NEW YORK, July 15 – Jews worldwide should launch a concerted effort against current manifestations of antisemitism, because the survival of Israel and the Jewish people is at stake, World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder said in his address today to the Global Forum for Combating Antisemitism.
The Jerusalem event, held July 13-15 and organized by Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is the premier biennial gathering for assessing the state of antisemitism globally and formulating effective forms of societal and governmental response.
“Today’s fight against antisemitism is a war, no less consequential than the Six-Day War or the Yom Kippur War,” Amb. Lauder said in his remarks. Israel, he declared, “allowed its enemies to define it, and Israel did not respond.” Today, he said, “Israel has become the new excuse for the old antisemitism. And our enemies have free rein because there has been no commensurate response from Israel.”
Amb. Lauder called on the Israeli Foreign Ministry to be proactive and tell Israel’s side of the story to the world. He said: “I believe Foreign Minister Yair Lapid will be a great Foreign Minister, and I believe he should create a strong public relations and information division that will define the true Israel and not leave that up to our enemies.”
In addition to Amb. Lauder, other speakers at the forum included: Israeli President Isaac Herzog; Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Yair Lapid; Israeli Minister of Diaspora Affairs Dr. Nachman Shai; and Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, the Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish History and Holocaust Studies at Emory University. A panel discussion on the role of sports in the fight against antisemitism was hosted by Rola Brentlin, head of Special Projects for Chelsea Football Club.
Also participating in forum, were WJC Commissioner for Interfaith Relations Claudio Epelman, WJC’ Representative to the UN in Geneva and UNESCO Leon Saltiel and WJC Senior Consultant Mike Whine, who respectively participated in panels entitled The Power of Religious Leadership, Ensuring Continuity of Jewish Life in Europe, and How Safe is it to be a Jew today ? The implications of antisemitism on the security of Jewish Communities
The full text of Amb. Lauder’s remarks is here.