Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 2:00 PM EST

In the immediate aftermath of the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks on Israel, many American Jews proudly rushed to Israel’s defense, as they have since 1967. Unconditional support for Israel and for Zionism, the national movement that established a homeland for Jews, has been an article of faith among the vast majority of American Jews. But even before Oct. 7, that support had begun to erode especially among a younger generation of American Jews.

Join us on Thursday, July 18, at 2:00 PM EST for a timely and important one-hour conversation with American Jewish leaders who will explore the history of American Jewish support for Israel and its increasingly contested foundations.

The event is free. However, advanced registration is required at


Program Details

Yonat Shimron, RNS national reporter and senior editor, will be in conversation with Daniel Sokatch and Rabbi Alissa Wise.

Yonat Shimron is a senior editor at RNS and a North Carolina-based reporter covering Judaism, the South’s changing religious landscape and the growing nonreligious divide. Yonat Shimron joined RNS in April 2011 and became managing editor in 2013. She was the religion reporter for The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. from 1996 to 2011. During that time, she won numerous awards. She is a past president of the Religion Newswriters Association.




Daniel Sokatch has served as the CEO of the New Israel Fund since 2009. During the past decade of extraordinary challenges, NIF has risen to new heights as the great defender of justice, democracy and equality in Israel. Before joining NIF, Daniel served as the CEO of the Jewish Community Federation of an Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties. Prior to his tenure at the Federation, he was founding Executive Director of the Progressive Jewish Alliance (now Bend the Arc). In recognition of his leadership, Daniel has been named multiple times to the Forward newspaper’s “Forward 50,” an annual list of the fifty leading Jewish decision-makers and opinion-shapers. He has contributed articles to leading newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, the Forward and Haaretz, and is the author of the book, Can We Talk About Israel: A Guide for the Curious, Confused, and Conflicted (Bloomsbury, 2021). Daniel holds an MA from the Fletcher School at Tufts University, a JD from Boston College Law School, and a BA from Brandeis University. He is married, is father to two daughters, and resides in San Francisco.

Rabbi Alissa Wise is an organizer, ritual leader, and organizational steward with over two decades of movement building experience. She is currently Lead Organizer of Rabbis for Ceasefire which she founded in October 2023. She was a staff leader at Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) from 2011-2021, serving as Co-Director of Organizing, interim Executive Director, and Deputy Director. She is an in-demand public speaker and opinion writer, with work in outlets including The Guardian and Newsweek, and facilitates and coaches human rights and movement-building NGOs toward deeper strategy, organizing, and leadership. She is co-author of “Solidarity is the Political Version of Love: Lessons from Jewish Anti-Zionist Organizing“, forthcoming from Haymarket Books in September.



RNS is an independent nonprofit news organization that provides objective, in-depth religion reporting and commentary by a team of professional journalists. Founded in 1934, RNS’s mission is to improve understanding and foster discussion about religion, faith, and beliefs in everyday life. Its journalism is available for free on its website and through its podcasts, newsletters, and social media. RNS also partners with mainstream media outlets to deliver news, features, and commentary to its readers and followers. RNS is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Religion News Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization. To learn more, visit


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