On Tuesday, March 29th, New York Jewish Agenda (NYJA) hosted our first ever in-person event, (we launched in March 2020 at the onset of the pandemic). We are so grateful to NYJA Board Member Susan Wagner and her husband Alan Klinger, who hosted Israel’s Minister for Regional Cooperation, Esawi Frej, at their home on the Upper East Side. He spoke to a packed house that included members of our NYJA Leaders Network. This was the Minister’s first trip to the U.S. in this role, and he shared his perspective on the significance of his role in the Cabinet as crucial to the preservation of democracy in Israel. You can listen to Minister Frej’s remarks by clicking here.
Speaking about the terrible attacks in Israel this past week and the tragic loss of life, Minister Frej emphasized that it is incumbent on all of us to work to promote greater Jewish-Arab unity and understanding in Israel. And his point was underscored by the fact that one of those killed in the devastating attack in B’nai B’rak was an Israeli Arab police officer.
Our event brought together a range of individuals from our pluralistic and diverse New York Jewish community, including several young up-and-coming leaders. I can’t imagine a better special guest for our first event than someone who is working hard to support the values that are at NYJA’s core. A number of individuals commented to me after the event that the event underscored NYJA’s importance. We will continue our advocacy and education work, as NYJA works to promote a democratic and just solution to the conflict in Israel by supporting efforts to strengthen the relationships of Jews and Arabs living in Israel.