web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



On Weeklong Visit, Hollywood Stars Laud Israel

Guillermo Diaz (left) and Adam Shapiro (center) at MESHI in Jerusalem, a community outreach center that assists severely disabled children. (Photo by AVI)

Guillermo Diaz (left) and Adam Shapiro (center) at MESHI in Jerusalem, a community outreach center that assists severely disabled children. (Photo by AVI)

Share Button

JERUSALEM – Despite heightened tensions with Lebanon and Syria, including Israel Air Force sorties over Damascus, a group of stars from two ABC-TV hit shows, “Scandal” and “Once Upon A Time,” participated last week in numerous indoor and outdoor activities in northern Israel, including the Golan Heights. The stars said that the American public is served a steady diet of warped images of Israel.

“There is a true misunderstanding about Israel in America. It’s most certainly not as people think and how it is portrayed in the media, which depicts only the violence and tension in the region, and why some of my friends and family were indeed nervous about us coming to Israel,” Brooklyn-born actress Lana Parrilla (“Once Upon a Time”) told The Jewish Press.

“In reality, Israel is such a wonderful place and no one in our group felt any kind of tension. In fact, we were able to go wherever we wanted and felt safe, whether it was walking on the streets of Jerusalem, jeeping across the Golan Heights, sampling wine at the beautiful Galil Mountain Winery – which is close to the Lebanese border – and even during our visit to an air base in northern Israel, which was on constant alert. The pilots and ground personnel were very friendly and went about their business in a calm manner,” Parrilla said. “The reality is that Israel is such a wonderful place, where we all felt like we had instant families wherever we went, as people were so open and friendly to us.”

Parrilla, along with Guillermo Diaz, Bellamy Young, Katie Lowes, and Adam Shapiro (all from the series, “Scandal”) and Julie Walker, the art director for the TV show, “The Mentalist,” participated in the weeklong America’s Voices in Israel (part of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations) mission, directed by Irwin Katsof. Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and El Al Airlines sponsored a portion of the AVI mission.

Bellamy Young examines a hi-tech medical device at Rambam Medical Center. (Photo by Pioter Fliter)

Bellamy Young examines a hi-tech medical device at Rambam Medical Center. (Photo by Pioter Fliter)

“Each and every day we were exposed to some fantastic experience that very few people know about or understand back home,” claimed Young. “For me the visit to the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa, where we saw a beating heart muscle that was developed from stem cell technology, was the highlight of this trip. Amazing things that will benefit humanity are taking place in those laboratories.”

To Diaz, of Washington Heights, climbing Masada was a very spiritual experience. “The creativity and the artistic talent of the people of Israel, who want to live life to the fullest, is amazing. I was even more amazed by the people who knew who I was and came over to me at the Western Wall on Friday evening – and chatting with them. Just touching the wall was a heightened experience. I felt as if the Wall had preserved all of this spiritual energy over the ages.”

The overwhelmingly positive reaction from the stars to their visit to Israel has reinforced the mission’s objectives, according to Malcolm Hoenlein, the executive vice chairman of the Presidents Conference.

“Dollar for dollar this is the most cost-efficient hasbarah [public relations] program of its kind. It is a minimal investment with a huge return,” Hoenlein told The Jewish Press. “You cannot take public opinion for granted, even though there is a pro-Israel bent across America. There are negative images on occasion out there, and once they catch on it is very hard to uproot them. These trips give the stars a unique opportunity to not only experience things but also a chance to interact with their fans.

“Young people today can’t relate to a Henry Kissinger,” Hoenlein continued, “but they can relate to a black, Hispanic or Asian authority figure or TV star who can speak directly to them via new media, etc. During the course of these AVI trips the stars are constantly Twittering to their fans or posting on Facebook. Social media is a great way to speak directly to millions of their fans. And when the stars come back to Hollywood, they also have an opportunity to circulate among friends, family and influential people, where they will speak about their encounters in Israel in a positive manner.”

Share Button

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

No Responses to “On Weeklong Visit, Hollywood Stars Laud Israel”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden
Pakistan Library Renamed to Honor bin Laden
Latest News Stories
FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden

Many Pakistanis consider bin Laden a “hero of Islam.”

