Before he is inaugurated, the president-elect of Argentina, Javier Milei, will reportedly leave his native country on Friday and travel to New York to visit the grave of one of the most influential Jews of the 20th century, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson of Chabad.
Milei, who has pledged to relocate the Argentine embassy to Jerusalem and plans to visit Israel before his December 10 inauguration, visited Schneerson’s grave in July, where he visited the tomb of the Lubavitch rabbi and requested for a blessing before the election that took place earlier this week. Schneerson, the leader of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement,was a tireless pioneer for Jewish outreach; there are currently over 1400 Chabad-Lubavitch institutions in thirty-five countries on six continents.
“The truth is that I did not get to know the Rebbe personally, but just in the last year I had the privilege of visiting the Rebbe’s grave twice,” Milei, who amazed the world by winning the presidential election in a landslide, stated. “There I asked for his holy blessing to be elected president of Argentina and this blessing became a reality this week.”
Milei, who has pledged that Argentina’s two key allies will be the United States and Israel, gave his first foreign press interview to the Hasidic newspaper, “Kfar Chabad.” He said, “From what I’ve learned about the history of the Jewish people, their survival against all odds, and the divine protection they’ve received, I’m certain they will continue to prevail. My message is to keep faith in God, stay strong and united. Eventually, the world will realize the enduring truth — the nation of Israel lives on!”
“We need to quit the hypocrisy,” he continued. “I plan to urge other South American and global leaders to intensify efforts to bring hostages home, and to recognize Israel’s right to protect its citizens by any means necessary. And I’ll do it without hesitation or reservation.”
Regarding the relocation of the Argentinian Embassy, he declared, “I intend to keep my word. Jerusalem is Israel’s capital and moving our embassy there will symbolize this recognition. I am hopeful that many other countries will follow suit.”
“I am recognized as a friend of Israel,” he has stated. “I plan to align with the U.S. and Israel, and intend to move our embassy to Jerusalem. If I win, my first trip will be to Israel.”
“A few years back, a friend of mine from the Jewish community, Mr. Julio Goldstein, who shares my political views, set up a meeting for me with his rabbi,” Milei recalled. “He introduced me to his rabbi but didn’t join the meeting himself. In this lengthy meeting, I started learning about the history of the Jewish people, about the Torah given to them in the Sinai desert, about ideas of Kabbalah, the unseen, and a lot more. I left that meeting feeling inspired and started studying the Torah regularly since then. I fondly remember how Julio Goldstein and I would have debates on specific Torah topics and compete over who knew more.”