August 28, 2018
Contact: Herbert Block, AZM
ON KEY ANNIVERSARY, AMERICAN ZIONISTS ISSUE NEW “PRINCIPLES OF ZIONISM” STATEMENT AND “ZIONISM FORWARD” CAMPAIGN
The American Zionist Movement (AZM) marked the anniversary of the founding of the world Zionist movement by Theodor Herzl with a public release of its newly-adopted “Statement of Principles of Zionism” and its “Zionism Forward” campaign to promote it throughout the United States.
The Statement – full text below – was adopted by the Board of AZM, comprised of 28 national Jewish Zionist organizations. AZM works across a broad ideological, political and religious spectrum linking the American Jewish community together in support of Israel, Zionism and the Jewish People.
AZM President Richard D. Heideman said: “In recent weeks and months we have seen Zionism attacked and mischaracterized in America, Europe, and the Middle East, and by both public figures and those on university campuses. AZM believes it important for the public to know of the broad principles of Zionism on which diverse Jewish organizations have come together this summer. We have collectively rededicated ourselves to this movement and launched the ‘Zionism Forward’ campaign in order to strengthen support for Israel, the Jewish people and Zionism.”
Said Heideman: “Last year we marked 120 years of founding Zionist Congress in Basel. Today we also celebrate 120, a key number in Jewish tradition, as on August 28, 1898 the Second Zionist Congress convened (also in Basel). While the 1897 meeting launched the modern worldwide Zionist movement, the gathering a year later in 1898 showed that this movement was not just a one-time effort. It was this continuity and building of support for Zionism which AZM maintains today as we move Zionism Forward.”
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES OF ZIONISM
AS ADOPTED BY THE AZM NATIONAL BOARD – Summer 2018
The American Zionist Movement (AZM), comprising 28 national Jewish Zionist organizations, links the diverse American Jewish community in support of Israel, Zionism and the Jewish People. The AZM and its constituent organizations represent American Zionists within the National Institutions of Israel, including the World Zionist Organization (WZO). The AZM and its constituent organizations fully support and endorse The Jerusalem Program of the WZO, the global statement of the beliefs of the Zionist movement.1
The American Zionist Movement (AZM), through action and deed, supports these principles:
- The sovereign state of Israel’s unconditional right to exist as the Jewish democratic homeland;
- The right of the people of Israel to live in peace and security;
- Pride in the common history, culture, destiny and religious heritage of the Jewish people;
- Pride in Israel’s rich contributions to the world and its aspirational role to be an exemplary society for all of humanity; and
- Israel’s centrality to Jewish identity and life.
Zionism Forward is the AZM’s campaign to:
- Strengthen support for Israel, the Jewish people and Zionism.
- Celebrate the ideology and cause of Zionism.
- Help strengthen Israel’s position in the global family of nations.
- Improve the dialogue on Zionism in America and participate in a new effort to guide the American Jewish people to speak in a unified and informed voice in support of Zionism’s core principles.
- Provide the forum that fosters our diverse constituent Zionist organizations’ respectful coalescence around our commonality.
1The JERUSALEM PROGRAM is the official platform of the WORLD ZIONIST ORGANIZATION and the global Zionist movement, having been most recently amended and adopted in June 2004, as the successor statement to the “Basel Program” of 1897 adopted at the First Zionist Congress convened by Theodor Herzl. The Jerusalem Program states that:
Zionism, the national liberation movement of the Jewish people, brought about the establishment of the State of Israel, and views a Jewish, Zionist, democratic and secure State of Israel to be the expression of the common responsibility of the Jewish people for its continuity and future. The foundations of Zionism are:
- The unity of the Jewish people, its bond to its historic homeland Eretz Yisrael, and the centrality of the State of Israel and Jerusalem, its capital, in the life of the nation;
- Aliyah to Israel from all countries and the effective integration of all immigrants into Israeli society.
- Strengthening Israel as a Jewish, Zionist and democratic state and shaping it as an exemplary society with a unique moral and spiritual character, marked by mutual respect for the multi-faceted Jewish people, rooted in the vision of the prophets, striving for peace and contributing to the betterment of the world.
- Ensuring the future and the distinctiveness of the Jewish people by furthering Jewish, Hebrew and Zionist education, fostering spiritual and cultural values and teaching Hebrew as the national language;
- Nurturing mutual Jewish responsibility, defending the rights of Jews as individuals and as a nation, representing the national Zionist interests of the Jewish people, and struggling against all manifestations of anti-Semitism;
- Settling the country as an expression of practical Zionism.