Hanukkah recounts the story of the Maccabees and a small band of fighters, resisting a tyrannical king from, what is now, Syria, forcing Jews in Jerusalem to worship a god not their own. Judah Maccabee and his band of brothers fought valiantly for their freedom for three years, defeating their oppressors, and recontroling the holy temple in Jerusalem. To light their menorah, they had only enough oil for one night – yet by a small miracle, the oil lasted eight nights. And thus, for the last 2200 years, Jews have celebrated this victory of self-determination and miracle of light of the Hanukkah story.
Yet make no mistake that the Jewish story of Hanukkah is not simply a thing of the past. Jewish Americans today are targeted by hateful criminals in a kosher store in New Jersey, or in synagogues in Pittsburgh, or Poway, California. On American college campuses, Jewish students are targeted by the radical left for daring to support our strongest ally in the Middle East, Israel.
On Wednesday, December 11, President Trump signed an Executive Order, that will cut off aid to colleges and universities that tolerate or promote anti-Semitism. I thank President Trump for his continued bold vision of a world free of anti-Semitism and acting when others will not. President Trump also fulfilled his campaign promise to move the American embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
When I am elected to Congress I will support our great ally Israel and fight to end anti-Semitism here at home.
This Hanukkah and Christmas season we should all celebrate our gifts of freedom and friendship.