Shabbat with AIPAC

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One insight of mine after spending an entire Shabbat with the AIPAC delegation, who are now visiting in Israel, was that I was surprised about how little I know about the activity of this pro-Israel lobby. For almost 70 years they get up every morning in America and act within the administration there, only for the sake of the State of Israel – economically, diplomatically, militarily and in every other explicit way and behind the scenes. Their lobby is considered to be almost the strongest one in America (“Only the lobby of small arms and light weapon traders is ahead of us”, they told me there, with a wry smile…).
I met a physician from Kansas who, in his free time, fights against the anti-Israeli media bias. I met a husband and wife who debate whether to make Aliyah to Israel, because they think that their mission today, working with congress members, is very important too.
But the main thing – during such times, as there is a huge abyss separating Republicans and Democrats, they explained to me how crucial it is that the Jewish-Israeli-Zionist interest remains a common principle of both parties. One should never think that Israel is just a Republican matter. One should never think that if you are a Democrat, then your Jewish identity and your support of Israel are “out”. Supporting this amazing process of the return of the People of Israel to their Land should be common to everyone, despite the many other disputes.
During Kabbalat Shabbat (the prayer of receiving of the Shabbat, we sang in the liturgical hymn Lecha Dodi the words “ימין ושמאל תפרוצי” – “To the right and left you’ll spread forth”. The Jewish story is much bigger and more important than the Left-Right disputes. It really is above them.

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