Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Conference of Presidents: American-Israeli Unity Strong As Ever

February 14, 2013 1:09 am 1 comment

Malcolm Hoenlein and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: Anav Silverman/Tazpit News Agency

‘Unity’ was one word that often came up during the 39th annual mission of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations held at Jerusalem’s Inbal Hotel, where 110 American Jewish leaders gathered together for meetings and conferences with Israeli figures throughout the week.

The annual mission, whose primary aim is to strengthen ties between the US Jewish community and Israeli leaders and policy makers, emphasized the close ties between American Jewish leaders and Israel.  “This Conference is designed to allow us to hear Israel’s political, military and social leaders so we can devise specific ways to proactively work together to strengthen Israel…” said Malcolm Hoenlein, the executive vice chairman of the conference.

“There are 52 major Jewish organizations represented here. Our umbrella organization, which was established in the 1955, has everyone from the Anti-Defamation League to Peace Now,” Hoenlein told Tazpit News Agency.  “We come from all religious and political spectrums from across the US.”

In light of the upcoming visit of President Barack Obama. and the new Israeli government in formation under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the conference also stressed the unbreakable relationship between the United States and Israel.

Columbia University Professor Richard Stone, Chairman of the Conference of Presidents believes that the relationship between the current US presidency and Israel remains strong. “I reject the idea that there is a strained relationship between Israel and the United States,” he told reporters during a press conference on Tuesday, February 12.

Hoenlein, a veteran observer of Washington policies, believes that Obama’s visit to Israel “can be an opportunity to build between the two sides. I don’t think he [Obama] will propose or impose a plan [on Israel],” he noted in an exclusive interview with Tazpit News Agency.

“Not a week goes by where, when there isn’t a visit from a key Israeli official to the US. Both countries do so much together and share important goals,” Hoenlein said.

During the conference, key political figures detailed those goals which included preventing Iran enriching uranium for its nuclear weapons program.

US Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro told the audience on Monday, February 11, that US-led sanctions against Iran were crippling its economy and that “we will not let up until we achieve our goal of stopping a nuclear armed Iran.” He also added that “no options are off the table including a military option.”

If Iran were to become nuclear, it “would threaten the US and its allies in the region, spark a nuclear arms race in the volatile Middle East and threaten freedom of navigation in the Gulf,” elaborated the ambassador.

Shapiro also noted that President Obama was the fourth-sitting US President to ever visit Israel in office and that the ambassador was “thrilled” of the upcoming visit.

When asked about President Obama’s controversial nomination of Chuck Hagel for Pentagon chief, Shapiro portrayed Hagel as someone “deeply committed to Israeli security and the President’s policy to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.”

Following the US ambassador, Prime Minister Netanyahu also voiced his welcome for President Obama’s visit, stating that “…this is a wonderful opportunity to reaffirm the strategic relationship between Israel and the United States.” The Prime Minister mentioned that there were three main subjects that he would bring up during the president’s visit including “Iran, Syria, and the pursuit of peace.”
Netanyahu emphasized the importance of unity in the face of ongoing global terrorism, as well as in the face of Israel’s “enormous external challenges and great internal challenges.”

“We’ll achieve a government here that maximizes unity, and I know that we’ll work together with you to maximize Jewish unity, in the United States, in the Jewish communities around the world and here in Israel to secure the future of the one and only Jewish state,” Netanyahu told the American Jewish leaders.

To end the evening on a lighter note, Hoenlein presented the Israeli Prime Minister with a newly printed Book of Genesis, Beresheit, and a Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl t-shirt.

1 Comment

  • So, what you’re saying is that all the American Jewish organizations have united in their decision to NOT oppose the nomination of Chuck Hagel?

