Diplomatic Tabernacles

British Ambassador Matthew Gould decorates Sukkah with Israelis of the organization AKIM, who live with developmental challenges; U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro celebrates Sukkot with his family.

The Jewish ambassadors of the United Kingdom and United States to Israel prepared for the Sukkot holiday with their families this week.

British Ambassador Matthew Gould marked four seasons since his arrival in Israel by decorating a Sukkah at his Ramat Gan residence with the help of a group of Israelis from the organization AKIM, who live with developmental challenges.

British Ambassador Matthew Gould  sukkah sukkot
British Ambassador Matthew Gould decorates a Sukkah at his home with a member of the organization AKIM.Hadar Cohen

Gould, the first British Jew to hold the top diplomat post in Israel, also had the help of his wife Celia and six-month-old daughter Rachel. “This is the first Sukkah we’ve had in the British Ambassador’s residence in Israel,” said Gould. “It is particularly nice for us that we’re doing it with the young men and women of AKIM who’ve come up and made these beautiful decorations.”

‏U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro and his daughter Merav spent Monday afternoon looking for the Four Species, which Jews shake during Sukkot, and sukkah decorations near Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square.

They later decorated the sukkah at their home, together with the ambassador’s wife, Julie, and their youngest daughter, Shira. “It’s a great pleasure to spend hag sukkot in Israel. Our family is decorating our sukkah the way that Israelis and Jews all over the world are decorating their sukkot,” Shapiro said in a video greeting posted on YouTube. After his message in English, Shapiro addressed the Israeli people in Hebrew. ‏

‏U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro, Sukkot
‏U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro and his daughter look for the Four Species, which Jews shake during Sukkot, and sukkah decorations near Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square, Oct. 10, 2011.Moti Stern