A few weeks ago, during a session in June at the Israeli Presidential Conference in Jerusalem, Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, issued a call for a five year, $500-million-per-year investment in Jewish education. He then penned an Op-Ed in JTA outlining his vision for the $2.5 billion program, though it was short on details.
So what is he going to do about it now? Not much, it seems.
“All I can do to is to raise the subject, raise an idea,” Foxman told me. “Either nobody cares or nobody cares if I talk about it.”
But, Foxman said, Jewish education is an important enough issue that he’d consider heading up the Board of Jewish Education if asked to do so – not that anyone’s asking.
“That could be a next career,” said the 72-year-old Foxman, who has been at the helm of the ADL for more than a quarter-century. “I would consider being head of the BJE, but I don’t think they would offer it because I need credentials.”
“Jewish education is a very serious issue for Jewish survival. It’s as important as fighting anti-Semitism and maybe even more,” Foxman said. “I care about anti-Semitism in the context of caring for the future of Jewish people. I see my job as making the environment as user friendly as possible for Jews who want to be Jews.”