AIPAC The First Night

For the past few years, I have been asked to attend the AIPAC policy conference but the timing never seemed to work out. But this year, having spent the summer in Israel, I knew that this was the year!
I flew into Washington DC this evening and headed straight to the convention center, luggage and all, to check in and get my badge. We were advised to do this tonight since tomorrow, Sunday, will be very busy with Secret Service and President Obama and President Shimon Peres speaking at the opening plenary. As I got my badge I was told, make sure you are here tomorrow morning at 7:00 am so that you are in the hall on time. No one told him that I was from California and that’s 4:00 am my time! Oh well, sleep will happen on the plane ride home.
After walking almost a mile with my luggage to check in to the hotel, I headed back to the convention center for the opening reception for the Pacific Southwest Council. This may be the only time that I will see OC families: Silverstein, Brostoff, Vinikow, Taback, Matros, and Taleisnik. Because tomorrow, when the conference really starts, there will be 13,000 in attendance!!!!
Why am I here? Because I want to support Israel and I want to find new opportunities for my congregation to support Israel as well. One great comment came from a woman I sat on the bus with from Florida. She said, “I’m here because the world is watching.”
AIPAC Policy Conference is the largest gathering of Jews (and non-Jews) supporting Israel in the world. The world is watching. There are over 700 members of the press covering this event and sound bytes will start to make it around the world very soon, if they have not already.
I’m looking forward to taking it all in and bringing it back to all of you.
Stay in touch…there’s so much more to come.

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