Shoring up support

The 10/7 Project, a joint PR effort by Jewish groups on behalf of Israel, begins to take shape

Initiative organized by JFNA, AJC, ADL, Conference of Presidents and AIPAC, will be run by three public affairs firms, led by a former lobbyist

The 10/7 Project, a new joint initiative by five large American Jewish groups, will be run by three public affairs consulting firms from across the political spectrum. The project is beginning with the launch of a daily newsletter, followed by broader communications-related efforts, those involved told eJewishPhilanthropy.

The 10/7 Project was announced last week by the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Jewish Federations of North America, Anti-Defamation League, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and American Jewish Committee. It will be run by the political and public relations consultants SKDK, OnMessage Public Strategies and CKR Solutions.

“The 10/7 Project is committed to promoting continued bipartisan support for Israel by pushing for accurate and complete coverage of the Israel-Hamas war,” Josh Isay, executive director of the project and the former CEO of SKDK, told eJP. 

“Our efforts to set the record straight and combat misinformation spouted by Hamas terrorists and their anti-Israel allies have been met with widespread enthusiasm… We look forward to continuing to do the critically important work of providing policymakers and the American public with reliable information about Israel and Hamas, and uplifting the stories of the innocent victims of the October 7th massacre.”

The effort comes as the number of American lawmakers calling for a cease-fire in Gaza has grown to 43 and as the Biden administration — while still publicly backing Israel — is putting greater pressure on the Israel Defense Forces to limit the number of civilian casualties in Gaza. It also comes as a new Wall Street Journal poll shows that the majority of Americans sympathize with Israel significantly more than the Palestinians in the war in Gaza. 

The 10/7 Project is meant to have broad appeal, billing itself as “bipartisan.”

“It’s including Republicans, Democrats and others,” William Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents and former deputy executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, told eJP. “The idea is that it’s not partisan so it’s including people from every ideological outlook.” 

Ted Deutch, CEO of AJC and a former Democratic congressman from South Florida, echoed the nonpartisan nature of the project. “[It] puts politics aside to come together to ensure the facts are getting out there as Israel defends itself,” he told eJP. 

“This is not a political effort. The 10/7 Project is focused only on ensuring that the facts get out there. It’s about support for Israel,” Deutch said, noting that the project does not endorse or oppose any candidates for public office. “The project represents a powerful statement from the organized Jewish world in coming together at this time to combat misinformation, and it’s an effort that reflects the unity we are seeing among the Jewish people right now.” 

According to the project’s organizers, the initiative was spurred by the desire to ensure accurate and complete coverage of the Israel-Hamas conflict. Its launch follows the mass turnout of nearly 300,000 last month at a pro-Israel rally in Washington organized by JFNA and Conference of Presidents.  

Since its launch on Dec. 5, The 10/7 Project has started distributing a daily newsletter for journalists called “The 10/7 Project Daybook,” an echo of the Associated Press Daybook, featuring links to articles — mostly from American and Israeli outlets — about the war and rising antisemitism.

Isay declined to say how many people have so far signed up for the newsletter, but told eJP that there are “far more subscribers to The 10/7 Project Daybook than we anticipated we would have at this early stage.”

The effort, according to a statement, will “focus on fact-based coverage of the Israel-Hamas war, aggressive rapid response, and a media campaign dedicated to reminding policymakers and the broader American public about the more than 100 hostages still held by Hamas terrorists; uplifting the stories of the innocent victims of October 7; setting the record straight about the conflict in Israel and Gaza; and combating misinformation spouted by Hamas terrorists and their anti-Israel allies.” 

Daroff said the joint project is meant to bring together the organizations involved to “engage with the public on behalf of ensuring that the true story of what’s happening in Israel is highlighted with a centralized communications operation… in order to ensure fact based coverage of the war.” 

He added that “a coterie of philanthropists,” whom he did not name, will contribute funding “to ensure we are in a place to push forward this messaging,” but added that “we are willing and interested in more philanthropic support.”