Anti-convergence battle starts in US

In advance of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's visit to Washington next week, New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind has begun a US campaign to stop the convergence plan. The Democrat told The Jerusalem Post on Monday that he plans to set up a national Jewish-Christian coalition to lobby American politicians including congressmen and senators to secure their support in stopping US funds from assisting any unilateral withdrawal from Judea and Samaria. In addition, he plans to work with leaders within the American Evangelical movement. "I am going to fight with everything that I have the idea that my tax dollars are paying to help throw Jews out of their homes," said Hikind, who arrived in Israel on Monday. "The Israeli government has the right to do what they want, but we as Americans do not have to support it," said Hikind. This is not the first time that Hikind has gotten involved in a battle against Israeli government policy. Last summer he brought a number of solidarity missions from the US to protest the Disengagement Plan. He himself entered Gaza before the pullout to stand in solidarity with its residents. "Whatever my involvement was with Gush Katif, it is nothing compared to what I intend to do here," said Hikind, who is spending the next few days visiting settlements in Judea and Samaria.