I will be writing the rest of this week from Israel where I am to be part of a delegation representing Washington University and the Jewish Federation of St. Louis.
The formal reason for my visit is to help Wash U expand its academic and research partnerships with several Israeli universities. (It’s useful to have a mayor-full-of-useful-information along on these pitches.) And, I was also invited to learn more about Israel and some of the issues that are important to St. Louis’s large Jewish community.
But, I also have a reason of my own to be here. Jerusalem is a city stitched together by its churches, synagogues, and mosques. Muslims, Jews, and Christians — Israelis and Palestinians live side by side by side. Is there a better classroom for a mayor who is trying to build a diverse city?