Letter to the editor, Aug. 22 edition

Coordinated response to September conference

There are, most regrettably, ongoing efforts to delegitimize, to demonize and to isolate Israel. This is a campaign that distorts the history of the region and seeks to undermine Israel’s right to exist. These are efforts that ignore Israel’s legitimate right to defend itself from terror and that feature reprehensible and outrageous comparisons of Israel to apartheid South Africa and even to Nazi Germany

One such effort is scheduled for late September, when a national conference is being held in St. Louis to develop strategies and to provide training on promoting economic boycotts, divestments, and sanctions targeting Israel, and on creating academic and cultural boycotts as well.

In choosing the venue for such events, organizers often seek to take advantage of the credibility and prestige of the university campus. This is true of the September conference which is being held in a rental space at Saint Louis University. This conference is not a university-sanctioned event.

The centrality of Israel is a core value of the Jewish community. A deep concern for Israel’s security flows naturally from that value. Impelled by that concern, our organizations will, in consultation with the administration, campus organizations, students and faculty at St. Louis University, carefully consider the appropriate response to the September conference. We will be updating the community as this clarification proceeds.

Batya Abramson-Goldstein, Executive Director, JCRC

Karen Aroesty, Regional Director, ADL

Nancy Lisker, Regional Director, AJC

Julia Lieberman, Advisor to Jewish Students at SLU

Jacqueline Ulin Levey, President/CEO, St. Louis Hillel

Rabbi Hershey Novack, Director, Chabad on Campus