Shalom Life | April 26, 2015

Jewish Leaders Attend Presidential Reception at White House

President Obama promises “Unwavering support for Israel”

By: David Shear

Published: June 5th, 2012 in News » World

Jewish Leaders Attend Presidential Reception at White House

In 1862, Ulysses S. Grant, then a general in the Union army, issued an order that would have expelled Jews as a class from what was known during the Civil War as the military department of Tennesee. American Jews protested, including one Jewish merchant who traveled from Kentucky to meet with President Abraham Lincoln at the White House. After the meeting, Lincoln immediately revoked the order. Grant later recognized his mistake and as the president, went out of his way to appoint Jews to office and condemn anti-Semitism across the world.

President Obama told this story to a room filled with Jewish leaders at the White House recently during a reception for Jewish American Heritage Month (JAHM). On hand were several leaders from The Jewish Federations of North America.

During his speech, the president acknowledged the United States’ “unwavering” support for Israel and its security, and also praised the contributions that American Jews have made throughout history.

“Like so many groups, Jews had to fight for their piece of the American dream. But this country holds a special promise that if we stand up for the traditions we believe in, and for the values we share, then our wrongs can be made right, our union can be made more perfect and our world can be repaired,” said President Obama. “Today, we don’t just celebrate all that American Jews have done for our country, we also look toward the future.”

The reception marked the third year that President Obama has honored JAHM at the White House; past years’ events have welcomed sports great Sandy Koufax and recording artist Regina Spektor, among other notable Jews. The current administration is continuing a tradition started by President George W. Bush, who proclaimed May as JAHM in 2006.

"It was an honor to represent The Jewish Federations of North America at the White House,” said Gelman. “The President spoke about America's long-time bond with the Jewish people and our steadfast support for Israel."

The reception was attended by approximately 400 guests including rabbis, members of Congress, and leaders in the business, arts, education, and public and community service fields. Rak Shalom, a University of Maryland group of a cappella singers, also performed.

Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties TrendingIsrael: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth TrendingNetanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer Trending
 

Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

Released by Sagol 59 and Ami Yaris, "The Promised Land" features songs from the revered jam band beautifully translated into Hebrew

Read More

Ban Ki-Moon Eats Shakshuka On Israel Independence Day

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Ban Ki-Moon Eats Shakshuka On Israel Independence Day

An exploration into Israeli food, and maybe the first step towards peace, Ban Ki-Moon tries shakshuka for the first time

Read More

WATCH: Tel Aviv Zookeeper Captures Awesome Footage of Animals Drinking

April 24, 2015 | By Maya Yarowsky, NoCamels
WATCH: Tel Aviv Zookeeper Captures Awesome Footage of Animals Drinking

Elad Hershkowitz captured the unique footage by placing a GoPro camera at the bottom of animals' water troughs to get a closer look at how giraffes, lions, rhinos and lemurs relieve their parched pallets

Read More

First Nations Actors Storm Off the Set of Adam Sandler's Western Spoof

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
First Nations Actors Storm Off the Set of Adam Sandler's Western Spoof

Despite concerns raised by actors on the set, and even following a walkout by cast, Netflix and Sandler stand by the 'The Ridiculous Six'

Read More

Poland Wants Mattel To Recall 'Apples To Apples' Game For Labelling Them As Nazis

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Poland Wants Mattel To Recall 'Apples To Apples' Game For Labelling Them As Nazis

A card which refers to their country as "Nazi Poland" during the second World War has been deemed offensive and demeaning to Poland

Read More

Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties

April 24, 2015 | By Jacob Kamaras, JNS.org
Former New York State Governor and Possible Presidential Candidate Has Longstanding Jewish Ties

George Pataki has a strong history with Jewish voters for a Republican

Read More

Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Israel: One Of The Happiest Countries On Earth

Israel takes the 11th spot on the UN's annual happiness report, coming out on top of countries like the U.S. and U.K.

Read More

Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer

April 24, 2015 | By Kobi Nachshoni
Netanyahu Condemns Ultra Orthodox Jewish Attackers of IDF Officer

'They are lawbreakers. Service in the IDF is a source of pride,' the Israeli PM stated

Read More

More Headlines