The World Affairs Councils of America (WACA) Delegation to Israel: June 2 – 10, 2016
The America Israel Friendship League renewed its relationship with the World Affairs Councils of America and hosted a successful collaborative delegation with the nonprofit. WACA, which like the AIFL is dedicated to educating and engaging the American public on critical global issues which includes those that affect the State of Israel.
The delegation under the leadership of WACA President and CEO, William ‘Bill’ Clifford, included outstanding members (listed below) from the business, civic and education communities from across the country representing eight of the nearly 100 independent, non-profit, non-partisan councils from Alaska to Puerto Rico.
- Lise Falskow, Alaska
- Mitchell Abrams, Pennsylvania
- Rajesh Naik, Georgia
- Serge Tomassian, California
- Karen Burghart, Colorado
- Mary Yntema, Massachusetts
- Michael Philip, California
- Mr. and Mrs. Lee Pasquarella, Washington
- Katherine Keck, California
- Arun Joshi, Oregon
The delegation gained great insight into the inner workings of Israeli democracy with briefings and discussions which included topics on national security, cyber security, and international law with members of the diplomatic corps, including Amb. Sallai Meridor, former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S.; representatives of the Israeli Defense Force, Major (Res.) Sarit Zehavi as well as notable Palestinian journalist and film maker, Khaled Abu Toameh.
They also enjoyed a number of cultural activities, which included Shabbat dinner and were hosted for Jerusalem Day celebrations by the Mayor of Jerusalem, Nir Barkat and his wife. They also had the opportunity to visit Holy Sites in the Old City of Jerusalem; Yad Vashem; Golan Heights; while enjoying a tour of and a night at Kibbutz Nof Ginosar with a tour of the Holy Sites on the Sea of Galilee; and a tour of Masada and the Dead Sea.
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