From Bill Sutter’s Desk Mar/Apr 2011
In 1950, a mere two years after the birth of the modern State of Israel, a historic conference was convened by then-Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion in Jerusalem’s King David Hotel. It led to the founding of State of Israel Bonds. As a vital participant in Israel’s economic growth, Israel Bonds has generated $31 billion in worldwide economic support for the tiny Jewish state.
According to State of Israel Bonds President and Chief Executive Officer Joshua Matza, “Accomplishments of Israel Bonds would astound the organization’s founders….Decades after its creation, Israel Bonds remains an essential catalyst for economic growth….Israel Bonds will continue to raise funds, connect more individuals with Israel, and promote solidarity—all with the efficiency and dedication that has been the hallmark of the organization for 60 years.”
After careful consideration, The Friends of Israel became an investor in Israel Bonds by including them in our charitable-gift-annuity reserves portfolio. These invested reserves are required by the state of New Jersey in support of regular payments we make to our friends who hold Friends of Israel charitable-gift-annuity contracts. By investing in Israel Bonds, we honor God’s blessing on Israel while maintaining dependable investments.
Proceeds from bond sales have built highways and harbors in Israel and pipelines and power plants. They also have created new jobs and industries; helped fund advancements in medical and scientific research; established many industrial, agricultural, transportation, communications, and hi-tech projects; and converted sea water to fresh water to help make the desert blossom, as prophesied in Isaiah 35:1–2: “And the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice.”
Funds raised by Israel Bonds have also played a vital role in the return of Jewish people to their ancestral homeland. These monies have supported programs to absorb, train, and resettle more than 1 million immigrants from the former Soviet Union, Ethiopia, Argentina, France, and other countries. These efforts remind us of God’s promises in Ezekiel 34:13: “And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land; I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the inhabited places of the country.”
Looking ahead, Israel Bonds is focused on supporting infrastructure developments that will connect cities and towns throughout Israel, create state-of-the-art communications systems, and accelerate technological innovation, thereby providing new opportunities for Israelis in all walks of life.
By investing in State of Israel Bonds, The Friends of Israel joins more than 65 states and municipalities, as well as thousands of banks, insurance companies, corporations, universities, foundations, and endowment funds. These investments are supported by Israel’s perfect record of making every payment of principal and interest on time and in full.
Individual investors, too, have played a major part in the success of Israel Bonds. A wide variety of bonds are available to the general public to help meet an individual’s personal investment objectives. For generating income with semiannual interest payments, three-year to 10-year Jubilee Bonds and two-year to five-year Maccabee Bonds are available in minimum amounts of $25,000 and $5,000 respectively.
For savings, three-year Sabra Bonds are available in $1,000 minimums, with interest paid at maturity. Five-year Mazel Tov Bonds are offered in units as low as $100, plus multiples of $50. They make wonderful gifts—as my wife and I know, having purchased Mazel Tov Bonds in the names of our three grandchildren. Investments in Israel Bonds by individuals do double duty. They are a meaningful means of supporting Israel while meeting personal financial goals.
For more information about investing in Israel Bonds, visit one of the official Web sites: israelbonds.com (United States), israelbonds.ca (Canada), or www.israelukbonds.com (United Kingdom). Or contact customer service directly in New York by telephoning 888–519–4111.
We at The Friends of Israel understand that, because of God’s promise in Genesis 12:3, “I will bless those who bless you,” we can rightly refer to Israel Bonds as “bonds of blessing.” As the Israel Bonds motto says, “Not just a bond. A bond with Israel.”