Committee for Justice and Peace in the Holy Land
The Committee for Justice and Peace in the Holy Land, was an organization founded in February, 1948 by Virginia Gildersleeve
Virginia Gildersleeve
Virginia Crocheron Gildersleeve was an American academic, the long-time Dean of Barnard College, and the sole female US delegate to the April 1945 San Francisco United Nations Conference on International Organization, which negotiated the UN Charter and created the United...

 and Kermit Roosevelt, Jr.
Kermit Roosevelt, Jr.
Kermit "Kim" Roosevelt, Jr. , was a political action officer of the Central Intelligence Agency's Directorate of Plans who coordinated the Operation Ajax, which aimed to orchestrate a coup d’état against Iran's prime minister, Mohammed Mosaddeq, and return Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran,...

 for the purpose of lobbying
Anti-Israel lobby in the United States
The anti-Israel lobby is a term used by some who criticize those groups and individuals that oppose Israeli policies or United States foreign policy which they consider to be too favorable towards Israel. Those opposed to such policies state that they seek a more "even-handed" U.S...

 the Truman administration to oppose the creation of the state of Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 and lobbying the United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 to "reconsider its disastrous decision" to divide the land west of the Jordan River into two states, one Jewish and one Arab.


Barnard College
Barnard College
Barnard College is a private women's liberal arts college and a member of the Seven Sisters. Founded in 1889, Barnard has been affiliated with Columbia University since 1900. The campus stretches along Broadway between 116th and 120th Streets in the Morningside Heights neighborhood in the borough...

 Dean Emeritus Virginia Gildersleeve was Chairman, the Former President of the Union Theological Seminary
Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York
Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York is a preeminent independent graduate school of theology, located in Manhattan between Claremont Avenue and Broadway, 120th to 122nd Streets. The seminary was founded in 1836 under the Presbyterian Church, and is affiliated with nearby Columbia...

  Henry Sloane Coffin
Henry Sloane Coffin
Henry Sloane Coffin was president of the Union Theological Seminary, Moderator of the Presbyterian Church USA, and one of the most famous ministers in the U.S...

 was Vice Chairman, and Kermit Roosevelt, grandson of President Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States . He is noted for his exuberant personality, range of interests and achievements, and his leadership of the Progressive Movement, as well as his "cowboy" persona and robust masculinity...

, was the Committee's Executive Director.

The Committee was later folded into the American Friends of the Middle East
American Friends of the Middle East
-History:In 1951, columnist Dorothy Thompson, together with 24 American educators, theologians, and writers including Harry Emerson Fosdick founded the American Friends of the Middle East. Kermit Roosevelt, Jr...



The Committee lobbied both the United States government and the United Nations to rescind the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine, which proposed the creation of two states in the Middle East, one Arab and one Jewish, in favor of leaving the entire area under Arab rule with no provision for a national home for the Jewish people.

Gildersleeve proposed that the large number of Jewish displaced persons
Sh'erit ha-Pletah
Sh'erit ha-Pletah is a biblical term used by Jewish survivors of the Nazi Holocaust to refer to themselves and the communities they formed following their liberation in the spring of 1945....

 living in European Displaced Persons camp
Displaced persons camp
A displaced persons camp or DP camp is a temporary facility for displaced persons coerced into forced migration. The term is mainly used for camps established after World War II in West Germany and in Austria, as well as in the United Kingdom, primarily for refugees from Eastern Europe and for the...

s be resettled elsewhere, with the United States admitting 200,000, and each member state of the new United Nations taking "its proportionate share." She accepted at face value the fact that "The Arab nations have already offered to accept their share."

Political positions

According to Gildersleeve, "The Zionist plan was directly contrary to our national interests, military, strategic, and commercial, as well as to common justice." She blamed the Committee's failure to prevent the creation of the State of Israel on "the Zionist control of the media of communication."

On the other side, Martin Marty described the members of the Committee as, "the usual company of anti-Zionists
Anti-Zionism is opposition to Zionistic views or opposition to the state of Israel. The term is used to describe various religious, moral and political points of view in opposition to these, but their diversity of motivation and expression is sufficiently different that "anti-Zionism" cannot be...

," including under this description, in addition to Gildersleeve and Roosevelt, "an editor of The Christian Century
The Christian Century
The Christian Century is a Christian magazine based in Chicago, Illinois. Considered the flagship magazine of U.S. mainline Protestantism, the biweekly reports on religious news; comments on theological, moral, and cultural issues; and reviews books, movies, and music...

," members of the American Council for Judaism
American Council for Judaism
The American Council for Judaism is an organization of American Jews committed to the proposition that Jews are not a nationality but merely a religious group, adhering to the original stated principles of Reform Judaism, as articulated in the 1885 Pittsburgh Platform.The ACJ was founded in June...

, and Harry Emerson Fosdick
Harry Emerson Fosdick
Harry Emerson Fosdick was an American clergyman. He was born in Buffalo, New York. He graduated from Colgate University in 1900, and Union Theological Seminary in 1904. While attending Colgate University he joined the Delta Upsilon Fraternity. He was ordained a Baptist minister in 1903 at the...

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