I’ve been saddled with a major case of FOMO (fear of missing out). I watched as Facebook lit up with picture after picture of AIPAC’s Israel Village and its policy conference’s incredible speakers and sessions, plus the best part of all — the shmoozing and bonding with people from all walks of life united by a common passion and commitment to Israel.
Although I’m doing fine, I’m not quite back to a normal routine since the concussion I sustained, so I couldn’t go to AIPAC as planned.
It was wonderful to see all the Israel love and support pour out in full force. Friends from my current Upper West Side neighborhood — including Rabbi Mark Wildes of the Manhattan Jewish Experience, who met with Rep. Ellison, and Rabbi Avi Heller, originally from my hometown of Denver.
Our little (compared to the bigger Jewishly populated cities, at least) Denver, you did me proud. As the Facebook updates kept increasing, so did my pride in our Denver Jewish community.
As a Jewish woman who is part of the Orthodox community, I am heartened at the unity we can share in support of the crucial issue of out time: Israel. Many of us may have different beliefs about the path we feel is best for our beloved Israel; but there is no conflict about Israel herself. We are all part of a pro-Israel family.
By coming to AIPAC we demonstrate an understanding that we must fight for Israel, because on some level it comes down to “ein li eretz acheret” — knowing in our generation the cost of a world without Israel.
If I were not personally aware of the diversity of people I know who are part of AIPAC, then based on the usual distorted media spin, I would think AIPAC was an extremist right-wing think tank or lobbying group.
Hating Israel seems to be in vogue; it’s the group think of our time. We had J Street and (the misleadingly named) Jewish Voices for Peace; now there’s “If Not Now,” another anti-Israel group. These people have distorted reality so badly that aside from the ignorance, there is the added false arrogance and condescension, since in their indoctrinated minds their beliefs are in the name of moral clarity.
To dialogue with others in our community about different paths and possibilities for Israel and the dignity of the Palestinians is one thing — in fact, it’s a healthy and vital conversation. But for actual moral clarity, this year’s AIPAC assembly was worth it if only for the words of superstar Nikki Haley.
You want moral clarity in our time? You want courageous leadership in the face of corrupt despots? Look no further than Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, the Daniel Patrick Moynihan and Jean Kirkpatrick of our time.
Like many, I have been following her since her first press conference at the U.N. And I missed the chance to meet her at AIPAC! She is a force. I am in awe of her.
For missing Nikki Haley’s speech, my AIPAC FOMO is still raging.
Copyright Intermountain Jewish News