An eight-member B’nai B’rith International delegation participated in meetings of the Zionist General Council that convened this week in Hadera, Israel under the title “Building One Nation.”
The meeting was launched in the Druze village of Hurfeish with a salute to the Druze minority for its contributions to the state, and included the adoption of wide-ranging constitutional amendments and discussion of the significance of the Declaration of Independence and new Jewish State Law for the future of the State of Israel.
Incoming Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog addressed the body, noting: “The Jewish people are on brink of a disaster; simple mathematics show that in two generations, only a fraction of the current Jewish population of the United States will remain Jewish.”
Herzog argued that to confront the crisis in Jewish identify, the gates that have made access to Judaism arduous should be opened, warning that separation between Israeli and American Jewry would be a disaster for the Jewish people.
The meetings also included panel discussions on Israel-Diaspora relation with Members of Knesset and with chairman of the Zionist Federations, among them Honorary B’nai B’rith President Richard Heideman, who is chairman of the American Zionist Movement.
Heideman called for a less vociferous discourse when representatives of the various political parties and organizations that make up the World Zionist Organization convene at meetings of the Zionist General Council. Members of the B’nai B’rith Delegation included B’nai B’rith International Executive Board of Directors member Ira Bartfield; B’nai B’rith Europe Board member Valerie Achache; B’nai B’rith World Center-Jerusalem Board Member Dr. Baruch Levy; B’nai B’rith Israel mentor Michael Natan; B’nai B’rith Israel President Dani Gratz; former Young Leadership Network Chair Elana Heideman; Batsheva Schwartz, young delegation member; and B’nai B’rith World Center-Jerusalem Director Alan Schneider, who coordinates B’nai B’rith activities at the National institutions (WZO, JAFI and KKL).
During his remarks, Herzog also congratulated B’nai B’rith International on its 175th anniversary.
Alan Schneider is the director of B’nai B’rith World Center in Jerusalem, which serves as the hub of B'nai B'rith International activities in Israel. The World Center is the key link between Israel and B'nai B'rith members and supporters around the world. To view some of his additional content, click here.
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