Tens of thousands are expected to rally in support of Israel on the National Mall in Washington on Nov. 14 in what is predicted to be the largest U.S. demonstration in support of the Jewish state since the years of the Second Intifada from 2000-05.
Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, told JNS that the need to identify with Israel is as strong today as it was when he helped organize the National Rally in Solidarity with Israel in the wake of Passover suicide bombing by Hamas in 2002.
“People at that time were truly motivated. They felt it was a personal assault, and felt the need to identify with Israel and Israelis as they do now,” he said. “It shows that the Jewish community can come together at a time of distress and challenge.”
The Conference of Presidents is one of many Jewish organizations that is organizing Tuesday’s March for Israel.
Jewish and non-Jewish politicians, civil society leaders and celebrities are expected to speak at the rally, including actress Debra Messing; political commentator Van Jones; human-rights activist Natan Sharansky; and a bipartisan group of congressional leaders.
Family members of American hostages whom Hamas terrorists kidnapped during the Oct. 7 attacks are also slated to speak.
Hoenlein said that event organizers are trying to display the full breadth of U.S. support for Israel across the political spectrum.
“It’s very important that this is seen as Jewish manifestation but also an American manifestation—not only in support for Israel and the release of the hostages, and against antisemitism, but also an understanding that the world changed after Oct. 7,” he said. “The unity in our community is almost unprecedented.”
A White House official told JNS on Monday that Ambassador Deborah Lipstadt, U.S. special envoy to monitor and combat antisemitism, will speak at the rally, representing the Biden administration.
The March for Israel is working closely with federal and local law enforcement to ensure that Tuesday’s rally is safe. Hoenlein told JNS there will be four miles of fencing erected, and hundreds of security guards will be on hand.
“There’s probably the most expensive security preparations,” he said. “We are going to take precautions given the tenor of the times.”
The March for Israel is scheduled for 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Nov. 14 between 4th and 12th streets in Washington, D.C.