Two major obstacles have kept Israel from joining the program: Allegations by U.S. officials that Israel has discriminated against Arab- and Muslim-Americans seeking entry, and a proliferation of young Israelis traveling to the United States as tourists and then working illegally.

A Lebanese man who was arrested in Thailand on suspicion of belonging to Hezbollah admitted to targeting Israelis, Thai media reported.

On Friday afternoon, Syrian fighter jets hit opposition/rebel targets and villages on the Syrian side of the Ramat HaGolan (Golan Heights), in the Quneitra region. Large pillars of smoke are seen rising from struck areas. Quneitra is the site of an official crossing between Syria and Israel on the Golan. IAF jets were sent out […]

As Rabbi Stav said, “You’re free to think what you want. But do you want me to recognize Chelsea Clinton’s child as a Jew?”

Chimpanzees and Orangutans eat Matza, unleavened bread traditionally eaten during the Passover holiday, at the Ramat Gan Safari on Thursday, April 17, 2014. I hope they can digest it. On Passover no leavened bread (Chametz) is allowed in Jewish possession, and that includes food we feed our animals.

Following intelligence reports of further expected Arab rioting and violence on the Temple Mount today, the police have placed restrictions on Muslim entry to the Jewish holy site, according to a report on Arutz-7. Entry will be limited to Muslims over the age of 50, and women, also they must be Israeli citizens or residency […]

PA President Abbas’s refusal to publicly condemn the terror attack that killed Baruch Mizrachi is putting a damper on the parade.

The Shas political party, founded and run by the late Rav Ovadia Yosef, has a appointed a new spiritual leader, according to a Galei Tzahal report. The rabbi chosen to replace Harav Ovadia and be the new president of the party’s Council of Torah Sages is Rabbi Shalom Cohen. Aryeh Deri is the political leader […]

In 1941, the Jews of Kiev received a similar leaflet. When they showed up the next day, more than 34,000 were murdered.

Teen stabbed in South Florida high school.

The Kotel Plaza, the stairs, the Kotel entrance, the roads, everything was packed for Birkat Cohanim – the Priestly Blessing of the People – now imagine if this had been held on top of Har HaBayit, the Temple Mount!

Four Israeli citizens were hurt Thursday in a road terror attack near Tekoa in Gush Etzion.

Israel Police closed access to the Temple Mount to Jews and other non-Muslims on Thursday due to Arab violence.

Jews in Donetsk, Ukraine this week were ordered to “register” themselves and their assets.

U.S. Special Envoy to the Middle East Martin Indyk is on his way back to the region to revive talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

More Articles from Steve K. Walz

Kerry reportedly admitted that he had “made a mistake.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Jerusalem on March 31.
(Photo by Amos Ben Gershom/ GPO/FLASH90)

Before returning to Washington, Abbas reiterated to Kerry in a face-to-face meeting in Ramallah that the PA and the Arab League would never recognize the existence of a Jewish state in Israel.

Dechner admitted funneling significant amounts of money to the defendants in order to move the Holyland project forward.

On Tuesday, the London Daily Telegraph reported that an intelligence source involved with the secretive investigation into the plane’s disappearance claimed that the incident might have been part of a deliberate suicide mission by one of the pilots or someone on board the aircraft. International aviation experts, including Israeli officials, believe that someone deliberately punched in a computer rerouting code shortly after takeoff.

According to Arab and Israeli media sources, Abbas steadfastly demanded that the White House prod Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu into releasing convicted killers Marwan Barghouti and Ahmad Sa’adat. He also reportedly insisted that Israel freeze all settlement construction activities in exchange for extending the peace talks until the end of the year.

JERUSALEM – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the international community on Monday for turning a blind eye to Iran’s continued attempts to foment global terrorism.

Despite Obama’s threat of military force against Assad unless he relinquishes his chemical weapons cache, Assad has repeatedly failed to meet UN deadlines to deliver his deadly arsenal to a special arms disposal unit.

IAF jets and advanced drones have been aggressively monitoring the transfer of advanced Russian and Iranian made weaponry from Syria to Hizbullah bases in Lebanon.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel/on-weeklong-visit-hollywood-stars-laud-israel/2013/05/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: