Moshe Zakheim, President of the Committee of Jewish Organizations (COJO) of Flatbush, spoke at the Israel Heritage Foundation (IHF) Arutz Sheva event in Manhattan and called for foreign powers to end their interference in Israeli internal politics:

“We find ourselves overwhelmed by outside sources - non-Jewish sources, antisemitic sources - trying to dictate our way of life in Israel, whether it is the President of the United States with his daily threats, or the funding through the US State Department, the European Union or even left leaning, self-hating Jews who wish to destroy our way of life both in Israel and in the US. They are trying to impose their thinking about how the people of a truly democratic country, of which Israel is the only one in the Middle East, should live their lives.”

“A supposed ally, the US is demanding and dictating laws and policies by threatening to withhold assistance, both in money and in actions such as bringing the Abraham Accord to Saudi Arabia. It is demanding and threatening Israel by not allowing the elected members of their government the government of Israel to pursue the reform of the current undemocratic judicial system put into place by a small group of self-appointed judges.”

“Continued threats by the US and other foreign governments are not allowing what the population voted to take place. There are changes at the population voted for democratically, changes that should take place immediately. Based on information provided to me, over 200 million shekels have been given by foreign sources to create illegal demonstrations threatening the stability of a duly elected government and placing elected members of the Knesset in physical danger."

Zakheim spoke about how the religious community of Israel received hostile demonstrators: “We saw how the Orthodox Jewish community received the arrogant demonstrators - instead of a rock, they brought love, candy, and food packages. They came into the religious neighborhoods and disturbed the residents during the Sabbath or during prayers. We are aware, of course, of the complaints about the lack of Orthodox individuals joining the IDF, but they fail to appreciate that those who are not part of the army provide charitable services for the total population of Israel. They do this not just for the three years of service in the IDF, but for a lifetime - 130,000 to 150,000 lifetime volunteers in these organizations.”

Zakheim moved on to address the Reform movement: “The second issue is the growing power of a fringe group of outsiders, the American Reform movement, a dying group of supposed Jews who are demanding a new set of educational ideals to replace the ones we’ve had for the last 5700 years. This group claims to represent three million Jews in the diaspora, but let us review the statistics: The reform movement itself began about 150 years ago, led mainly by the semi-assimilated German Jews in Europe. They came to America in the mid-1800s and started their movement in the US with a small resemblance to our tradition, but they grew to become a major part of the Jewish US population until the Orthodox movement began in the US in the late 1800s and the early 1900s. They greatly increased after World War II, when over 6 million Jews were killed.”

“The beginning of this Orthodox growth in the US began at approximately the same time as the establishment of the modern state of Israel. Let me give you some statistics of the Reform movement - the degree of assimilation in the reform movement is currently at 79 percent. In addition, statistics show that children of assimilated parents themselves marry out of their religion, our religion, and when they finally do get married later in life they produce 1.71 children. The rate of survival of a religion is 2.5 children. In three generations from a number of 1000 adults in the reform movement will result in only 160 people remaining Jewish.”

“On the other hand the same number of 1000 individuals in the Orthodox movement results in 31,260 people in the same period. The Jewish school system currently has approximately 350,000 students, all Orthodox, except about five to seven thousand in reform or conservative school systems. The Orthodox school system is growing in excess of over 5000 pupils per year, while the Reform movement is losing between 500 to 1000 students per year. Reading their brochures, they align themselves with anti-Israel organizations such as J Street, calling Israel occupiers, supporting the two-state solution and pro-BDS thinking. They even showed themselves against the IDF on one of my trips to Israel.”

“I was approached by a number of secular mothers. One of them complained to me that her child came home from school with a comment that she just learned about the Shalosh Regalim (the Three festivals described in the Bible). Nice but what does that mean? The response was Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. The secular mother cried how much especially her children need to be provided religion in their schools. She said, ‘I am proud to be Jewish. I would like my children to know their heritage.’

“Listening to me, you can surmise that I'm very concerned about Israel. Let me explain why - my mother was born in Israel, my father learned in the Yeshiva of Rav Kook, my wife is a 12th-generation Jerusalemite. I learned in Israel. All my children and my grandchildren learned in Yeshivot or in the girls seminaries. Every one of my friends, thank God, own apartments in Israel and frequent Israel a number of times a year with the hope and intention to make Aliyah (immigrate to Israel) in the very near future. I beg all in attendance listen to my message. The future of our Jewishness and of our beloved state of Israel is being jeopardized by both the Reform movement and the anti-government demonstrations. With God’s help, though we will succeed.”