Jewish Guy of the Week – Aaron

Where can we find you on a Friday night?
At the fledging GW student minyan in the basement of Hillel or when I want to get my sing on at Kesher’s Carlebach Minyan.

What brought you to DC?
The 2016 Presidential Elections. I figured I’d start an early bid to become the 45th or 46th Commander in Chief depending on your political forecasting. Joking aside, I came for grad school which I should be finishing in a couple of months. I’ve been working towards my M.A. in U.S. Foreign Policy. I’ve always been interested in understanding the motivations and interests for American global hegemony!

What is your favorite region/area of policy interest?
Most issues pertaining to Iran and Turkey usually rock my Casbah.  The way I see the region’s current geopolitics, Turkey has become an increasingly pivotal player in facilitating dialogue between the United States and some of its fiercest adversaries. It’s kind of like the new Switzerland with a twist. And as far as Iran goes… Let’s just say my sense of the country’s future well-being and leadership is as clear as the eventual intent of Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

What is the highlight of your week?
I love taking runs around the National Mall. I also play chess once a week with an elderly man in a local nursing home. I challenge and strongly encourage every GTJ community member to make the time to donate at least 1 hour/week  for the betterment of others. There are many opportunities around this town for you to reach out and make a difference in someone else’s world. Nursing homes, food kitchens, tutoring, hospital visits, and cleanup projects are all good starting points. It is a great way to give back to the community, and it’s amazing how much you can actually gain as a person when you give of yourself  on a consistent basis.

We heard your family is from Morocco, tell us your favorite part about your culture?
Well it gives me great pleasure to have family history from a country that can serve cigars as an entree and where there is more sugar in a glass of tea than actual tea. The intricate and colorful traditional dress and music are enough to keep the eyes and ears pleased for a lifetime. However, I must spill the beans on something.  To the surprise of many, I’m actually Ashkafardic (half Moroccan and half Eastern European). I enjoy being a mutt. We live longer and look better!

Do you ever see yourself living in Israel?
Yes, I know I will eventually end up there.  I would like to give myself some more time in DC, to gain more political experience and exposure before I decide to make the move. However, every time I go back to Israel for a visit, the more and more I pity my choice of delaying what I see to be an inevitable return to our homeland. Sometimes I find it quite amusing how roots have a power and force of their own design.

Rumor has it, you’ve been up to some interesting work in Texas?
I was just offered a position to serve as a State Advisor on the Gingrich campaign. I’ll be working with his Texas team as their go-to guy for Jewish outreach in communities throughout the state leading up to its May primary.

Upcoming career aspirations?
For the forceable future, I see myself getting into some form of political/campaign consulting. When I first came to Washington, I worked on the Hill for Senator Pat Roberts. It would be great to end up back there should a good opportunity present itself.

Final words or advice?
“Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.” -Benjamin Franklin

 

Want to get in touch with Aaron?  Email info@gatherthejews.com