Benjamin Netanyahu’s son to address AIPAC youth

Yair Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister’s eldest son, will speak at the AIPAC Policy Conference, paying his own travel expenses.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

Yair Netanyahu will address a youth gathering at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Annual Policy Conference, which is meeting from Sunday through Tuesday.

The prime minister’s eldest son will be footing the bill as he is going as a private citizen.

“I am speaking to AIPAC youth,” Yair tweeted before he left with his father Saturday night. “I’m paying my own flight expenses, so the State only gains (since the flight would cost the same amount with me or without me).”

The 27-year-old, who has been a fierce supporter of his father in the current election campaign, couldn’t resist adding a dig in his online post against those who opposed his father in the past.

“On the other hand, former Prime Minister [Ariel] Sharon’s sons joined him on every trip. And they had no official job. And they certainly didn’t pay out of pocket.”

The junior Netanyahu will almost certainly have quite an audience. More than 3,600 students from hundreds of college campuses across the United States are expected to join some 14,000 pro-Israeli American adults at the Washington, D.C. conference. They include almost 300 student government presidents, representing educational institutions from all 50 states.

AIPAC runs training programs throughout the year to teach even high schoolers how to strengthen the U.S.-Israel relationship through political involvement.

The lobby organization constantly seeks bi-partisan support for Israel, and its slate of over three dozen political speakers – led by Vice President Michael Pence – is almost equally divided between senators and congresspeople from both sides of the political aisle.

The list of Israeli dignitaries who will address the conference runs only through the centrist Left-Right gamut of political opinion in the Jewish state. Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu will be a keynote speaker, as will Blue and White party head Benny Gantz.

Two MKs of the Labor party and several from the Likud will also speak, including Israel’s ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon, and its ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer.