By Shmuel Sackett
Nikki Haley, America’s newest Ambassador to the United Nations, just returned from a very important international trip. It was her second trip since becoming Ambassador. Which country did she visit? Well, the UN has 193 member countries, so the choices are many. Trust me, that this is not a simple matter. This trip was a message to the world and worth our time to focus on.
Her first trip was in May to Jordan and Turkey. The purpose was to visit refugee camps, where an estimated 4 million Syrians are living, after having fled their war-torn country. The USA is the biggest financial donor to these refugees, having contributed a whopping $6.5 Billion! (Yes, that’s BILLION). Ambassador Haley visited these camps, spoke with the refugees and learned what is really happening in Syria.
Her next trip, taken just last week, was to Israel, via Geneva. She first flew to Geneva to address the UN Human Rights Council and then she flew to Israel. My question is simple: Why was it so important for the US Ambassador to the United Nations – in her second official trip - to visit Israel? Why didn’t she visit Finland, for example? I mean, who wouldn’t want to visit Finland? This is a country that is known as a nature lover’s dream. They have ice fishing expeditions and reindeer safaris! There is a part of Finland called “Finnish Lakeland” that has 55,000 different lakes. And the capital city, Helsinki, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. So why Israel?
A similar question is asked all the time about the insane media coverage that Israel receives, when compared to countries more than 100 times its size. Every day Israel is on page one or two of the NY Times and is featured daily on CNN, FOX and the BBC. It’s funny that the only time you read about Russia, is when a few people think they meddled in the US elections. And when is the last time you read about China – a small country of 1.3 Billion people? (there’s that word again; “Billion”!!) So again, why Israel?
In my humble opinion, the reason is simple: Hashem created the Land of Israel to be different from all other lands, and the world recognizes this to be true. Just like the Jewish nation is different by the fact that Hashem made us His “Chosen People”, so too the Land of Israel has been chosen by Hashem and is, in effect, “The Chosen Land”.
You need to understand that when the UN votes almost daily against Israel, they are using Israel as a way to vote against Hashem. When the NY Times bashes Israel in an article or CNN does something similar in a news program, it really has nothing to do with the little, tiny piece of real estate we call home. The world has been trying to rid itself of this nasty, annoying bug called “The Jews” for the last 3,700 years (since the days of Pharoah) yet we keep coming back. They enslave us, drown our babies, fight us in the desert, attack our cities, steal the Mishkan, destroy our Temples, drive us into exile, make up blood libels, burn our people, expel us from countries, throw us into gas chambers, bury us alive… and we are still here! And not only are we still here… we are thriving, Baruch Hashem! Our country is strong, financially independent and a true example of kindness to the entire world.
This may make you beam with pride (and it definitely should!) but to many people in the world, its proof that our Father in Heaven is the real one. To say the least, this does not make millions of people happy so they take their hatred out against us by attacking our people and our beloved Land. When today’s modern day anti-Semite sees Israel thriving as a modern, technologically advanced country, they don’t jump for joy and say; “Wow, look how – in such a short time - the Jewish people rose from the ashes of Auschwitz to build a beautiful country!” No, they don’t say that at all. Rather, many of them say the complete opposite by accusing us of going from the David of the world, to the Goliath.
There is, however, good news in all of this madness. Thank G-d, not everybody is buying the nonsense sold to us by the UN and the media. Hundreds of millions of people around the world truly love Israel and are willing to stand by the Jewish nation, shoulder-to-shoulder. One of these incredible people is Ambassador Nikki Haley who, from what I have seen so far, is a true friend. She has stood up several times in the UN on behalf of Israel and her speech in Geneva to the UN Human Rights Council was an amazing display of courage, boldness and strength.
Yes, she could have visited Finland, and maybe one day she will, but she had a message to send to the world. That message (in my words) is that Israel is the strong and proud Jewish State- given to the Jewish nation by G-d Himself close to 4,000 years ago. That land, and the people who cling to it, are indeed “Chosen” and anyone who helps them will be blessed by the One and Only G-d in Heaven who promised; “I will bless those who bless you, and he who curses you, I will curse.” (Bereisheit 12:3)
Dearest friends, if Ambassador Nikki Haley thinks this way, and I know she does, the time has come for you too as well. Finland can wait… let’s come home to Israel.