Traversing the cultural differences between the center and the Diaspora

Israeli American Council hosts second conference in DC this weekend.

By
September 20, 2016 18:55
1 minute read.
Jewish American

Thousands of Jewish American high-school students attend a rally in Manhattan in 2002 calling for an end to terrorism. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

WASHINGTON – The Israeli American Council, which aims to bridge cultural gaps between Israeli and American Jewry, will host its second conference in Washington this weekend.

The event will host several prominent members of both communities, including Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, Foreign Minister director-general Dore Gold and several US congressmen and former diplomats.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The goal of the conference is to encourage dialogue on a host of issues critical to both communities: How young Jewish Americans are identifying with Israel, what it means to be Jewish in this day and age and what Zionism looks like today, said Shoham Nicolet, co-founder and CEO of the IAC.

“The conference is going to touch on many issues,” Nicolet said. “I think that what we have at the IAC as Israeli Americans is that we can speak both Israeli and American – and by that I mean, we help bridge the cultural differences.”

The conference will include several “breakout” plenaries, on a range of topics from politics to the arts, Nicolet said.

“It makes us a living bridge,” he added. “At the end of the day we need to remember it’s not different parties. We’re one family.”

Nicolet cited “100 percent growth” in volunteers from last year, and said that 250 students have already registered for the event, to be held downtown at the Marriott Marquis.



“This conference is going to be very young, and that’s good news for us,” he said. “We speak about turning it into a movement – going from participation to engagement. And it’s amazing how many volunteers and community leaders we’re getting. Today the organization is active in 27 different states.”

The conference highlights a growing concern among Jewish- American establishment organizations that younger generations in the US are identifying less with the religion, the culture, or both. Nicolet said this was a personal concern of his, and that he expects it to be a central theme of the conference.

“Research shows that they are thinking more about themselves than bigger issues,” he said. “I don’t think we can trust that with time, they will go searching for their roots.”

Related Content

A Holocaust survivor shows his tattoo
July 19, 2018
Documentary chronicles search for family's art lost in Holocaust

By VICKY LARSON/THE MARIN INDEPENDENT JOURNAL