Center for American Progress Absorbs Liberal Israel Group
Under a new accord taking effect on Jan. 1, the Center for American Progress will fold a progressive American Jewish nonprofit organization, the Israel Policy Forum, into its Mideast studies shop.
A letter sent today from Rudy DeLeon, a former senior Pentagon official who serves as CAP’s foreign policy chief, to the Israel Policy Forum’s leaders explained the merger would support the Obama administration’s flagging efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian negotiations for Palestinian statehood. “Uniting our efforts under the banner of Middle East Progress would leverage our ability to support U.S. policy, bring pragmatic voices into the debate and develop public support for sustained U.S. peacemaking efforts in the region,” DeLeon wrote. Middle East Progress plans to launch “events, publications and communications, trips to the region, and outreach” over the next year, and the Center for American Progress has “committed one third” of the bolstered organization’s budget.
An email from IPF’s Nick Bunzl to the organization’s supporters containing a copy of DeLeon’s letter stated, “The IPF team is very excited to be joining these and our other new colleagues in our shared mission ‘of supporting a comprehensive Middle East peace, including a two-state solution with a strong Israel and a viable Palestinian state.’”