Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF) - Remembering Our Past, Shaping Our Future


Commemorative Presentation in Jerusalem (SJR27) - Brief Overview

Alabama Recognizes Jerusalem as the Eternal Undivided Capital of Israel
and Affirms U.S. Embassy Move in Historic Resolution

What: Honoring Alabama’s historic recognition of Jerusalem with presentation and photos in the Chagall State Hall of the Israeli Knesset in Jerusalem, with special delegation from the state of Alabama and the Israeli Speaker of the Knesset, Yuli Edelstein. Alabama recognized Jerusalem as the “eternal undivided capital” of Israel and affirmed the U.S. Embassy move in a historic joint resolution. It was the first state to formally do so, and it originated from the same legislative body that - over 75 years ago, in the midst of World War II - formally called for the recognition of the Jewish state and homeland through a unanimous joint resolution five years before Israel was reborn as a nation.

When: 12:30pm Wednesday November 6th, 2019

Where
: The Knesset, Chagall State Hall, Givat Ram, Jerusalem, Israel

Commemorative Presentation in Jerusalem (SJR27) - The Record
Israeli Knesset, Chagall State Hall ~ 12:30pm Wednesday November 6th, 2019
Overview - Summary/Links/Photos (HTML) • Photo Album (HTML)

Official Presentation in Montgomery (SJR27) - The Record
Alabama State Capital, Old House Chamber ~ 3:30pm Monday May 20th, 2019
Overview - Summary/Links/Photos (HTML) • Photo Album (HTML)


Alabama’s Historic Recognition of Jerusalem
Israeli Knesset, Chagall State Hall ~ 12:30pm Wednesday November 6th, 2019

A delegation from the state of Alabama met with the Israeli Speaker of the Knesset in Jerusalem to commemorate, honor, and celebrate a historic moment in the Alabama-Israel relationship.

Through the last 76 years there have been many special moments in the relationship between the state of Alabama and the state of Israel, but there are two moments, that are not only deeply meaningful, but when Alabama led the nation: The first a historic joint resolution in 1943 (regarding Israel), and now a historic joint resolution in 2019 (regarding Jerusalem).

In 1943, in the midst of World War II, when the Axis powers were not only waging world war against America and Europe, but also seeking the systematic extermination of the Jewish people, Alabama led the nation with an official call for the establishment of the Jewish state and homeland through a unanimous joint resolution five years before Israel was reborn as a nation

In 2019, carrying on this very special legacy, Alabama recognized Jerusalem as the “eternal undivided” capital of Israel and affirmed the U.S. Embassy move in a historic joint resolution regarding Jerusalem. Israel recognizes Jerusalem as its eternal undivided capital, and many of Israel’s closest friends and allies refer to Jerusalem often in the same way, but this is the first formal recognition that does so, and it originated from the same legislative body that - over 75 years ago, in the midst of World War II – formally called for the recognition of the Jewish state and homeland.

Among other, the 2019 resolution highlights Jerusalem has never been the capital of any other sovereign nation, Israelís right under international law and custom to designate its own capital, Jerusalemís imposed division and later reunification that made whole again the nationís historic capital, and the overwhelming bipartisan support of the Jerusalem Embassy Act that has been encoded in U.S. law for over two decades that included Jerusalemís recognition as capital and required the embassy move.

So Alabama and Israeli leaders gathered in the Chagall State Hall in the Israeli Knesset in Jerusalem, the very place where Israel declared Jerusalem to be its undivided capital, and the very capitol building where Israel's national parliament convenes.

Senator Orr, Senator Waggoner – Thank you for your leadership and for sponsoring and co-sponsoring this historic joint resolution in the Senate. Speaker McCutcheon, Representative Gaston, Representative Jones – Thank you for your leadership and support for this historic joint resolution in the House. Governor Ivey - Thank you for your leadership and support for this historic joint resolution from your office, and for many years of tremendous support for a strong Alabama-Israel relationship. And thank you to our Alabama delegation for sharing in this very special moment.

AL SJR27 Presentation in Jerusalem - The Resolution (PDF) • Letter from Governor (PDF) • Photo Album

Resolution Text (Act 66, SJR 27, 2019 Regular Session) - Typed (PDF) • Scanned (PDF)



Israeli Knesset
Israel's Capitol Building, Israel's National Parliament
Main Entrance (4th Floor)
Givat Ram, Jerusalem, Israel

The Knesset main entrance is on the 4th floor, which includes the Chagall State Hall where the commemorative presentation of SJR27 occurred. The Knesset is Israel's capitol building and where Israel's national parliament convenes. The term "Knesset" is derived from the ancient Hebrew for "Great Assembly".



Israeli Chagall State Hall
The Knesset (4th Floor), Givat Ram, Jerusalem, Israel

The 4th Floor of the Israeli Knesset includes the Chagall State Hall where the commemoration of SJR27 occurred. The hall is used for receptions and official events. It is decorated with three tapestries and mosaics with the themes adapted from Jewish history: The right tapestry is “Vision of the Final Redemption,” the center is “Exodus,” and the left is “Return to Zion.”



