Am V'Artzo: The Jewish People and the State of Israel

By David Mallach

Jewish Communal Service Association of North America (JCSA), Winter 2010

After President Obama's Cairo speech in June 2009, the comments in the Jewish community ranged across the political and ideological spectrum. Some charged that the president had ignored the Zionist narrative of Israel in his speech. They asked, "Why was there so little awareness of the 'Zionist enterprise' in a speech given by a public official so attuned to nuances in public discourse?" One reason for the slant of the speech is that it was directed to a certain audience - the Muslim world - and was crafted accordingly. However, there is another fundamental factor that the Jewish community must recognize that may have led to the speech's omission of the Zionist narrative. When Israel is evoked in American Jewish life, three themes tend to dominate: the Holocaust, the close U.S.-Israel relationship, and the Arab (also Iranian) threat to Israel and her citizens. The mention of the Zionist narrative in any context is rare. How do we understand the link between Jewish history, the land and people of Israel, and the global Jewish people and the relevance of the Zionist narrative in the contemporary world?

Topic: Diaspora Relations, Jewish Federations, Israel-Diaspora Relations, Communal Responsibility, Statehood, Israel Attachment, Israel's Impact on American Jewry, Zionism, US-Israel Relations

Name of Publication: Journal of Jewish Communal Service

Editor: Naron Chalew, Gail

Volume/Issue: Vol.85/No.1

Page Number(s): 20-23

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Genre: Article

Coverage: New York, New York , United States

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Publisher

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Mallach, David. Am V'Artzo: The Jewish People and the State of Israel. Journal of Jewish Communal Service. Jewish Communal Service Association of North America (JCSA). Winter 2010: 20-23.


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