The Brazil Issue and Jewish Pride

David Rubin,

לבן ריק
לבן ריק
צילום: ערוץ 7
David Rubin
David Rubin is former mayor of Shiloh, Israel. He is founder and president of Shiloh Israel Children"s Fund, and the author of five books, including The Islamic Tsunami and his latest, More Sparks From Zion. For more info, click on these links: or

The controversy over Dani Dayan’s appointment as Israel’s Ambassador to Brazil has stirred up a diplomatic row that is an unfortunate test of our pride as a sovereign nation. What has caused this conflict and what can we learn from it?

The Argentinian-born Dayan happens to be a long-time resident of Samaria and the former head of the Yesha Council, an advocacy group for Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria. Despite its approval by the Israeli cabinet, the Dayan appointment has hit into a surprising wall of oppo‎sition, all based on his right-of-center views and his place of residence. The Brazilian government, in a rare departure from diplomatic protocol, has held up granting its consent to the appointment for more than four months and is now sending out the message that Israel should choose someone else. 

Despite support from leading politicians across the Israeli political spectrum for what is, in fact, a diplomatic, not political appointment, numerous supposedly non-political appointees from past administrations have gotten involved; frantically trying to torpedo what should have been a routine approval process. In an embarrassing display of politically-biased unprofessional be‎havior, three former Israeli ambassadors, including former Foreign Ministry Director General Alon Liel, have been acting against the will of Israel's elected government, using their influence with the government of Brazil to demand that Brasilia reject Dayan's appointment. This has apparently been done in close coordination with the Palestinian Authority, the same PA that has been inciting and funding a daily terror war against Israel.

“V’Lamalshinim al tehi tikva” (For those who slander there should be no hope)

  • From the Weekday Amidah Prayer

For years, Israel’s right-of-center parties have never gotten in the way of ambassadorial appointees who may have had left-of-center views, and such appointees have been much more common, especially during the Yitzchak Rabin-Shimon Peres- Ehud Barak era. It was always understood, at least publicly, that an Israeli diplomat is simply an advocate for Israel, whatever his place on the political spectrum. The appointment of Dayan, with his pro-settlement views, has changed all that. Suddenly, the diplomatic elites no longer value the principle that we don’t let internal politics get in the way of capable, professional diplomacy on behalf of Israel. The stench of political bias coming from the diplomatic Left that is busy scheming with the Palestinian Authority is so obvious and the breach of diplomatic protocol by Brazil is so blatant that the Netanyahu government should be fighting it tooth and nail. If the Brazilian government refuses to accept Israel’s appointee, the current Brazilian Ambassador to Israel should be sent home.  

It all comes down to a question of Jewish pride, the basic national pride that should be a given for us in situations like this. A country that accepts the non-recognition of its capital, as Israel tacitly does with its general public silence about the issue of Jerusalem, will not be given any respect when it comes to a relatively small issue like diplomatic appointments. A proud nation doesn’t fear the ramifications of every diplomatic offensive, but instead takes such action when needed.

The Dayan case calls for such a bold approach, and no compromise.