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Yair Lapid, Diaspora’s New Menachem Begin

14 6 0
22.06.2021

It takes time for new administrations to implement their new policies, especially in non-partisan institutions. Yet within less than 24 hours of being installed as Israel’s Foreign Minister and alternate Prime Minister, Israeli embassies around the world sent the following message from FM Lapid to local Jewish community leaders stating:

“The support of Christian evangelicals and other groups is important and heart-warming, but the Jewish people are more than allies; they are family. Jews from all streams, Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox, are our family. And family is always the most important relationship, and the one that needs to be worked on more than any other.”

This highly unusual message echoed the spirit of Menachem Begin and his unique approach to diaspora Jewry. Begin did not see in his commitment to the entirety of the Jewish people a political convenience or an electoral asset—it was rather a moral obligation. It was who he was rather than what he needed. Menachem Begin’s famous speech electrifying Israel with the words “Yehudim! Achim!— Jews! Brothers!” has electrified Israel at the time and highlighted the need for unity between Mizrachi Jews and Ashkenazi Jews. Begin also pioneered the need to bring harmony between religious and non-religious, Diaspora and Israeli Jews. Lapid has played the same historic role.

Tragically, Lapid’s message has been anything other than obvious. Over the past few years, Israeli policy has become more and more comfortable with the idea of writing off Jews it did not need politically and shifting its focus to Evangelical Christians. The raw truth which many of us have suspected for a while had erupted when former Israeli Ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, explicitly articulated it when speaking at Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon’s conference on Israel-Diaspora relations.

In a jaw-dropping interview, Dermer said that Israel should be investing much more in Evangelical Christians as opposed to American Jews, who are often among Israel’s most fierce critics. “People have to understand that the backbone of Israel’s support in the United States is the evangelical Christians. It’s true because of numbers and also because of their passionate and unequivocal support for Israel”.

In a jaw-dropping interview Former Israeli ambassador in Washington Ron Dermer tells @amit_segal the backbone of Israel’s support in the U.S. is the evangelical Christians and not American Jews @MakorRishon pic.twitter.com/g8UASanwDx

— Yonit Levi (@LeviYonit) May 9, 2021

In a jaw-dropping interview Former Israeli ambassador in Washington Ron Dermer tells @amit_segal the backbone of Israel’s support in the U.S. is the evangelical Christians and not American Jews @MakorRishon pic.twitter.com/g8UASanwDx

— Yonit Levi (@LeviYonit) May 9, 2021

Had Dermer just got up and........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)


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