98 leading Hollywood Jews endorse Iran nuke deal in open letter

98 leading Hollywood Jews endorse Iran nuke deal in open letter

‘Mad Men’ creator Matthew Weiner, ‘Game of Thrones’ executive producer Carolyn Strauss among showbiz bigwigs arguing accord is in US and Israeli best interests

Matthew Weiner (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
Matthew Weiner (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

A group of prominent American Jews, many with links to Hollywood, have signed an open letter urging Congress to back the Iran nuclear deal, the Hollywood Reporter said Wednesday.

Labeling attempts to shoot down the accord as “a tragic mistake,” the petition, whose signatories include “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner, “Game of Thrones” executive producer Carolyn Strauss and veteran TV writer-producer Norman Lear, is due to appear as a full-page ad in the LA Jewish Journal’s Thursday edition.

“As American Jewish supporters of Israel, we strongly encourage Congress to approve … the Iran nuclear agreement,” the letter reads, adding that the pact serves “the best interest of the United States and Israel.”

“We appreciate that many have reasonable concerns about the risks of an agreement,” the statement concedes, but terms support for the deal “the best option” currently available to hinder Iran’s nuclear weapons drive.

Carolyn Strauss (Gage Skidmore / Wikipedia)
Carolyn Strauss (Gage Skidmore / Wikipedia)

Additional signatories include former US secretary of commerce Mickey Kantor, philanthropist Eli Broad, billionaire Qualcomm founder Irwin Jacobs, architect Frank Gehry and former Walt Disney trustee Stanley Gold, along with a slew of rabbis, former politicians and businessmen.

The nuclear accord has largely polarized American Jewry, with a number of high-profile Jewish individuals, groups and senators opposing the deal, with others lining up in favor of it.

In Israel, a consensus of political figures, among them Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have come out as some of the deal’s fiercest critics, saying it will endanger Israel’s national security.

The US Congress is expected to vote on the agreement by September 17. A fiery battle between the Obama administration and the pro-Israel lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), is currently raging for Congressional votes on the matter.

So far, some three dozen House members, all Democrats, have announced support for the deal, along with nearly 20 Democratic senators. The most prominent opponent of the accord is Jewish Senator Chuck Schumer, who last week announced that he would vote against the deal.

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