NEW YORK – Mandy Patinkin, renowned star of stage and screen, received the Yitzhak Rabin Peace Award on Sunday evening in Los Angeles from Americans for Peace Now.
“Patinkin has long been a dedicated and passionate spokesperson and leader on behalf of Israeli peace and the work of Americans for Peace Now,” APN said in a statement.
In his speech accepting the award, Patinkin expressed support for the peace process and disappointment at the recent developments.
“It is not the right of the Israeli prime minister to walk away from the peace table,” he said.
Around 200 guests attended the event, which was held to commemorate of the passing of Arthur P. Stern, APN’s former West Coast chairman and a survivor of Bergen- Belsen, who died last year.
Patinkin is a member of the APN board and has staged charity concerts for Peace Now in the past. In 2012 he gave an impassioned speech at its conference in Israel where he spoke about visiting Hebron 30 years previously, before his son was born, and again more recently.
“Everything I saw [this time] was a ghost town,” he said. “Every beautiful place I saw was boarded up and the doors were sealed. The streets were only for Jewish cars and Jewish people. By the time I left, I didn’t want a memory of this place the way it is now,” he said.
“We are all afraid of many things,” he continued. “It is our job, for those who do not have the strength to sit at the peace table, to walk into the face of everything we’re frightened of. The fear will never go away, but the strength will increase and will overwhelm your fear. I am certain that this peace process will prevail. It will be the voice of the future of Israel.”
Patinkin has been nominated for a Golden Globe and an Emmy for his most recent role as CIA operative Saul Berenson in the hit American television series Homeland, which is based on an Israeli series.
He is perhaps best known for his role as the swashbuckler Inigo Montoya in the 1980s cult film The Princess Bride.