A festive dinner to welcome new Ambassador of Israel to the United States Ron Dermer was hosted by WJC president Ronald S. Lauder at his home on 22 January 2014 on behalf of the World Jewish Congress and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish organizations (COP).
Attended by Israeli UN Ambassador Ron Prosor, Ambassador Ido Aharoni, Consul General of Israel in New York, WJC CEO Robert Singer, Evelyn Sommer, Chair, WJC, North America, WJC leaders, COP Chair Robert Sugarman, Malcolm Hoenlein, COP Executive Vice Chairman, and UN ambassadors of Bulgaria, Canada, India and Palau, the illustrious group was privileged to hear Ambassador Dermer provide an up to the minute briefing on Israel’s most urgent current concerns.
Most pressing, the Ambassador said, is how the international community will deal with Iran’s unrelenting pursuit of nuclear capability, a fact evidenced by its continued enrichment of uranium and development of ballistic missiles, neither of which, he noted, are needed for peaceful purposes. After the Geneva agreement, sanctions will play an increasingly important role in trying to put a stop to the threat of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons, he explained, adding that the goal of sanctions is to prevent the worst case scenario, and to ensure an effective diplomatic solution.
The WJC raised concerns about recent attempts at BDS ( boycotts, divestment, sanctions) emanating from the business and academic communities. BDS is really anti-Semitism in addition to the attempt to delegitimize Israel, said Dermer, and needs to be fought by the community in every arena, as the WJC did in its condemnation of the American Studies Association vote to boycott Israel.
Lauder praised Ambassador Dermer for his knowledge of the issues and ability to effectively communicate Israel’s positions to the media and international community, noting how fortunate Israel is to have such an outstanding representative.
Sugarman thanked the ambassador for his outreach and friendship and expressed the commitment of the community to always to be of assistance to him in his new capacity.