COMMEMORATION

The SJR27 commemoration begins in the Chagall State Hall of the Israeli Knesset, the very place where Israel declared Jerusalem to be its undivided capital, and the very capitol building where Israel's national parliament convenes.



HEBREW WELCOME AND INTRODUCTIONS

Hebrew welcome and introductions were given by Eeki Elner, Director of the Israel Leadership Institute (ILI) based in Sderot, Israel. Mr. Elner also hosted our delegation from Alabama for briefings on the southern border of Israel in Sderot, and on the northern border of Israel in the Golan Heights. In addition, working together for the mutual benefit of our people, the ILI is a strategic partner for a number of state-to-state initiatives between Alabama and Israel.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; Eeki Elner, Director Israel Leadership Institute (ILI);



THE PRESENTATION - COMMEMORATIVE PLAQUE

Commemorative plaque inscribed with the actual text of the historic resolution (SJR27) recognizing Jerusalem as the eternal undivided capital of Israel and affirming the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. The commemorative plaque was presented by Alabama leadership to the Israeli Speaker of the Knesset, Yuli Edelstein.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset;



THE PRESENTATION - ALABAMA TO ISRAEL

Inscribed is the full text of the Alabama resolution (SJR27). Among other, the resolution highlights Jerusalem has never been the capital of any other sovereign nation, Israel’s right under international law and custom to designate its own capital, Jerusalem’s imposed division and later reunification that made whole again the nation’s historic capital, and the overwhelming bipartisan support of the Jerusalem Embassy Act that has been encoded in U.S. law for over two decades that included Jerusalem’s recognition as capital and required the embassy move.

The resolution concludes with:

“BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA, BOTH HOUSES THEREOF CONCURRING, That we do unequivocally recognize Jerusalem as the eternal undivided capital of Israel, and do fully affirm and celebrate the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.”

“BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That it is directed that copy of this resolution be forwarded to the President of the United States, to the Alabama Delegation to the United States Congress, to the Governors of all the United States of America, and to the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., for transmission to all the proper authorities in the State of Israel.”

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly, Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);

Resolution Text (Act 66, SJR 27, 2019 Regular Session) - Typed (PDF) • Scanned (PDF)



THE PRESENTAION - ALABAMA STATE FLAG

Gift of an encased Alabama State Flag was presented in commemoration of the special moment, and as a reminder of our deeply shared values and of the tremendous love, commitment, and support from the people of the state of Alabama.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly, Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



THE PRESENTATION - ALABAMA TO ISRAEL

The Alabama State Flag presented by Alabama leadership to Israeli leadership in the Chagall State Hall of the Israeli Knesset.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly, Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



THE PRESENTATION - LETTER FROM THE GOVERNOR

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey sent a personal letter to Israeli Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein to be read during the presentation sharing her sentiments on this special occasion. It highlighted the state of Alabama’s recognition of Jerusalem (SJR27) being commemorated, recalled the Speaker's remarks from Jerusalem during a statewide Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala in 2017, and underscored her commitment to a strong state-to-state relationship.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly, Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



PERSONAL LETTER FROM THE GOVERNOR

AL SJR27 Presentation in Jerusalem - Letter from Governor (PDF)



THE WITNESS - ALABAMA TO ISRAEL

In closing, as the signed resolution (SJR27) and the personal letter were about to be presented to Israeli leadership, there was a pause and then a sincere heart-felt expression from Alabama leadership:

“We love you. We stand with you. And we bear witness to the truth ... Jerusalem is the eternal undivided capital of Israel.”

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly, Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



SPONTANEOUS APPLAUSE

Spontaneous applause erupted as the personal signed letter from the Alabama governor and the official signed joint resolution from the Alabama legislature (SJR27) were presented to Speaker Edelstein.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly (AL), Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017); Eeki Elner, Director Israel Leadership Institute (ILI);



REMARKS FROM ISRAEL

Leadership from Israel expressed deep gratitude on behalf of the state of Israel to the Governor, the Alabama Legislature, and the state of Alabama for the strong and unequivocal support as expressed through the historic joint resolution SJR27 – formally recognizing Jerusalem as the eternal undivided capital of Israel, and affirming the U.S. Embassy move.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly (AL), Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



REMARKS FROM ISRAEL

Leadership from Israel expressed sincere appreciation to the people of the state of Alabama for the tremendous love, support, and commitment to stand with Israel in these challenging times.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset; George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly (AL), Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



REMARKS FROM ISRAEL

Leadership from Israel with closing remarks to the delegation from Alabama on behalf of the state of Israel, speaking in the Chagall State Hall of the Israeli Knesset in Jerusalem.

Pictured: Yuli Edelstein, Israeli Speaker of the Knesset;



ISRAELI LEADERSHIP - ALABAMA DELEGATION

Israeli Speaker of the Knesset, Yuli Edelstein, with many from the Alabama Delegation, together at the Knesset in Jerusalem. A delegation of 50 from the state of Alabama shared in the commemoration, including Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF) leadership and many from the congregation of Calvary Assembly who helped host the statewide Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala in 2017.



