"Looking at Zion” is an online project that aims to present a comprehensive look into the Israel- Diaspora relationship. In order to reach this goal we present a series of questions to members of Jewish communities around the world, asking them to articulate their thoughts and feelings towards Israel.

The interviewee- Mignon Yankelowitz (1976), born in Pietermaritzburg in South Africa, Today lives in Western Cape, South Africa. Yankelowitz was born to a Jewish father and did a full orthodox conversion in 2002-2005. Holds a Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com.) – Accounting from University of Pretoria. In the years 2008 – 2010 she held the position of Accounting Manager at the American Jewish University. Today she holds the position of Head of Finance at a South African media company.

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Mignon Yankelowitz

In your opinion, what importance, if any, does the existence of a Jewish state has to you personally and to Jewish people in general?

“From a religious perspective it’s of ultimate importance to the Jewish nation and from a historical and cultural perspective it embodies tradition and heritage that cannot be found elsewhere.”

Do you feel committed in some way to defend the future existence of Israel?

“Yes very much so.”

Do you feel morally responsible for Israel’s actions (such as its management of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict)?

“Somewhat, not knowing enough to engage too much tho.”

In your opinion, what is the main thing Israelis fail to understand about the reality of being Jewish outside of Israel?

“Israeli’s give the impression that because they are Israeli they are exempt from keeping Jewish laws and traditions therefore tainting the image of Jewish nation to some degree from a non Jews perspective.”

How would you describe Israel’s policy (formally and in practice) regarding its relationship with the Diaspora?

“It is fair and just.”

In your opinion, does Israel have an obligation to defend and help Jewish communities in need?


Have you ever been to Israel?

“No, but I will take my son when he is over 13.”

If an Israeli tourist should ever come across your hometown, which experience should he/she not miss?

“Table mountain and the unity of Jewish people in South Africa is unique.”

For more interviews with prominent members in Jewish communities around the world go to - lookingatzion.com

You can Contact us at- lookingatzion@gmail.com

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official position or viewpoint of The Jerusalem Post. Blog authors are NOT employees, freelance or salaried, of The Jerusalem Post.

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