Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu officially offers the job of Israel’s consul-general in New York City to May Golan.
Golan, a Likud minister who rose to prominence campaigning against African migrants, refugees and asylum seekers in south Tel Aviv, had been promised a job as the newly created minister for the status of women. A Likud spokesperson denies that the change is motivated by Netanyahu’s desire to break apart a restive camp within Likud led by Justice Minister Yariv Levin, insisting it was “because of her excellent hasbara abilities in English.”
Her appointment, if accepted, is sure to raise an outcry among liberal Jews in the US. In 2013, Golan ran on the list of the Otzma L’Yisrael party, an Otzma Yehudit precursor that failed to make it into the Knesset. She more recently joined the Likud party, serving briefly in the Knesset in 2019 before re-entering parliament in 2020.
The appointment might upset some on the right as well. Israeli reporter Uri Misgav points out that Golan avoided military and national service by declaring that she was religious, but stated in a 2012 interview that “I am not religious.”
A Foreign Ministry official tells The Times of Israel that the appointment has yet to reach its office.
The post, usually filled by a political appointee, is particularly significant in that New York and the surrounding region is home to the largest Jewish community in the world outside of Israel.