ABC News covers the AP’s story:
A proposal to divest stock in protest of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians is moving forward at a national Presbyterian meeting.
A committee at the Presbyterian General Assembly approved a resolution Tuesday that would direct the church to liquidate its holdings in three companies whose products are used by the Israeli government in the occupied territories. The full General Assembly will vote on the proposal later this week.
The Jewish Daily Forward shares two stories on the measure. From the staff’s “Presbyterian Panel Approves Israel Divestment Proposal” story:
The Middle East Issues Committee in 45-20 vote on Tuesday at the church’s 221st General Assembly advanced the measure to divest from Caterpillar, Hewlett-Packard and Motorola Solutions…
At the 2012 church assembly, delegates rejected a divestment initiative by a vote of 333-331. Jewish-Presbyterian relations already were strained following the publication in January of a study guide created by the church’s Israel/Palestine Mission Network. The document, “Zionism Unsettled,” depicted Zionism as a false theology.
Meanwhile, a letter opposing divestment signed by more than 1,700 rabbis, cantors and Jewish seminary students is being circulated at the assembly. The open letter, which has signers from all 50 states and the major streams of Judaism, urges commissioners to reject divestment from companies operating in Israel and other anti-Israel resolutions.
Also, there was the related article from rabbi Margaret Holub, “I’m a Rabbi and I Support Presbyterian Israel Divestment”. From her article:
It is powerful and painful to hear the word of conscience spoken in our direction as Jews. But we would be wise to listen, or at least to show respect, to the testimony being voiced by this selective divestment overture.
The Presbyterian Church-USA has long used the placement of their material resources to speak their vision of justice. Over the past 30 years they have spoken the language of conscientious investment to oppose apartheid in South Africa, to call for mine safety in the U.S., to oppose certain kinds of weapon manufacture and trade and to protest unjust regimes in Burma and Sudan. This year, in addition to considering divestment from the three corporations involved in the occupation of Palestine, the PC-USA will also be hearing overtures to divest from drone manufacturers and fossil fuel developers.
Their process is elaborate, one might even say ponderous. The PC-USA has been involved in escalating steps of “corporate engagement” with these three companies about their enabling of the occupation for a decade, and they are only now at the point in their process of contemplating divestment.
I will be joining a rainbow of allies within and outside the PC-USA at their General Assembly in Detroit this week to support their overture for selective divestment. Along with my friends in Jewish Voice for Peace, I will be joining hands with Palestinian and Arab-Americans, members of other churches and of the Muslim community and a particular concentration of young religious and secular activists in support of the divestment overture. The Church will also be hearing from people in the American Jewish community who oppose this overture. It is a mark of the church’s integrity that their process is so open to input from people outside their own ranks.