Pro-justice advocacy group Jewish Voice For Peace has launched a campaign to convince young Jews not to participate in Birthright Israel trips, just as college students are returning to campus and registration for the winter visits gets underway. Under the slogan #ReturnTheBirthright, JVP is working to convince 18-26 year-old Jews eligible for the all-expenses paid 10-day tours to reject the tempting offer.
A “pledge” on its website takes the form of an online petition in which young Jews declare: “We will not go on a Birthright trip because it is fundamentally unjust that we are given a free trip to Israel, while Palestinian refugees are barred from returning to their homes. We refuse to be complicit in a propaganda trip that whitewashes the systemic racism, and the daily violence faced by Palestinians living under endless occupation. Our Judaism is grounded in values of solidarity and liberation, not occupation and apartheid. On these grounds we return the Birthright, and call on other young Jews to do the same.”
Read full report from Haaretz