At the National AIPAC policy conference in Washington, DC, I attended the talk given by Israel’s new Ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, on the topic of Israel’s relations with Jordan and Egypt. His talk spanned Egyptian history from the time of the Pharaohs and the creation of Trans-Jordan after WWI to the present. It was a tour de force as were the other talks I have heard him give. Oren is, among other things, a great scholar. He is the author of the best selling book, Power,Faith and Fantasy: America in the Middle East, 1776 to the Present. My review of it appears here.
I can think of no better representative for Israel in this country than Oren. He is a true Renaissance man: an athlete, a historian, a journalist, a veteran of the IDF, and a recent representative for the Israeli military during the fighting in Gaza.
He is also a mensch. A beautiful account by Dan Gordon, who fought alongside him, appears in The American Thinker. Gordon captures the nature of Oren the man. Our experience with Michael confirms this. Friends introduced us, and then invited us to their home for lunch with Michael and his wife Sally. Michael went out of his way to offer his help on various matters concerned with publication of our new book. He gave us advice on publicity, problems with the book industry and how to circumvent them, what we could do to make it a success, and the editing process. Then he kindly offered to read the manuscript, gave us a wonderful blurb, and phoned or emailed us with corrections when he found errors.
Michael will have a lot on his plate as Israel’s Ambassador. No one is better equipped to handle the job than he. I predict that Michael will go down in history as one of Israel’s greatest Ambassadors, a man who will be as well known and highly regarded as the late Abba Eban, who became Israel’s voice in the United States.
So Mazeltov, Michael. You will make Israel proud.