Friday, October 23, 2009

Obama, Netanyahu to Address General Assembly of UJC/Jewish Federations next Month; Netanyahu to Meet Obama

(WSJ,Ynet,jewishjournal).President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will both speak at a Nov. 8-10 Washington conference of the Jewish Federations of North America, according to sources familiar with the planning.

The president’s speech, his first major address to the Jewish community since his inauguration, comes at a prickly time. White House officials said in September it wanted to set a date for the formal resumption of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians by mid-October. That didn’t happen, in part because of intransigence from Palestinians and members of Netanyahu’s government.

Obama will address the 2009 General Assembly (GA) of the Jewish Federations of North America in Washington, D.C. on Monday morning, November 9.

“We are honored to be hosting President Obama at the GA,” said Dede Feinberg of Washington, who with her husband Kenneth is serving as the GA’s North America co-chair, in partnership with International Co-Chair Leonid Nevzlin of Israel.
“The voice of President Obama will surely expand our thinking and stretch our perspectives,” said Joe Kanfer, Chair of the Board of Trustees of The Jewish Federations of North America.
This year’s GA, with the theme “Remember When You Thought Anything Was Possible? It Still Is,” highlights how The Jewish Federations of North America helps the Jewish people worldwide.

The sudden decision to address a significant and high profile Jewish audience comes as poll numbers show Obama’s popularity declining among Jewish voters, and his approval ratings among Israelis in the single digits.

UJC officials are working out the final details for a live appearance by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Sources in Washington said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is likely to meet with US President Barack Obama during the United Jewish Communities General Assembly in Washington in two weeks.

As of yet no official announcement of a scheduled meeting has been made, but sources believe that Netanyahu will not visit Washington without meeting with the American president.