AIPAC youth: 'Extremely important' for US to fund Iron Dome

Arutz Sheva speaks with AIPAC youth about anti-Semitism, Israel's security, and their future plans.

Yoni Kempinski,

Arutz Sheva's Yoni Kempinski (L) with Nathan Links (C) and Jacob Elkin (R)
Arutz Sheva's Yoni Kempinski (L) with Nathan Links (C) and Jacob Elkin (R)
Yoni Kempinski

In an Arutz Sheva interview at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) youth conference, one attendee said that "a lot of his friends" have experienced anti-Semitism.

Responding to Arutz Sheva's question regarding how anti-Semitism impacts his everyday life, Nathan Links of California said, "I know that local schools around me, public schools, I know a lot of friends that have experienced stuff first-hand."

He also emphasized the role Israel plays in his life: "I've been here for the past three years and Israel's just always been just a vital part of my life, always showing support."

Links plans to join the IDF's Machal program next year, starting off "with a year and a half in the army" and hopefully staying for "longer."

"I find it personally very interesting just hearing about all the different politicians from various sides of the aisle, and just hearing about whats going on that not only affects our country but also Israel," he added.

Links also believes that interest in Israel is growing: "I'm definitely seeing especially in my high school a lot of people want to learn about Israel, become supporters of Israel. I started a Jewish club in my high school, and I'm constantly bringing in people and educating them...just getting people more aware of the situation."

Jacob Elkin of Stanford, Connecticut, told Arutz Sheva: "I feel very special connection to Israel and I feel that I want to learn more about it, hear other people and what they have to say. I also plan on joining the IDF in two years, so I just want to hear what other people have to say about it."

Elkin emphasized the importance of the US continuing to fund Israel's "Iron Dome" anti-missile system.

"I think its extremely important, we - America, we fund Israel for many different things, Iron Dome and especially the current situation, its very unstable with all the rockets from...Gaza, so its extremely important that we keep on - that American keeps on funding the iron dome so that we can stay safe in Israel and keep everybody safe there."

Elkin believes that anti-Semitism is "terrible" and disgusting" but admitted that there were "a few situations" where swastikas were drawn in front of public buildings.

"I'm always very proud to say I'm Jewish...but there has been in Stanford Connecticut, there has been a few situations where swastikas have been drawn in one of the public high schools, in front of a library which is downtown," he said.

"It's terrible, I think it's disgusting. I don't ever want to see that, it's terrible."

Elkin, who attends his high school's Jewish Club, emphasized that, "Anybody is allowed to come, even people that aren't Jewish could come and we just talk about Israel, learn about Judaism, its everything."

"You don't have to be the most religious person, you just have to have an interest in and love for Israel."