Four former Americans are running for a spot on the Likud Knesset list, and they all appeared on a Tuesday evening webcast originating at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem.
The four new candidates are Yechiel Leiter, Yossi Fuchs, Daniel Seaman, and Tal Brody.
Yechiel Leiter, 48, was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and immigrated to Israel in 1978. He served as the Deputy Director-General of the Ministry of Education and was Chief of Staff to then-Finance Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. A past spokesman for the Yesha Council, he is an ordained rabbi, holds a degree in law, an MA in international relations, and is currently writing his doctoral thesis at Haifa University. His was one of the founding families of the renewed Jewish Community of Hevron.
Attorney Yossi Fuchs, 37, co-chair of the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, was born in Flatbush, New York, and immigrated to Israel with his parents in 1974. He now lives with his American-born wife and four children in the Gush Etzion town of N’vei Daniel, and is seeking the “Judea and Samaria” slot on the Likud list. He and his family spent two years in Memphis, Tennessee on “shlichut,” doing community work, teaching Jewish studies and the like. He has been active for nearly five years in the Legal Forum, helping the residents of Gush Katif and northern Shomron obtain the benefits they deserve. An expert in constitutional and administrative law, Fuchs heads the “Home in Yesha” movement.
Danny Seaman was born on a US Air Force base in Germany in 1961. His family immigrated to Israel from the United States in 1971 and settled in the port city of Ashkelon. While serving at the Consulate General of Israel in New York between 1983 and 1989, he completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, with honors, at the City University of New York's Hunter College. Seaman left his position as director of the Israel Government Press Office (GPO) in order to run for office. Considered an expert on the international press coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict, he has served as an advisor and spokesperson to the Governments of Prime Ministers Ariel Sharon, Ehud Barak, Binyamin Netanyahu, Shimon Peres, Yitzchak Rabin and Yitzhak Shamir. Seaman resides in Jerusalem with his wife and three children, and is running for the reserved seat for the Southern District.
Tal Brody, 65, is the oldest of the would-be Anglo Likud MKs, and says he feels politics is his third career calling, after being a Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball legend and insurance company manager. Upon leading his team to its first European Cup championship in 1977, he became widely recognized as a national hero and a symbol of young Israel’s achievements. His famous American-accented and ungrammatical remark, "We are on the map!" became a part of Israeli culture. Brody was born in Trenton, New Jersey, in 1943 and immigrated to Israel in 1966.
The primaries in the Likud are to be held on December 8.