Trending Topics:

This is creepy

on 16 Comments

The Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces, which raised $20 million, tax deductible, at a recent NY fundraiser, just sent out a note to friends, and in one of the little sidebars, at the bottom on the right, you will see a headline with a (to my ear anyway) Nazi echo, "The Triumph of Will Power." Leni Riefenstahl made a famous Nazi propaganda movie called The Triumph of the Will, about the rise of Adolf Hitler. I don’t know. Call me hypersensitive. Maybe I’ve seen too many Anne Frank movies. 


Over 1,400 business and philanthropic leaders from across the United States gathered at the Waldorf=Astoria Hotel on March 9th for the annual National NY Gala to salute and demonstrate their solidarity for the soldiers of Israel.  The Chief of the IDF General Staff, Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, was the keynote speaker at the dinner which was chaired by Mr. Benny Shabatai. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who addressed the gathering via satellite, expressed his tremendous appreciation for the FIDFs support of the brave soldiers of Israel.

The $20 million raised included several major gifts:  $4 million pledged by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) founded by Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein; $750,000 from The Genesis Philanthropy, $500,000 from the Iranian American Jewish Federation of New York (IAJF); and $100,000 from fashion designer Elie Tahari. 

One of the most memorable donations was given by U.S. Marine, Sergeant Todd Bowers, who recently returned from a tour in Afghanistan. He was so moved by the event that he donated $1,000 of his own savings in memory of IDF Staff Sergeant Liran Banai. Earlier in the evening, Lirans father, Guy Banai, who is deaf and spoke via a sign language translator, described how his son wanted to serve in the IDF and died a hero in its defense.

Other notable figures present to support Israels soldiers included: IDF Spokesperson, Brig. Gen. Avi Benayahu; Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, Professor Gabriela Shalev; Israels Consul General in New York, Assaf Shariv; Israel Defense and Armed Forces Attaché to the U.S.A. and Canada, Maj. Gen. Gadi Shamni; popular Israeli musician, Idan Reichel; and renowned photojournalist Ziv Koren, who donated some of his photos for the silent auction. 30 active-duty combat soldiers, representing various IDF branches and corps also participated in the annual dinner.

Funds raised at the National NY Gala Dinner support such services as financial support to soldiers in-need and lone soldiers, academic scholarships for former combat soldiers, weeks of rest and recreation for entire IDF units, as well as cultural, educational and sports facilities. The evening was a precious opportunity to pay tribute to the IDF and send a message of love and support to the brave men and women in uniform.


Help support our brave soldiers in Israel

Enter Promotional Code "GALA2010" and receive an FIDF Gift



To learn more about the Friends of the IDF, Please visit

Copyright © 2010 Friends of the Israel Defense Forces
Friends of the Israel Defense Forces is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization.Contributions are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.


About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of

Other posts by .

Posted In:

    Leave a Reply