Reminding the world of an Israel beyond the conflict

Dan Senor, co-author with Jerusalem author and columnist Saul Singer of the top-selling book Start-Up Nation recently spoke at two fundraising events for ISRAEL21c. At a breakfast meeting hosted by ISRAEL21c co-founder Zvi Alon and his wife Ricki in Palo …

Reminding the world of an Israel beyond the conflict

Dan Senor, co-author with Jerusalem author and columnist Saul Singer of the top-selling book Start-Up Nation recently spoke at two fundraising events for ISRAEL21c.

At a breakfast meeting hosted by ISRAEL21c co-founder Zvi Alon and his wife Ricki in Palo Alto, Senor praised the non-profit website that went live in 2001 as “the only organization on the planet today working day in and day out… to remind the world that there’s a narrative about Israel beyond the conflict.”

He told the 20 people present that one of the things that prompted the duo to write the book was a desire to “remind the world about the jaw-dropping contribution that Israel makes,” which is also the website’s very reason for being.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNHp6HFqQ64

Start-Up Nation,which was sold out before its November 4, 2009 release date, takes a look at Israel’s trillion dollar high-tech industry and the nation’s improbable success – against all odds.

At the breakfast and later at a cocktail reception for 35 people hosted by Richard and Barbara Rosenberg in San Francisco and organized by ISRAEL21c President Amy Friedkin and board member Susan Libitzky, Senor talked to the website’s supporters about what he sees as the two greatest threats to Israel: The military threat and a systematic campaign to delegitimize the country as a “post-colonial experiment,” and mentioned that the efforts of ISRAEL21c serve to counteract that de-legitimization.

At the reception, it was noted that the same qualities of innovation and adaptability analyzed in Start-Up Nation are the ones that made the Israeli relief efforts in Haiti so successful. Israeli teams working there were widely praised for their ability to know when not to “go by the book.”

Senor thanked all those who support ISRAEL21c, and encouraged others to do so as well, saying that he and Singer had found it a valuable resource when writing their book. He expressed his hope that more media and public policy people will avail themselves of the material provided by ISRAEL21c.

Based in the US, Senor is an author and senior fellow for Middle East studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. He was a foreign policy adviser to the Bush Administration and one of the longest-serving civilians in Iraq who was awarded a prize by the Pentagon for his service.