Frisch’s Herschmann-Chouake Israel Advocacy Program Hosts Chloe Valdary

November 1, 2018

As part of the Herschmann-Chouake Israel Advocacy Program, Yeshivat Frisch was thrilled to host pro-Israel, anti-BDS activist Chloe Valdary of JerusalemU on Wednesday, October 24. Valdary, who writes for the Wall Street Journal and New York Times and was the featured speaker at this year’s Israel Summit at Harvard, spoke to the student body about how to reframe and re-humanize college campus conversations about Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through empathy, compassion and even lessons from pop culture.

Valdary, a 24-year-old Christian from New Orleans, became involved in Israel advocacy during her university years. In her presentation, she emphasized that “Israelis and Palestinians are human beings, not political abstractions,” and that this point, critical for fruitful conversations about Israel, is too often overlooked in campus conversations. Valdary also pointed out that antisemitism and racism are toxic both for the victim and the victimizer, and said that re-humanizing and refusing to pre-judge each other empowers and benefits all involved.

Valdary also spoke about a groundbreaking idea she developed called “Enchantment Theory,” which she has been utilizing to create innovative, substantive video content—including several moving documentaries—that “makes people fall in love with Israelis.”

Students left the talk empowered and inspired. “She was inspiring, thoughtful and very relatable,” said Frisch senior Naama Kaye about Valdary.