community by fostering relationships across the spectrum and convene gatherings that reinforce the notion that, as Orthodox Jews, we have far more in common that unites us than divides us.
The full text of these resolutions and the other policy positions of the Orthodox Union will be available on the OU Advocacy website (http://advocacy.ou.org/) .