Chief Anne Richardson of the Rappahannock Tribe in Virginia and Kathy Cummings-Dickinson, head of the Lumbee tribes in North Carolina, donned traditional tribal clothing for their recent meeting with Israeli Energy and Water Minister Dr. Uzi Landau.
"We are here to deliver a message to residents of Israel: Stand firm and united against the threats and pressure," said the two female chiefs. "We want to encourage Israel and the newly elected Knesset not to give in to those who try to pressure them to give up parts of the homeland. Surrender to this pressure is not a recipe for peace, but rather war. We stand beside you."
Chief Richardson also quoted from the Book of Ruth: "We'll go wherever you go, your people will be our people and your God will be our God."
This was the second meeting between Landau and Chief Richardson, who is the first female leader of her tribe since 1705. During Sukkot 2009, Richardson visited Israel and presented Landau with a declaration of loyalty to the tribes of Israel.
Cummings-Dickinson presented Landau with a likeness of a known tribal icon cut from the trunk of an ancient tree, stating, "This ancient tree has strong and deep roots, like my tribe to our land, and as with your people to the land of Israel."
The Native American delegations told their Israeli host that they intend to bring other tribes who wish to express support for Israel.
Landau thanked his guests and said: "I am aware of your strong stance and your actions on behalf of Israel, as well as on behalf of the Native American tribes in the US. ...[some] are not aware that we are all in the same boat. There is a large shadow in the form of radical Islam overshadowing all Western culture. Israel stands on the front line, but all lovers of democracy and freedom must face this together."
In recent decades there have been efforts by Islamic groups to bring Native American tribes in line with Muslim animosity for the US and Israel.