Independence MK Einat Wilf makes it her Pessah mission to improve Israel’s image abroad, publishing articles in US papers, taking a trip to Canada.
By LAHAV HARKOV – Published in the Jerusalem Post
While many spent the days leading up to Passover cooking and cleaning, MK Einat Wilf (Independence) took a four-day trip to Canada to improve Israel’s image there.
Wilf visited Halifax, Montreal and Ottowa, on a trip sponsored by the Centre for Jewish and Israel Affairs. According to Wilf, the CIJA has played an instrumental role in bringing Canada and Israel closer in recent years. During her trip, she gave lectures and published articles in major news media.
One article, in The Huffington Post, was a response to a New York Times op-ed by Peter Beinart calling for a “Zionist BDS,” boycotting products of settlements.
Wilf called Beinart’s suggestion “a dangerous proposal” despite his good intentions, saying that “no Palestinian is a partner to the idea that Zionism is legitimate as long as it stays west of the Green Line.”
Wilf agreed to be a regular contributor to “Open Zion,” an Israel-themed section of the Newsweek-affiliated news site, The Daily Beast, which Beinart edits. So far, the MK has written about the reason behind the Independence faction’s formation and a defense of Zionism from an atheist point of view.
Wilf’s final stop before returning to Israel was in Ottawa, where she met with Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird. Wilf and Baird met previously during his trip to Israel in January, during which he invited her to visit him in Canada.
Wilf, who is one of five MKs in Defense Minister Ehud Barak’s breakaway Independence faction, briefed MPs and top foreign ministry officials in the Middle East and North Africa department and gave interviews to the Canadian press.
In Halifax, Wilf met with Nova Scotia Education Minister Ramona Jennex and learned about the Canadian education system, examining the possibility of bringing reforms to Israel. Wilf also gave lectures in the local Jewish communities on women and education in Israel.
Wilf then traveled to Montreal, where she hosted a workshop at McGill University on Israeli diplomacy and Zionism.
From there, she went on to Quebec City to discuss Israel with Quebecois MPs. Wilf is fluent in French, and said she was able to hold a conversation that strengthened the connection between the Knesset and Quebec’s parliament.
After her meetings in Ottawa, Wilf flew back to Israel, returning only a few hours before her family’s Seder in Tel Aviv.