Elie Wiesel will attend Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s speech in Congress next month, activist Rabbi Shmuley Boteach announced Thursday.
He also said he is buying advertising space in The New York Times and The Washington Post to promote Wiesel’s decision, with the Holocaust survivor and Nobel Prize winner stating:
I plead with you to put aside the politics that have obscured the critical decisions to be made. Surely it is within your power to find a solution that will permit Israel’s Prime Minister to deliver his urgent message. Will you join me in hearing the case for keeping weapons from those who preach death to Israel and America?
Wiesel’s support for the Prime Minister’s controversial visit may slow down, if not reverse, the rush of many Congressmen to boycott the speech because it will be delivered two weeks before elections in Israel.
The speech also comes three weeks before President Barack Obama and Iran may agree on terms for a deal on containing Tehran’s nuclear development. Prime Minister Netanyahu will focus on the Iranian nuclear threat in his speech, emphasizing that Iran is stalling for time and not conducting honest negotiations.
Wiesel carries a big stick in American public opinion, and President Obama is known to have warm regard for him.