Rex Tillerson on Israel
Churches for Middle East Peace Executive Director Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon provides insight into why Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's recent decision to eliminate the Office of Religion and Global Affairs (RGA) raises concerns in American faith communities. "RGA has historically increased the ability of Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and other faith leaders to contribute in-depth analysis and information to help shape U.S. policy approaches that benefit from the wisdom of religious actors. In addition, RGA has provided space for marginalized peoples, including women and ethnic minorities, to contribute their voices into government and civil society spaces that have at times been hostile," writes Rev. Dr. Cannon.
This is not the only situation where the decision of the Trump administration to leave a large number of jobs unfilled is affecting women, minorities and religious communities. The marginalized are often being cut off in the name of saving money.
President Trump talks about moving the American embassy form Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Such a move would be strongly opposed by a number of religious groups working for peace in the Middle East.
With unfilled positions in the United States government, religious leaders have little means to be part of the conversation. Where issues are primarily being driven by religion, religious leaders need to be part of the conversation.