Rivlin to AJC: Let's work together for the world's benefit

President Rivlin welcomes delegation from the leadership of the AJC upon the organization's arrival in Jerusalem for its Global Forum.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Mark Neiman, GPO

President Rivlin has welcomed a delegation from the leadership of the American Jewish Committee on the organization's arrival in Jerusalem for its Global Forum, which runs through Wednesday.

"Honorable friends, brothers and sisters. The American Jewish Committee was a leading organization in the Jewish world, even before the state of Israel was established, and to this day, the AJC continues to lead the Jewish American community and promote its goals all over the world. It is therefore a great honor to have you here today. Welcome!

"Friends, August twenty-third 1950, was a historic day. On that day, David Ben Gurion, prime minister of the newly-born State of Israel, and Jacob Blaustein the president of the AJC met together. From that meeting came out the agreement that determines to this day, the status-quo between Israel and the Jewish Diaspora, especially in the US. The agreement was very short, but it was enough. Today, however, times have changed. After almost seventy years, the Ben Gurion-Blaustein agreement is no longer enough. We need a new vision, for the next seventy years.

"As I said in my address to the General Assembly last year, Israel has today four tribes. But you, the Jewish diaspora, are our fifth tribe. You are part of Israel's flesh, and part of our soul. This means we must make sure of the shared parts we play. Here in Israel, our children know too little about your life. They know little about you, because they learn very little about you. We need to find a way to change that. To create a TAGLIT in which Israelis reaching out to the diaspora.

"After the Kotel crisis, I spoke to many American Jewish leaders, who shared with me their pain. They feel that we in Israel refuse to listen to them when it comes to making decisions. At first I said, we all must respect Israeli democracy, but in addition, we must establish the channels that will promise that your voice will be heard. That will allow us to communicate both when there are good things and when there are things of concern.

"Finally, we need to find ways to work together in a better way, a more creative way. That is the only way our children will understand, that we are actually, on the same side. As I said in my speech at the GA, we do good, but we can do even better if we do it together. Where can we begin? We should select shared missions, the Jewish People and the State of Israel, for Tikun Olam. Jewish missions to communities in need around the world, can increase so much the impact of aid sent by Israel to countries in crisis - like in Nepal, Haiti and now Guatemala. Jewish donations of hundreds of millions of dollars to developing countries can help us to implement Israeli technologies of water and agriculture, as we are doing today in India and in Africa, or Life-saving Israeli technologies like Mobileye. For example In my recent visit to Ethiopia, I had a special opportunity to try this together for the first time with a joint delegation of Jews from all around the world, Rabbi Mirvis, the British Chief Rabbi, Sir Trevor Pears, the head of the Pears foundation - together with all sectors of Israeli life government, NGOs, and members of the business sector. Together, we came to do "impact for good". Ethiopia is only the beginning; you at the AJC understand this. You are the leading of global Jewish advocacy organization. Just imagine the real change we can do together."