Phoenix, Ariz (Nov. 5)
The second annual Zionist Caravan, a travelling road show determined “to bring a touch of Israel, a taste of Zionism, to Jews and everyone else who wants to listen,” left this desert metropolis this week for a month-long sweep of 16 communities in three western states. Known officially as the “Israel Scene Mobile”, the project is sponsored by the World Zionist Organization’s information department, the American Zionist Federation, the Jewish National Fund and the American Zionist Youth Foundation.
The Caravan consists of two vehicles equipped with the latest in English language films, music, audiovisual programs, exhibits and literature pertaining to Israel and Zionism. Accompanying it this year are five young Americans who have immigrated to Israel.
Co-directors of the project are Steve Leibowitz, 30, and Jon Medved, 26. Leibowitz explained that the purpose of the Caravan is to bring the Zionist message to places “where the more established Israelis on the lecture circuit don’t frequently reach.” He said that “In visits of rarely no more than 48 hours, we try to get people excited about Zionism and plant seeds in people’s minds about their potential place in Israel.”
THEMES IN FOCUS
Medved said that “This year, we are focusing on two themes in particular. We want to involve as many people as possible formally within the Zionist movement whichever specific organization they might wish to associate with. Secondly, we want to state the facts and put the lie to the outrageous myth that Zionism equals racism.”
In addition to Phoenix, the Caravan will visit Tucson, Ariz.; Las Vegas, Nev.; San Diego and Los Angeles, Calif., and Los Angeles suburbs; Orange County, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, San Jose, the San Francisco Bay area and Sacramento. It will terminate in Los Angeles December 8.
Last year’s Caravan visited 22 cities in nine southern states. According to its directors it reached over 10 million people through radio and television coverage in addition to direct contact with some 6000 Jews and Christians.