WASHINGTON — The American Task Force on Palestine, a group known for working together with Jewish groups, is downsizing because of the faltering peace process.
Ziad Asali, ATFP’s founder, said his organization canceled its annual gala because backers were increasingly pessimistic about the prospects of the two-state solution they favored. The gala, which usually takes place in the fall, comprises 50 percent of fundraising for ATFP’s annual $1 million budget.
“We see disheartened two-staters,” Asali, a Jerusalem-born doctor, told JTA, after Buzzfeed first reported the story. “The guys who have come to the conclusion that it ain’t gonna happen now.”
Asali said another factor was the difficulties the group faced among Arab Americans, who are generally skeptical of the cooperation that he practiced with pro-Israel and Jewish groups, among them, Americans For Peace Now, with which ATFP runs a joint intern program, and The Israel Project.
“We’ve had financial difficulties from day one,” he said. “Because of what we say and how we say it, and the prevailing mood of the community’s thinking is ‘them vs. us,’ a zero sum game. We brought in another dynamic, we understood it was not going to be popular.”