The Orthodox Union is organizing a fly-in on September 9 prior to Rosh Hashanah to lobby against the Iran nuclear deal. The historic mission will include a Rabbis’ Vigil adjacent to the steps of the Capitol, where the OU has been working and coordinating with AIPAC. The vigil, currently scheduled at noon in between lobbying activities to take place both beforehand and afterwards, will consist of a short program including brief addresses as well as the recitation of tehillim. Designed to bring together rabbis, synagogue and community leaders in a show of community solidarity in opposition to the deal, the vigil is intended to send a powerful message of unity.
“We are expecting hundreds of rabbanim and various community leaders,” said Allen Fagin, Executive Vice President of the OU. “It’s enormously important to demonstrate the solidarity of the Orthodox community in a very concrete way in opposition to this bill, and to project to Congress a clear understanding about the depth of communal feeling even beyond what this specific bill confers, in regards to vigilance about Iran. Even if the bill passes, the highest level of scrutiny of all Iran’s activities must be maintained, everything must be carefully monitored because of all the ways in which Iran has demonstrated its predilections and carried out terrorist activities. This bad deal is one piece of the picture…we must remain enormously vigilant as we confront the future.”
“The OU, together with the RCA, are mounting this rally to oppose the Iran deal… hundreds of rabbis are coming to Washington just days before Rosh Hashanah to send a moral message about how unified we are in our opposition to this bill. It is critical that as many rabbis as possible attend,” said Nathan Diament, Executive Director of the Orthodox Union Advocacy Center.
Several New Jersey rabbis are registered to participate in the mission including Rabbi Shalom Baum of Congregation Keter Torah in Teaneck (who is also the president of the RCA); Rabbi Binyamin Krohn of the Young Israel of Teaneck; and Rabbi Menachem Genack of Shomrei Emunah of Englewood (and CEO of OU Kosher), who told the Jewish Link: “It’s imperative to come and make your voice heard. This is such a bad deal, such a dangerous proposition. We must grab this opportunity to oppose this historically bad decision. Like those 400 rabbis who marched on Washington in 1943, those who didn’t come felt regret.”
It’s crucial that even more make it a priority to attend this important mission. There is no charge for the mission. All meals and transportation costs within DC will be covered. Mission participants must only pay for their own travel to Washington and hotel costs.
“We are confident that hundreds of rabbis traveling to Washington on the eve of this vote and just days before Rosh Hashanah will have a highly visible and real impact upon this fateful vote in Congress,” advised a save-the-date notice sent this week by the OU’s Washington office to rabbis affiliated with the umbrella group and with the Rabbinical Council of America. “We will only have this impact with your participation.”
Congress has until mid-to-late September to review the deal, but may vote as soon as September 10.
To register, go to http://advocacy.ou.org/emergency-iranmission/.
By Lisa Matkowsky