Photo Credit: GPO
Israel's Presidential Medal of Honor

President Isaac Herzog will award his American counterpart the Israeli Presidential Medal of Honor in a festive ceremony at the President’s Residence next week in recognition of “his true friendship with the State of Israel, the people of Israel, and the Jewish People; his uncompromising decades-long commitment to Israel’s security; his contributions to deepening, strengthening, and enhancing the strong and unwavering alliance between Israel and the United States of America; and his struggle against anti-Israeli and antisemitic hatred around the world,” the president’s office said.

The Presidential Medal of Honor is awarded to individuals who have made an extraordinary contribution to the State of Israel or to humanity through their talents, their service, or in any other way.


The award, initiated by the late President Shimon Peres, was first awarded in 2012.

To date, the honor has been bestowed on 26 individuals, on the recommendation of an advisory committee headed at the time by the late retired Supreme Court President, Justice Meir Shamgar.

When Isaac Herzog became president, he reconstituted the advisory committee under the chairmanship of the retired Supreme Court Justice Prof. Yoram Danziger, to examine candidates for the receipt of this honor.

Former recipients of the Presidential Medal of Honor include US President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, former Chief Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Elie Wiesel, Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, and more.

Next week, Herzog will award the Presidential Medal of Honor to US President Joe Biden in a festive ceremony at the President’s Residence during his visit.

Biden arrives in the Jewish State next Wednesday afternoon (July 13) and will visit until Friday morning (July 15).

In its reasoning, the Presidential Medal of Honor advisory committee noted in a statement:

“President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. is a true friend of the State of Israel and the Jewish People. The United States of America is Israel’s closest ally, a fact to which the President of the United States gives expression in word and deed. Since the start of President Biden’s rich career in public service in the 1970s, he has established himself as a person who loves Israel and is a true friend of the whole Jewish People.

“For half a century, the President has stood by the State of Israel, has given his unconditional support to its right to exist, and has fought with determination to expand U.S. assistance to Israel.

“In this, the President gives expression in word and deed to the importance of the alliance between Israel and the United States, to his commitment to deepen the cooperation between them, to his support for Israel’s security, and to his commitment to firmly confront antisemitism.”


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.