Hundreds of American Jews Rally in Support of Israeli Policies

Hundreds of American Jews joined together in a rally Thursday to demonstrate support for Israel and the way it has been handling the disturbances in the administered territories.

More than 350 people attended the rally across the street from the Israeli Consulate here, at 800 Second Ave. Members of more than a dozen Jewish organizations participated in the rally, which was coordinated by the Zionist Organization of America.

It was one of the strongest expressions of American Jewish support for Israel since the unrest in the West Bank and Gaza Strip began more than eight weeks ago.

Marching in a circle and chanting “Am Yisroel Chai” and “Israel united — never be divided,” the demonstrators carried signs that read; “Arabs plot Israel’s annihilation,” “Arab rioters love to be on TV” and “Israel has a right to self-defense.”

Dr. Kenneth Kelner, president of the Manhattan Region of the ZOA, told the rally, “We feel there is a strong attempt to isolate Israel and pressure it into political decisions that might be dangerous to its security. Such pressure could prevent Israel from taking defensive actions in face of the ongoing rioting by the Palestinians in the territories.”

Toward the end of the rally, which lasted about 90 minutes, Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, and Moshe Yegar, Israel’s consul general in New York, joined the demonstrators.

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