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Matching Funds Available for City Council Campaigns to End Aid to Israel!

by Josh Ruebner, National Advocacy Director
January 12th, 2012

Together we've campaigned to end U.S. military aid to Israel for 10 years, and particularly $30 billion of taxpayer-funded weapons to Israel (budgeted 2009-2018) since that deal was inked five years ago. We're organizing to end these weapons transfers both because of their horrific enabling of Israel's human rights abuses of Palestinians and because this money would be much better spent to fund unmet community needs.

Get everything you need to organize in your communityWhile we will continue to press the President and Congress to hold Israel accountable for its misuse of U.S. weapons in violation of U.S. laws, we're also now taking our campaign to the local level, and working with our coalition member groups to pass city council resolutions to end U.S. aid to Israel and redirect that money to meet urgent community needs.

Why?  Congress and the President are beholden to contributions from the Israel lobby and the very same weapons manufacturers that directly profit from Israel's injuring and killing of Palestinians. No wonder we have difficulty making our voices heard in special interest-dominated Washington, DC.  But our local communities and decision-makers are more accessible and amenable to our message as our cities struggle with overburdened infrastructures, unmet social needs, and rising debt.

Take, for example, a typical mid-size city like Ft. Wayne, IN (population 253,691). Its residents will pay $40.9 million in federal taxes for weapons to Israel between 2009 and 2018. With that same money, nearly 500 low-income families in Ft. Wayne could get affordable housing each year!  Let's make these trade-offs clear to people in our cities and find out if they prefer to Fund Community Needs, or Israel's Misdeeds. (You can find the numbers for your own city here on our new interactive web app.)

To help launch city council campaigns to pass resolutions to end U.S. aid to Israel, we're very excited to announce a matching funds competition for member groups of the US Campaign. An all-star panel of judges will select up to five local groups to receive up to $7,500 total in matching funds, to double the impact of their organizing efforts. Check out the guidelines, expectations, and application, and be sure to have your local group submit an application before our February 19 deadline.

We are here to support your local organizing efforts with an organizing how-to guide, draft resolution, template resources, website and media support, and more.

For those who live in or near Milwaukee, WI, please join us on Sunday, February 12, for an all-day training and strategy session on campaigning locally to end military aid to Israel. Click here for more details and to register.  To have us come to your city to train your group and strategize with you to launch a city council campaign, please contact us!

Above: Click to sign up for a FREE packet 

Also sign up for a free organizing packet to educate and organize people in your community to end U.S. aid to Israel.  We've got lots of great new resources to help you organize, including posters, stickers, flyers, postcards and more. When you sign up to organize with us, you'll be joining more than 2,000 people in 49 states and nearly 950 cities.

Thank you for your ongoing efforts to end U.S. military aid to Israel and to change our country's policy to support freedom, justice, and equality for Palestinians instead of Israeli occupation and apartheid.