Jewish Press of Tampa

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Celebrities sign letter denouncing cultural boycott of Israel

More than 200 celebrities, including actors Mila Kunis, Billy Porter, Neil Patrick Harris and Helen Mirren, signed an open letter opposing efforts to boycott an LGBTQ film festival in Tel Aviv.

The letter published Oct. 27 is a response to calls from activists with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement to boycott the Tel Aviv International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, also called TLVFest, an annual film festival showcasing LGBTQ films.

The letter was organized by Creative Community for Peace, an organization of entertainment industry professionals that works to counter cultural boycotts against Israel. Other signees include former NSYNC singer Lance Bass, actor Jeremy Piven, KISS frontman Gene Simmons and actress Emmanuelle Chriqui.

After holdup, Senate confirms Tom Nides as ambassador to Israel

WASHINGTON–-The U.S. Senate confirmed Tom Nides, a businessman and a former deputy secretary of state, to be U.S. ambassador to Israel on Wednesday night, Nov. 3, after Sen. Josh Hawley briefly held up the appointment. It was never clear what objection Hawley, a Republican of Missouri, had to Nides, but he said he represented a number of Republicans in advancing the hold on Nides and seven other nominees.

Nides, a banker, was the deputy secretary of state for management and resources from 2011 to 2013 and had good relations with Israeli diplomats. He was involved in the Obama administration’s loan extension to Israel worth billions of dollars, according to The Times of Israel.

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