In this episode of Pull Up A Chair, Associated President Marc B. Terrill sat down with JMore’s Gary Stein and Isaac ‘Bougie’ Herzog, Chairman of the Executive at The Jewish Agency for Israel. They talk about the state of global jewry, the rise in antisemitism, local Jewish heroes, The Associated’s Centennial…they cover it all.
Here’s an excerpt from the interview:
In your opinion, what is the state of world Jewry today?
World Jewry is challenged in this era. That’s what brought me on board with my full passion – to make sure that the Jewish people are unified. We can have a diverse dialogue amidst differences. But my fear is what happens if we don’t maintain strong connections between the two main pillars of Judaism today – 6 or 7 million Jews in Israel and 7 million Jews in North America – I call them Jerusalem and Babylon – and Jerusalem and Babylon need to work together rather than growing disparate, which is a huge danger for the Jewish people. And the second challenge of this era is antisemitism…the huge rise in hate of Jews all over the world.
I can’t agree with Bougie enough about the whole aspect of antisemitism. It’s incredibly scary, whether in North America or Europe or terror threats in Israel. Throughout our hundred-year history, we have been fortunate to work with credible partners like The Jewish Agency for Israel who play a significant role in France or in Germany or in other places and it’s a very important dynamic and feature for us.
I’ll give you just two examples so that our listeners understand. So on Yom Kippur as Jews, in the midst of the prayer, white supremacists, terrorists in Halle, Germany tried to break into the synagogue and butcher 100 Jews — Jews who fled from the former Soviet union and tried to build a community there — and they couldn’t get into the synagogue because together with our partners, we financed and helped that community install locks and doors and cameras and by doing that, we saved lives.
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