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Glenn Beck and wife Tania
Glenn Beck and wife Tania

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Michele Bachmann
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Michele Bachmann
Beatrice and Cantor Joseph Malovany with Michele Bachmann
Beatrice and Cantor Joseph Malovany with Michele Bachmann
Glenn Beck, Michele Bachmann, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Morton Klein
Glenn Beck, Michele Bachmann, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Morton Klein
Bachmann, Beck Bring Out
The Zion in Christian Hearts

EP. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) and conservative commentator Glenn Beck (formerly of Fox News) competed with each other with pro-Israel sentiments.

Of course, thatís to be expected at the 114th anniversary award dinner of the Zionist Organization of America at the Grand Hyatt in Manhattan. As president Morton A. Klein pointed out, "We are an organization thatís proud to have Zionist prominently in its name."

"I am a lover of Israel," Bachmann, 55, affirmed. She said the real threat to Israel is not a Palestinian state but a nuclear Iran. "We must stand with Israel against Iran."

In forceful tones she added, "We must sell additional bunker busters to Israel. We should move our U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Jerusalem will never be divided. Not one inch of Israel will be on the chopping block."

In a private conversation with me, Bachmann, an Evangelical Christian, mentioned how thrilled she was to spend the summer of 1974 as a volunteer in Israel after high school in Anoka, Minn. At the time she was Michele Amble, 18, one of 17 teenagers from the Twin Cities on a mission sponsored by Young Life, a Christian ministry.

"I stayed in Kibbutz Beeri at Beersheba," she said. "Weíd get up at 4 in the morning, pick weeds in the cotton fields till noon, work in the kitchen, then pass out in the afternoon. It was one of the greatest times of my life."

Ros-Lehtinen, 59, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, insisted that Palestinian statehood is a threat to the state of Israel, along with a nuclear Iran. She also applauded the administration on its opposition to Unesco policy. "Money talks at the UN. Why should we send our money to reward bad practices?"

ZOA board member Harvey Friedman, described a visit to Ros-Lehtinen office in Washington. She is the first Cuban American and Hispanic elected to Congress. He told her, "Iím not here to ask for anything. I just want to thank you. You have a Yiddishe neshama."

The Congresswoman, an Episcopalian, asked her intern, an Orthodox Jew with payot, "Yankel, whatís a Yiddishe neshama?"

Yankel said itís a great compliment, meaning "you have a Jewish soul."

"I like that," she replied.

Friedman told the dinner audience that Ros-Lehtinenís maternal grandparents were Jews from Turkey who came to Cuba and founded the first Sephardic synagogue there.

Glenn Beck, 47, a Mormon who calls himself a proud Christian Zionist, said that on his visit to Israel this year he went to the Western Wall at two in the morning. He was amazed to see Jews there at that hour. "Name any place in the Christian world where they pray 24/7."

On his trip to Auschwitz this summer he entered a room filled with prayer shawls. "It was profound darkness, yet people still worshiped God. "What does it take for a man in that position to not give up on God? The world does not hate you. The enemy of God hates you."

In Poland Beck met with a righteous gentile who saved 500 Jews. He sat with her for an hour and held her hand. "We didnít become righteous," she insisted. "We just remained human."


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