    Let’s hope that American Jewish leaders do not represent American Jews.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Blogs Book Reviews Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW)

    Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW)

    It is cocktail hour on an April afternoon in 2004. The sun is hot on Amsterdam’s canals, and I am sitting at Café den Leeuw on the Herengracht with Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Hirsi Ali is still a member of the Dutch Parliament, and we talk about Islam. Specifically, we talk about the concept of “moderate Islam,” or what she calls “liberal Islam.” And she has one word for it. “It’s absurd,” she says. “It’s complete nonsense. There is no ‘liberal […]

    Read more →
  • Food Jewish Identity A Look at the Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook (REVIEW)

    A Look at the Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook (REVIEW)

    Everybody knows that cooking varies from country to country. There are Italian restaurants, Chinese restaurants, etc. We associate different styles of cuisine with different languages. Do we also think of the association of different cuisines with different dialects? We should, because cooking also varies from region to region. Litvaks and Galitsyaners have their own traditions of preparing gefilte fish. Marvin I. Herzog, in his book The Yiddish Language in Northern Poland: Its Geography and History (Indiana University, Bloomington, and Mouton & Co., The […]

    Read more →
  • Relationships US & Canada Analysis: Jewish Women Less Likely Than Catholics to Take Husband’s Name

    Analysis: Jewish Women Less Likely Than Catholics to Take Husband’s Name

    An analysis of New York Times wedding announcements showed that women married in Jewish ceremonies were less likely to take their husband’s last names than those married in Roman Catholic ceremonies, the Times reported on Saturday. The largest gap between the two groups was in 1995 when 66 percent of Catholic women took their husband’s names and 33 percent of Jewish women did the same. Nearly half of the women featured in the publication’s wedding pages since 1985 took their husband’s name after marriage, while about […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Jerry Lewis, Legendary Jewish Comic and Humanitarian, Stays Relevant at 89

    Jerry Lewis, Legendary Jewish Comic and Humanitarian, Stays Relevant at 89

    JNS.org – Through appreciation of both his comedy and humanitarian work, legendary Jewish entertainer Jerry Lewis is staying relevant at age 89. The only comic to ever be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, Lewis added another award to his trophy case in April, when he received the 2015 Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). Gordon Smith, NAB’s president and CEO, said the organization was “honored to recognize not only [Lewis’s] comedic innovation, but also his remarkable […]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports Israeli Gymnasts Win Bronze, Silver Medals at 2015 European Games in Baku

    Israeli Gymnasts Win Bronze, Silver Medals at 2015 European Games in Baku

    Israeli athletes marked a successful day on Sunday, as gymnasts won multiple bronze and silver medals in the 2015 European Games in Baku. The Gymnastics team won two silver medals and one bronze in group events, while Neta Rivkin, an Israeli Olympic gymnast, won bronze for the Solo Hoops event. Sunday’s gymnastics wins follow Sergey Richter’s bronze on June 16 for the Men’s 10 meter air-rifle, and Ilana Kratysh’s silver for women’s freestyle wrestling. The 2015 European Games in Baku are […]

    Read more →
  • Theater Report Highlights Success of Russian-Jewish-American Ballroom Dancers

    Report Highlights Success of Russian-Jewish-American Ballroom Dancers

    Russian-American Jews are some of the most successful ballroom dancing competitors in the U.S., South Dakota Public Broadcasting (SDPB) Radio reported on Thursday. Jonathan Sarna, a professor of Jewish history at Brandeis University, said their success can be traced back to Jewish discrimination in the former Soviet Union. Because of the prejudice they faced, Russian Jews had to perform better than their peers in every field, including dancing, in order to have a chance of getting ahead. “They knew that if they […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada Israeli Dancer With Shofar, Prayer Shawl Wows ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Judges (VIDEO)

    Israeli Dancer With Shofar, Prayer Shawl Wows ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Judges (VIDEO)

    An Israeli dancer made use of Jewish props in an extraordinary routine that left judges amazed when he auditioned for season 12 of TV dance competition So You Think You Can Dance on Monday. At first, the panel of judges appeared confused when Asaf Goren, 23, began his audition in Los Angeles with a tallit (prayer shawl) over his head and the blowing of a shofar, which he explained “opens the sky” for people’s prayers. However, as soon as he started his “Hebrew breaking” performance, […]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada Jewish Hoops Fairytale Falls Short as David Blatt’s Cavaliers Drop Game 6

    Jewish Hoops Fairytale Falls Short as David Blatt’s Cavaliers Drop Game 6

    JNS.org – A fairytale ending to Jewish basketball coach David Blatt’s first season in the National Basketball Association (NBA) was not meant to be, as the Blatt-led Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night dropped Game 6 of the NBA Finals to the Golden State Warriors, 105-97, to lose the best-of-seven series 4-2. Blatt, who just last year coached Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv franchise to a European basketball championship, failed to finish a second straight hoops season on top. But after the Cavaliers began the NBA […]

    Read more →