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Reconstructionist Judaism has long viewed Israel as an essential element of Jewish peoplehood. Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan (1881-1983), the founder of Reconstructionism, supported a Zionism grounded in three core values: Jewish survival, Jewish cultural and religious renaissance, and Jewish ethical nationhood. He promoted a vision in which two vibrant centers of Jewish life – Israel and North America – would productively and fruitfully support, shape, and when needed, give feedback and critique to each other. Today the Reconstructionist movement includes congregations in Europe and South America as well, but the basic idea remain the same.  

Starting with little, what Israelis have achieved in just a few generations is astonishing. Israel has absorbed millions of Jews seeking refuge; revived the Hebrew language; shared breakthrough agricultural, medical, computer science, and communications technologies with the world; created the freest press in the Middle East; and maintained a parliamentary democracy with peaceful transitions of power from one election to the next. 

Our love for Israel exists alongside our desire to seek a just and lasting peace for Israelis and Palestinians. The central organizations of our movement have long advocated for a peace agreement that will protect Israelis’ security, end the Israeli military occupation, fulfill the legitimate national aspirations of the Palestinian people, and guarantee the human and civil rights of all involved.  

We hope you’ll explore the Israel section of our website with eyes that are open to both Israel’s wonders and its flaws, and with an appreciation of our tradition’s love of presenting multiple viewpoints.