November 29, 2017 marked the 70 year anniversary of the most historical decision for Jews at the United Nations. In 1947, the General Assembly voted on Resolution 181, which called for the establishment of the state of Israel as the one and only Jewish homeland. I was fortunate enough to be at an event celebrating this milestone, hosted by Ambassador Danny Danon, the permanent representative of Israel to the United Nations. The celebration took place in the exact same room where the representatives of 33 countries voted for this resolution to pass. It changed history for the Jews as a nation. It was incredible to be in the same place where this monumental moment in history took place.
At the event Vice President Mike Pence, Ambassador Danny Danon, and Minister Yisrael Katz all spoke. Danny Danon started the morning with a detailed description of the General Assembly that took place 70 years ago. He explained that “the Zionist relied on prayers, hopes, and dreams.”
He also quoted the prophet Yechezkel who once said that the “Jewish people will return to the Jewish homeland,” and they did. Danon proclaimed “we came home.” He continued to describe the importance of the state of Israel on a global level and stated that “we made the impossible possible.”
His speech was empowering. He made the audience of 200 people (which included diplomats, journalists and students) understand the major role that the modern State of Israel plays. He boldly stated “The nation of Israel lives, the beauty of Israel lives, and the nation of Israel will prevail forever.”
Vice President Pence spoke next. In his speech he made it very clear that as long as Donald Trump is president, the United States will always stand with Israel. Pence said, “If the world knows nothing else, the world will know this: America stands with Israel because her cause is our cause.”
On top of all of this, Vice President Pence made the first statement about moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which was very exciting to hear. He was very encouraging and made me feel proud to be a Jewish American citizen.
The end of the event was truly unbelievable. They played the original video recording of the General Assembly meeting in 1947 while the actual vote took place. As the video played, they projected a map of the world and every time a country would vote yes, the map would light up in that specific area. By the end of the recording, most of the map was actually empty, because the truth is that most of the world does not stand with Israel. Thankfully we have one ally that will never leave our side: the United States. Israeli Minister Katz made it very clear that “when Israel is strong, America is strong. When America is strong Israel is stronger”
The morning events ended with video footage of people celebrating in the streets of Israel right after it was declared a state 70 years ago. It also included live dancers in the room celebrating with the people today. Today Israel has diplomatic relations with 158 countries. We waited 2000 years, but now we are home, and we are stronger and greater than ever before!
By: Danelle Levi (9th Grade)