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Israel at 75: The Views From Latin America

Date & Time

Jun. 23, 2023
10:00am – 11:00am ET


6th Floor Flom Auditorium, Woodrow Wilson Center
and Online


As Israel celebrates 75 years of statehood, it is a moment to mark how Israel’s influence and reach extends well beyond its immediate neighborhood. Nowhere is that more true than in the Americas.

The Western Hemisphere and Israel have a long-standing relationship. In 1947, Uruguay and Guatemala were among the first countries to vote for statehood for Israel. Uruguay was the first South American country to formally recognize Israel, while Guatemala was among one of the first countries to open an embassy in Jerusalem after the United States.

Israel has a longstanding and historic friendship with the Western Hemisphere, many Jewish communities and a vast array of economic and commercial agreements and technology cooperation. Trade between Israel and the Western Hemisphere was approximately $6 billion in 2022 with Brazil being its largest trading partner.  

The relationship between the region and Israel is not without its challenges. As we remember and commemorate the terrorist attacks in Argentina almost 30 years ago against the Jewish Center and the Israeli Embassy orchestrated by Hezbollah and Iran, it is increasingly troubling that Iran’s dictator held a Latin America tour recently and visited Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba. 



Sara Cohen headshot

Sara Cohen

Deputy Head of Mission (Foreign Policy & National Security), Embassy of Canada to the United States
Headshot of Amb. Peled

Amb. Jonathan Peled

Deputy Director General of the Latin America & Caribbean Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel
Headshot of Amb. Quiñónez

Amb. Alfonso Quiñónez

Ambassador of Guatemala to the US

Hosted By

Latin America Program

The Wilson Center’s prestigious Latin America Program provides non-partisan expertise to a broad community of decision makers in the United States and Latin America on critical policy issues facing the Hemisphere. The Program provides insightful and actionable research for policymakers, private sector leaders, journalists, and public intellectuals in the United States and Latin America. To bridge the gap between scholarship and policy action, it fosters new inquiry, sponsors high-level public and private meetings among multiple stakeholders, and explores policy options to improve outcomes for citizens throughout the Americas. Drawing on the Wilson Center’s strength as the nation’s key non-partisan policy forum, the Program serves as a trusted source of analysis and a vital point of contact between the worlds of scholarship and action.  Read more

Middle East Program

The Wilson Center’s Middle East Program serves as a crucial resource for the policymaking community and beyond, providing analyses and research that helps inform US foreign policymaking, stimulates public debate, and expands knowledge about issues in the wider Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.  Read more

Mexico Institute

The Mexico Institute seeks to improve understanding, communication, and cooperation between Mexico and the United States by promoting original research, encouraging public discussion, and proposing policy options for enhancing the bilateral relationship. A binational Advisory Board, chaired by Luis Téllez and Earl Anthony Wayne, oversees the work of the Mexico Institute.   Read more

Canada Institute

The mission of the Wilson Center's Canada Institute is to raise the level of knowledge of Canada in the United States, particularly within the Washington, DC policy community.  Research projects, initiatives, podcasts, and publications cover contemporary Canada, US-Canadian relations, North American political economy, and Canada's global role as it intersects with US national interests.  Read more

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