Founded in 1971, Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East (UUJME) works within the Unitarian Universalist community to promote peace and justice in Israel-Palestine, including a settlement of the conflict affirming the equality, dignity, freedom and security of all peoples involved.
UUJME has a national Board of Directors as well as several local groups affiliated with Unitarian Universalist churches throughout the United States. This web site contains many resources for people interested in learning more about the conflict in Israel-Palestine, which stretches back to the 1880s, as well as resources for those ready to take action to promote justice and human rights in Israel-Palestine.
Photo: Emile Ashrawi, West Bank, Palestine
UUJME letter to Scarlett Johansson
The UUJME Board of Directors has written a letter to actress Scarlett Johansson after learning she had accepted the role of spokesperson for SodaStream. SodaStream is an Israel company that manufactures home carbonation systems in a West Bank settlement, thereby profiting from the Israeli occupation. The Interfaith Boycott Coalition, of which UUJME is a member organization, has been conducting a boycott of SodaStream, and many of UUJME's members and supporters have signed the online petition asking stores and customers not to stock or buy SodaStream products.
Israel-Palestine one of six CSAI topics under consideration!
UU member congregations are now considering six difference Congregational Study/Action Issues (CSAIs), among them one that UUJME proposed, titled "UU Values and the Pursuit of a Just Peace for Israelis and Palestinians". Congregations may vote to select up to five CSAIs that will appear on the final agenda at the 2014 UUA General Assembly in Providence, RI, where delegates will choose one CSAI that will be sent to member congregations for four years of study, reflection, and action, during which time a Statement of Conscience can be approved by General Assembly delegates.
This is a great opportunity to finally get UUs to talk seriously about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict! UUJME is encouraging our members, friends, and supporters to help raise awareness of the CSAI voting process in their own congregations and to foster support for the Israel-Palestine CSAI among their fellow congregants. UUJME has published a special edition of our newsletter that members, friends, and supporters can use to help gain congregational support for our CSAI. The deadline for congregational voting is Feb 3, 2014, so there is little time to waste!
UUJME Fall 2013 Newsletter is here!
Read film and book reviews, updates on divestment efforts and local chapter activites, a report from the last summer's UUJME trip to Israel-Palestine, and more in the latest UUJME Newsletter!
2014 Sermon Contest Theme Announced
The theme for the 2014 UUJME Sermon Contest is "Unitarian Universalist Values and the Pursuit of a Just Peace for Israelis and Palestinians". Click here for information on entering the contest. The contest is open to all ministers, seminarians, and laypersons, so if you know of someone who might be interesting in entering the contest, please make sure they know about it. The winning sermon will be awarded a $500 prize!
Ambassador Oren needs to hear from us!
Last year at our “Justice General Assembly” in Phoenix, UUs voted to reject the Doctrine of Discovery, the colonial-era legal concept asserting that colonial powers have the right to confiscate land from non-European indigenous peoples. The Doctrine of Discovery was used by the U.S. government as the legal basis for its forcible confiscation of Native American land and subsequent transfer of Native Americans to reservations.
Sadly, however, the Doctrine of Discovery appears to be alive and well today. Read more ...
2013 UUJME Sermon Contest winning sermons now available
Transcripts of the winning sermons from the 2013 UUJME Sermon Contest, on the topic Confronting Religious and Cultural Entitlement in Israel-Palestine, are now available! The winning sermon, by Galina L. De Roeck, is titled "The Promised Land", while the runner up sermon, by Heather Concannon, is tlted "Living Somewhere".
UUJME TIAA-CREF divestment campaign update
UUJME has asked UUs to sign a petition to TIAA-CREF calling on it to divest from companies that profit from Israel’s occupations of the Gaza Strip and West Bank, including East Jerusalem. The petition to TIAA-CREF is particularly appropriate for UUs because the staffs of many UU congregations and organizations have their retirement savings with TIAA-CREF, and because TIAA-CREF prides itself on socially-conscious investing. We've gotten hundreds of signatures so far, but we hope to get many more. Read more to find out how you can help!
UUJME Spring 2013 Newsletter is here
Read about UUJME's General Assembly plans; an update on the TIAA-CREF divestment campaign; 2013's UUJME Sermon Contest winner; the inspiring activism on behalf of justice in Israel-Palestine of several UUs, including an interim minister, a college student, and a retired civil engineer working on water projects in the occupied West Bank; and more in the Spring 2013 UUJME Newsletter!
Get a 20% discount on Beacon Press's new book by Rashid Khalidi and support UUJME!
The UUA's Beacon Press has just released a timely new book from author and Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi entitled Brokers of Deceit: How the U.S. Has Undermined Peace in the Middle East. In light of President Obama's recent trip to Israel-Palestine, this book could not have come at a more opportune time, and UUJME has just signed an agreement with Beacon Press to offer a 20% discount and free shipping to all UUJME members, supporters, and contacts! What's more, UUJME will receive a 10% rebate on all books purchased through this agreement. Learn more!
2013 UUJME Human Rights Trip to Israel/Palestine plans finalized!
UUJME's Don McInnes will again be leading a human rights trip to Israel/Palestine this summer, from June 24 - July 4, 2013. If you'd like to join the trip, a non-refundable deposit of $250 by March 13 is needed, so act quickly!
UUJME Endorses SodaStream Boycott
SodaStream is an Israeli corporation that manufactures consumer devices that create soda water from tap water in the home. SodaStream bills its product as being environmentally friendly, as it helps reduces waste from bottles and cans created by commercially-bottled carbonated beverages. Unfortunately, SodaStream's main manufacturing plant is located on illegally-confiscated Palestinian land in the West Bank settlement of Mishor Edomim, which means the profits from the sale of SodaStream products are being used to sustain Israel's military occupation of Palestinian land. UUJME has heeded the call of Palestinian civil society to boycott SodaStream, and we have signed on as an endorser of the Interfaith Boycott Coalition. For more information, see Code Pink's SodaStream page.
UUs Support Palestinian Rights with Petition to TIAA-CREF
Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East (UUJME) has begun a campaign asking UUs to sign a petition to investment giant TIAA-CREF calling on it to divest from companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
Read more about the campaign here.
UUJME has a Facebook Page and Twitter account!
Check out UUJME's Facebook page and let us know what you think. Please click our "Like" button if you like what you see!
Also follow us on Twitter, twitter.com/uujme!
Letter to Congress by 15 Christian Leaders
On October 5, 2012, fifteen Christian leaders wrote a letter to Congress urging an end to unconditional military aid to Israel. Read the letter here...
Print the TIAA-CREF Divestment Petition
Petitions can be printed out here.
Electronically Sign the TIAA-CREF Petition
Add your electronic signature to the petition here.