Ambassador Nides, Joseph Mark, Ambassador David Friedman, and Stanley Stern.jpg

By Trudy Stern, Esq.

I have just returned from the March of the Living in Poland, where Stanley and I had the privilege to be included on a trip bringing some of the most influential Americans to learn more about the horrors of the Holocaust. Together with Ambassador David Friedman, Robert Kraft, Wolf Blitzer, Dana Bash, rapper Meek Mill, and current U.S. Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides, we walked in the path of our kinsmen who had their lives ended by unimaginable evil. Also in our group was Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Herzog, Rav Lau, Rabbi Zalman and Rebbetzin Chanie Wolowik, and Miriam Adelson. Clearly there were a lot of different political views in the group, but one thing was universal to all: a strong, unwavering, unconditional support for the State of Israel.

Ambassador Friedman’s vision of a bipartisan delegation bridging all barriers in support of Israel was powerful. It was a clear and loud statement of the importance of Israel remaining a bipartisan issue, as it always has been. Friedman stated that when he called Ambassador Nides to propose the mission, he expected Nides would need time to discuss the matter with others before agreeing to attend. To Friedman’s surprise, Nides said yes in that first conversation, without hesitation.

At the opening dinner of our delegation, Ambassador Nides spoke about his concerns about the waning support for Israel in the U.S., due to the judicial reforms that are being proposed and the resulting protests taking place. He urged the members of our group to use whatever influence we have to explain that the people of Israel have the right to determine their government, and that these protests are democracy in its purest form. No matter what the issue is, the people of Israel are able to exercise their right to protest and that is a true democracy. He went on to say that there is no other country in the region that would allow that. Nides knew all about NORPAC and highlighted the importance of the work that we do. He knew that we were having our annual mission to Congress this May, and spent a lot of time going through the most important issues that he encounters in his capacity as ambassador to Israel. Ambassadors Friedman and Nides were unified in their belief of the need for strong bipartisan support for Israel, without which Israeli support in Congress would be in jeopardy.

To all of us in this delegation it was very clear that the Holocaust happened at a time when Jews did not have Israel as a sanctuary, and we did not have a voice to intercede on our people’s behalf. The major takeaway for everyone in our group was this: Now we have both, and it is essential that we use whatever influence and voice we have for the benefit of Israel.

To do this, your presence on the NORPAC Mission to DC is critically important. For starters, members of Congress pay close attention to how many people come to discuss specific issues with them, and that helps set their issue priorities. Second, we have seen countless times how members of Congress actually change their position on Israel issues for the better after engaging with our group. Representatives are not experts on all the issues, and they strongly rely on knowledgeable and passionate people to help steer them toward the right positions to take. Educating members of Congress and the Senate on Israel issues is NORPAC’s real power, and our accomplishment on that front over the last 15 years cannot be overstated.

It’s time to put that effort into high gear. Israel is facing graver dangers than ever before: Iran is committed to her destruction and is supporting terrorists in furtherance of that goal. As we speak, Israel is preparing for war on all fronts. At the same time, anti-Semitic incidents are happening at record levels across the globe, and support for Israel is waning. Rampant anti-Semitism left unchecked grows and leads directly to diminished American support for the State of Israel. As our brethren in Israel fight on the frontlines each and every day, it is imperative that each of us give up one day of our lives to go to DC to persuade those in power to help Israel’s safety and security.

Do not make the mistake of sitting on the sidelines at this critical moment. At the rise of Nazism, the American Jewish community did not have a voice. Today, we have the ability to talk to senators and members of Congress and advocate for the safety and security of Israel. We must do so. The NORPAC Mission gives each person the opportunity to directly speak with members of Congress in small groups. The power of these conversations is greater than you can imagine. It is incumbent upon all of us to stand up and be heard so that history will not repeat itself.

When your children ask you what you did to help Israel and the Jewish people at a time of crisis, you will feel proud to say that you went to DC and met with those directly making the most important decisions facing Israel and Jewish people.

I am one of the NORPAC Mission co-chairs and I am urging you to sign up for the NORPAC Mission today. Please share this article with anyone you think would be interested in attending.

Sign up at, or call Avi at 201-788-5133.


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