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Rift between Israel, US Jews deepens

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely's scandalous words, belittling the attachment of American Jewry to Israel, finally brought the drama of the Israel-US Jewry rift onto the Israeli public agenda.

The ongoing and escalating crisis in relations between Israel and American Jewry since the cancellation of the Western Wall compromise in June had not managed to penetrate public and media discourse in Israel until the uproar raised by Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely on Nov. 22 following one damaging and ignorant interview. Hotovely’s words in the interview can be likened to another “terrorist attack” on relations between Israel and American Jewry — and thanks to them, the great drama experienced by diaspora Jewry has finally reached the top of the media and political agenda in Israel.

Hotovely was interviewed in English by the I24 NEWS network and said, among other things, that most American Jews don’t understand Israel since they “never send their children to fight for their country … most of the Jews don’t have children who serve as soldiers, going to the Marines, going to Afghanistan or to Iraq.” She added, “Most of them are having quite convenient lives. They don’t feel how it feels to be attacked by rockets, and I think part of it is to actually experience what Israel is dealing with on a daily basis.”

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