Barack Mandela
Barack Mandela
American Soldier/Israeli Soldier

Peace Prophet: Letter to President Joe Biden

Your Excellency President Joe Biden:

It is the highest honor to write you this public letter. As a former soldier in the United States Army and current member of the American Legion veteran’s organization, I am humbled to write this letter to you in your capacity as commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the United States. Although I recognize you, Mr. President, have an important and substantial role as national chief executive, I sincerely request a reply to this public letter.

Mr. President, approximately seventy-seven per cent of American Jews voted for Biden-Harris in the 2020 elections. Our community demonstrated strong support for your vision, values, and policies, and we look forward to long-term cooperation based upon shared values and mutual respect.

The American Jewish community has been in America since prior to the colonial period. Our community manifests a diverse range of Jewish cultural traditions, including the full spectrum of Jewish religious observance. We look forward to multi-faceted relationships with the Biden-Harris administration.

President Biden, we encourage you to organize summit meetings with the diverse and inclusive leadership of major American Jewish organizations including: the World Jewish Congress (WJC), American Jewish Committee (AJC), American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Hadassah, Jewish National Fund (JNF), Jewish Agency (JA), Black Jewish Entertainment Alliance, Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), National Conference of Synagogue Youth (NCSY),  United Synagogue Youth (USY), Orthodox Union (OU), Agudat Yisrael (AY), and the Union of Reform Judaism (URJ). This series of strategic summit meetings would be called “The Presidential American Jewish Summit Meetings (2022)”.

The Biden administration has clearly demonstrated its commitment to combating anti-Semitism in part by nominating Professor Deborah E. Lipstadt as United States Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating anti-Semitism. Lipstadt, who is a professor at Emory University, was a consultant to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and recently published the highly respected book “Antisemitism: Here and Now”. The world Jewish community looks forward to working with Professor Lipstadt in our struggle to defeat hatred, racism, discrimination, and anti-Semitism.

President Biden, we hope you empower the Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism which is part of the Office of Religion and Global Affairs (S/RGA) at the United States Department of State. We ask for a significant increase in the budget for this office, and we ask for close cooperation with the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) as your administration advocates policies on anti-Semitism both in the United States and internationally and develops policies to support efforts to combat anti-Semitism.

We, the Jewish people, would like to thank you for meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at the White House. This high-level meeting helped to solidify and strengthen the US-Israeli strategic partnership while promoting shared cultural, social, security, and economic interests.

In addition, we—the Jewish people—are deeply concerned with the so-called “Iran Nuclear Deal” which is formally know as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which was agreed upon in Vienna on July 14, 2015, between Iran, China, France, Russia, United States, United Kingdom, and Germany together with the European Union, the P5+1. On May 8, 2018, then President Donald Trump officially withdrew the United States from the Iran nuclear deal and signed a Presidential Memorandum ordering the reinstatement of harsher sanctions.

President Biden, while your administration strategizes on your future policy towards Iran and the nuclear deal, we encourage you to cooperate with members of the Persian Jewish (Iranian Jewish) community. Today, the vast majority of Persian Jews live in Israel and the United States. Such interfaith cooperation will help the Biden administration develop culturally sensitive, culturally informed polices towards the Iranian regime based upon deep understanding of Iranian history, language, and traditions.

The long-term relationship between the Biden-Harris administration and the Jewish community is strong. We look forward to building our future relationship based upon the Jewish principle of “Shalom Bayt” which means peaceful co-existence and harmonious cooperation. I look forward to meeting with your staff to discuss these matters.

Respectfully, Barack O. Mandela, Esq.

Mr. Barack Mandela, a human rights attorney, earned a Juris Doctor from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. This “Peace Prophet” project was launched in August 2021 as an international effort to promote human rights, peace, mercy, grace, and fundamental freedom. This global peace mission was inspired by American peace activist, “Peace Pilgrim” who passed away in 1981.

About the Author
Licensed Attorney. I earned a Doctor of Law at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law (1997). I earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California, Riverside (1994). I was an international student at the University of Costa Rica Faculty of Law (1991-1992) and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Faculty of Law (Summer 1996). I am a military veteran of both the United States Army and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). I am a laureate of the National Defense Service Medal from the Pentagon (2006). I am a financial donor to following: Harvard Law, Yale Law, Stanford Law, Berkeley Law, UC Hastings College of the Law, UC Davis Law, Columbine High School, Choate Rosemary Hall, Phillips Exeter Academy, Sidwell Friends School, Viewpoint School, Beverly Hills High School, Eton College in the United Kingdom, Special Olympics, Children's Defense Fund, Obama Foundation, Clinton Foundation, Barbra Streisand Foundation, and the British Red Cross. I am former special assistant and staff attorney to Governor Pete Wilson of California. I was public affairs assistant to US Senator Barbara Boxer and Mayor Ehud Olmert of Jerusalem and Jerusalem spokesperson Haggai Elias.
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