Rinder hails Magen David Adom as ‘most articulate expression of what Israel can be’
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Rinder hails Magen David Adom as ‘most articulate expression of what Israel can be’

The broadcaster praised the medical emergency service during an address to supporters at The Grove Hotel.

Justin Cohen is the News Editor at the Jewish News

MDA is “a critical tool against anti-Jewish racism,” Rinder insisted.
MDA is “a critical tool against anti-Jewish racism,” Rinder insisted.

Rob Rinder has described Magen David Adom as “the most articulate expression of what Israel is and can be” during an address to supporters of the charity.

The broadcaster reported from the border with Ukraine as Israel’s medical emergency service provided training to locals and its ambulances served on the front line transporting patients. He was also actively involved in Operation Light, when MDA’s UK arm helped to facilitate the rescue of dozens of Ukrainian orphans to the UK.

Rinder, who also pointed to the organisation’s work with the Jordanian Red Crescent, told the charity’s annual patrons dinner there was a need for supporters of the Jewish state to be armed with facts and examples to counter hate. MDA is “a critical tool against anti-Jewish racism,” he insisted.

“What more poetry than an ambulance service that isn’t funded by the state but by international diaspora, knows no borders, blood or nationality but shares everything it has. Across all of the challenges into Palestine, into hostile territory. It does so because it believes in the fundamental mission of what Judaism has at its heart which is whatever we do chai – life – is at the centre.

“MDA speaks to that better than any charity, better than any poetry, better than any example. That’s its enduring value.”

What more poetry than an ambulance service that isn’t funded by the state but by international diaspora, knows no borders, blood or nationality but shares everything it has.

He also hailed refugees minister Lord Harrington, who revealed to the gathering that 87,000 refugees had arrived in the UK under the government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme. Rinder told the minister, who is Jewish himself and whose family had been refugees, it was an achievement that was “in significant part because of you”.

The peer told the 100 guests at The Grove Hotel that he hoped the programme which sees vetted Britons take refugees into their homes “will be a model of resettling refugees for the future. For me it’s setting up machinery that can be used for any tragedy which the world throws up”.

He also hailed the response of Jewish and Israeli organisations globally since the invasion by Russia. “Every border I’ve been to is full of Magen Davids,” he said. And he heaped praise on MDA UK and chief executive Daniel Burger for its role in Operation Light, which saw it work alongside Dnipro Kids and Sally Becker.

The dinner also heard from MDA medic Katya Korshenbaum, who helped care for patients at the field hospital Israel established in Ukraine.

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