Along with three of my classmates, Aaron Goldblatt, Elly Marcus and Avraham Sosnowik, and accompanied by Mr. David Kintzer, I spent three empowering and educational days in Washington at the AIPAC Schusterman Advocacy Institute High School Summit.
Over 400 high school students from all segments of the Jewish community, including day schools and public schools, from all parts of the country participated, sharing a commitment to Israel and to strengthening the U.S.-Israel alliance. We attended seminars on the importance of the alliance, written advocacy, advocacy using public speaking, responding to BDS, anti-Semitism on college campuses, and on core issues related to the current situation in Israel and the Middle East. AIPAC deployed over 100 staffers to support the program.
The Summit concluded with all the attendees meeting with their Congressional representatives. We participated in the democratic process by clearly expressing our appreciation for supportive positions and urging consideration of important actions on pending legislation and resolutions.
There were three key issues that were the focus of these meetings: urging Congress to take significant action to curb Palestinian Authority incitement, especially in light of the current wave of terror; obtaining Congressional support for the U.S. to supply the necessary weapons systems to ensure that Israel maintains a qualitative military edge; and the importance of maintaining a strong positive relationship between the U.S. and Israel.
On the final day of the summit, I had the honor of speaking when my lobbying caucus met with South Shore Rep. Kathleen Rice, who was warm and receptive to our group.
After I expressed our concerns on behalf of the group, Rep. Rice stressed her dedication to supporting the U.S.-Israel relationship. One day before our meeting, there had been a call to vote on the Royce-Engel resolution and Rep. Rice supported it. Royce-Engel calls on P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas to cease P.A. incitement of terror. Its passage will facilitate further action by the U.S. to de-fund the P.A. if it continues to incite terrorist activity.