On April 7th, the University of Chicago’s CCAP- funded organization, Chicago Friends of Israel, hosted Ishmael Khaldi on campus. Khaldi is the first Bedouin vice consul of Israel and the first high ranking Muslim diplomat in the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

blake ishmael
CCAP Liaison and Friends of Israel President, Blake Fleisher with Ishmael Khaldi

Khaldi delivered a lecture entitled Life as a Bedouin in Israel, based on his book, A Shepherd’s Journey, during which he spoke to the campus community about Israel’s treatment of ethnic and religious minorities. In his lecture, he reiterated an important point that he touches on in many of his speeches on college campuses and interviews with the press: “Many of us [Israeli Arabs] are proud to describe ourselves as Israelis. Everyone who lives here is an Israeli.”

Khaldi’s lecture was co-sponsored by the University’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies and the Department of Political Science.

By Samantha Mandeles

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