Twelve Israeli Flags - The Knesset
The Knesset (4th Floor, Main Entrance), Givat Ram, Jerusalem, Israel

Exiting the 4th Floor (Main Entrance) of the Knesset where the commemoration of SJR27 occurred, Twelve Israeli Flags provide yet another witness to the miracle of the rebirth of the Jewish State in its ancient Homeland.



Testimony at Knesset Gate - Seven-Branched Candlestick (Menorah)

Across from the main gate of the Knesset stands a Seven-Branched Candlestick (Menorah), a reminder of the Biblical Seven-Branched Candlestick (Menorah). The original menorah, a seven-branched candelabra, stood in the Biblical Temple in Jerusalem. It has also served as a symbol of the Jewish people since ancient times. Upon the foundation of the State of Israel, it was chosen as its national emblem.



U.S. EMBASSY - JERUSALEM, ISRAEL

Just before the commemorative presentation at the Knesset, the Alabama Delegation visited the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. In the resolution (SJR27), Alabama not only fully recognized Jerusalem but also affirmed and celebrated the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. For many the timing was also especially meaningful as the resolution had passed the Alabama Legislature just days before the Biblical Passover began. The Alabama Governor signed it several days later on the morning of Tuesday April 23rd, just two weeks before the anniversary of Israel's Independence, also the anniversary of the U.S. Embassy opening in Jerusalem.



ALABAMA SIGNED RESOLUTION - U.S. EMBASSY JERUSALEM

In the resolution (SJR27), Alabama not only fully recognized Jerusalem but also affirmed and celebrated the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. Here, at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, is the signed resolution that would afterward be presented to the Israeli Speaker of the Knesset.

What had been U.S. law for over two decades was finally implemented with the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. There was overwhelming bipartisan support for the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act that encoded in U.S. law the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and required the U.S. Embassy move by 1999 (though U.S. administrations had temporarily delayed the embassy move every 6 months with waivers). In 2017 the U.S. Senate (90-0) specifically reaffirmed the Jerusalem Embassy Act as part of a resolution commemorating the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem. It was finally announced on December 6, 2017, that the United States would no longer extend the 22-year delay, would implement the 1995 law as enacted, would officially recognize Jerusalem as capital of Israel, and would relocate the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem as required by U.S. law. The U.S. Embassy was officially opened in Jerusalem on May 14, 2018, the 70th anniversary of the Israeli Declaration of Independence.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): John Buhler, Co-Chair Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF); George Sawyer, Pastor Calvary Assembly (AL), Co-Host Alabama-Israel Leadership Gala (2017);



ALABAMA DELEGATION - U.S. EMBASSY JERUSALEM

Alabama leadership and delegation together with the signed resolution (SJR27) at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem. This signed resolution, fully recognizing Jerusalem and celebrating the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, would afterward be presented personally to Israeli leadership at the Knesset.



GRATITUDE

Senator Orr, Senator Waggoner – Thank you for your leadership and for sponsoring and co-sponsoring this historic joint resolution in the Alabama Senate. Speaker McCutcheon, Representative Gaston, Representative Jones – Thank you for your leadership and support for this historic joint resolution in the Alabama House. Governor Ivey - Thank you for your leadership and support for this historic joint resolution from your office, and for many years of tremendous support for a strong Alabama-Israel relationship. And thank you to our Alabama delegation for sharing in this very special moment.

Pictured (Left-to-Right): Senator Arthur Orr, Sponsor SJR27; Senator Jabo Waggoner, Co-Sponsor SJR27; Representative Mac McCutcheon, Speaker of the House; Together holding the joint resolution (SJR27) regarding Jerusalem in the Old Alabama Senate Chamber of the Alabama State Capitol in Montgeomery, the very place where the historic resolution regarding Israel (SJR4) originated from in 1943.

Resolution Text (Act 66, SJR 27, 2019 Regular Session) - Typed (PDF) • Scanned (PDF)

Official Presentation in Montgomery (SJR27) - The Record
Alabama State Capital, Old House Chamber ~ 3:30pm Monday May 20th, 2019
Overview - Summary/Links/Photos (HTML) • Photo Album (HTML)



THE COMMEMORATIVE PLAQUE

Commemorative plaque inscribed with the actual text of the historic resolution (SJR27) recognizing Jerusalem as the eternal undivided capital of Israel, and affirming the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. It was presented to the Israeli Speaker of the Knesset, Yuli Edelstein.

Resolution Text (Act 66, SJR 27, 2019 Regular Session) - Typed (PDF) • Scanned (PDF)




AL SJR27 Presentation in Jerusalem - The Resolution (PDF)


THE PHOTO ALBUM

Optionally reference many more pictures in the online photo album (click graphic or link below).

Commemorative Presentation in Jerusalem (SJR27) - Photo Album


Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF) • P.O. Box 6693 • Huntsville, AL 35813 • Phone: 877.770.9387 • Email: info@AITF-Web.org • Web: www.AITF-Web.org • Facebook: AlabamaIsraelTaskForce • Twitter: @_AITF_

Alabama-Israel Task Force (AITF)