Dr. Ronen Shoval Founder

Dr. Ronen Shoval holds a PhD in Jewish Political Thought, is a philosopher and is the founder of the “Im Tirtzu” movement. Shoval holds an Undergraduate degree in International Relations and a Master’s degree in Jewish Philosophy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Shoval completed his doctorate in Jewish Political Thought from the Sorbonne University in Paris summa cum laude, under the tutelage of Prof. Shmuel Trigano. Shoval was a research fellow at the Institute for Zionist Strategies, and teaches at various pre-military academies and other academic frameworks. In 2006 he founded the “Im Tirtzu” movement. Shoval led the movement until 2013. In 2010, Shoval’s book “Herzl’s Vision 2.0, a manifest for the rejuvenating Zionism” was published. Shoval published numerous articles in the newspapers “Ha’aretz”, “Ma’ariv” and “Makor Rishon”, and served as a board member of the World Zionist Organization and of the Jewish Agency.

Prof. Elisha Haas

Prof. Elisha Haas

Prof Haas, born in 1943. Professor Emeritus at the Mina and Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Sciences at Bar Ilan University and chairman of the Israel Society for Biophysics. Haas was born and raised on Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu in the Beit Shean Valley. His parents made Aliyah from Germany before World War II and were among the founders of the Kibbutz. During the Six Day War, was a Platoon Commander in the 9th Brigade and participated in the fighting in Judea and Samaria. Haas served in the Nahal Brigade and was commander of the Ma’ale Gilboa settlement, which later became a Kibbutz. During the Yom Kippur War Haas served as a Company Commander and fought in the battles on the Golan Heights. Following his military service he studied biochemistry and biophysics at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Haas’ did his doctorate work at the Weizmann Institute of Science, following which he spent time at Harvard University. In addition, Haas was also a Visiting Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and at Cambridge University in England.  Haas’ fields of research are biophysics and structural biology. His studies deal with the physical structure and processes occurring in proteins while using method combining genetic engineering, protein chemistry and spectroscopic methods. Haas is a member of Professors for a Strong Israel and was Chairman during the years 2009-2011. Elisha Haas currently resides in Jerusalem.

Prof. David Cassuto

David Cassuto was born in 1937, and was a child who was hidden during the Holocaust. At the conclusion of World War II, and the return of his parents (Natan and Hanna) from the concentration camps, David made Aliyah to Israel, which his mother also eventually reached. David grew up in the house of his grandfather, Prof. Moshe David Cassuto, the Biblical scholar. Cassuto studied Architecture at the Technion in Haifa, and was given the title of Architect and City Builder in 1963. Cassuto designed dozens of public buildings, residential buildings and other structures in Israel and around the world. Cassuto served as a board member of the District Planning and Building Commission on behalf of the Association of Engineers in Israel (1983-1993). Cassuto has published dozens of papers on architecture in general and on Jewish architecture and art in particular. Cassuto serves as a director at the Yad Vashem Institute, a director at the Yad Ben Zvi Institute and was the chairman of the Association of Italian Jews in Israel (1973-2008). Cassuto served as Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem from 1988-1993, during which he prepared the “Strategic Plan for Jerusalem 2020” (which dealt with planning aspects: Physical, municipal, demographic, economic and cultural). Cassuto was chairman of the governmental municipal “Moriah” company, and during the years 2004-2008 was the head of the School of Architecture at the Ariel University Center of Samaria. In 2000 Cassuto was appointed to the position of Professor from the Council for Higher Education of Israel. Is a member of the Board of Governors of the “Bezalel” Academy of Arts and Design. Cassuto is President of the “Keren Yaldenu Tikvatenu Centers”, whose purpose is to strengthen and empower disadvantaged youth in 7 different centers. In 2013 Cassuto was presented with the title of “Yakir Yerushalayim”, Worthy Citizen of Jerusalem by the Mayor of Jerusalem.

Yulia Shamalov Berkovich

Born in 1964. Shamalov Berkovich served as a Member of Knesset for the Kadima Party. Shamalov Berkovich made Aliyah from Samarkand in Uzbekistan in 1979 at the age of 15, whereupon she settled with her family at the Absorption Center in Gilo in Jerusalem. Due to paralysis which she was born with in her left arm, she was not recruited to the Israeli Defense Forces, and she volunteered for National Service at a geriatric hospital. In 1984, Shamalov Berkovich completed her studies for a certificate in Journalism and Television, after which she completed a BA in sociology and anthropology in 1988. Shamalov Berkovich is marketing and media consultant and strategic advisor. During the years 1992-2001 she was the managing editor of the “Vesti” Russian language newspaper, which became the leading newspaper for the Russian speaking audience in Israel under her control. During the years 2001-2004 Shamalov Berkovich was amongst the founders of Israel Plus, Israel’s Russian language television channel. Until her election to the Knesset, Shamalov Berkovich served as a board member of “Sports Palaces, ltd.” And a member of the Zionist General Council. She was elected for four straight terms as Chairperson of the Association of Entrepreneurs of Israel. Shamalov Berkovich is a guest lecturer in the field of communications and marketing strategy at numerous institutes for higher education.

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Dr. Shelly Goldberg

Dr. Shelly Goldberg is a researcher and lecturer in the field of Jewish Philosophy.

Goldberg has a PhD from the Faculty of Jewish Philosophy from Bar Ilan University, a Masters degree in Jewish Philosophy from Bar Ilan University and an Undergraduate degree in Sociology and Anthropology from Tel Aviv University.

Goldberg’s doctorate work dealt with the Zaddik’s soul after his ‘Histalkut’ (death) continuity and change in the writings of ‘Nesiey’ (presidents of) Habad.

Dr. Goldberg’s fields of interest include: the eternality of the soul in Jewish thought, philosophy and anthropology; Kabballah in the 20th century and its influence in the postmodern world; development of models for interaction between psychology and Hasidism; Messianism, mysticism and pragmatism in Habad Hasidisms.

Geula Cohen

Journalist and broadcaster for the Fighters for the Freedom of Israel (Lehi) underground movement, author, served as a Member of Knesset for 19 consecutive years, entrepreneur and leader of education and cultural enterprises, 2002 Israel Prize laureate for her lifetime achievements and special contribution to society and the State of Israel.

Due to her persecution by the British authorities, in 1945 Cohen left her parents’ house and went underground. Cohen served numerous roles in the Lehi, but mainly served as the main broadcaster of the underground radio station. The entire broadcast station was packed in a suitcase, and thus she would travel from hideout to hideout, primarily in the Tel Aviv area.

Geula was arrested during a live broadcast in February of 1946, was sentenced to nine years in prison and was interned in a women’s prison in Bethlehem. Cohen attempted to escape prison twice. She was founded during her first attempt, which failed, while her second attempt was successful, and she was able to return to activity in the Lehi ranks.

Cohen married Immanuel Hanegbi, one of the Lehi’s most important Operation Officers, giving birth to their son Tzachi Hanegbi, currently a Member of Knesset and Government Minister.

Geula Cohen was active in the struggle for the emigration of the Jews from the Soviet Union to Israel, and in December, 1969, initiated a public advocacy campaign on this topic in the United States, with two Aliyah activists, Dov Schperling and Yasha Kazakov, with the funding and assistance of an American Jew, Bernie Deutsch.

The journey ended with a hunger strike outside the UN building, which raised an international furor. In 1980, Cohen initiated the legislating of the Jerusalem Law. Cohen founded the Immigration and Absorption Committee and was among the founders of the Tehiya movement. In 1987 Cohen founded the Member of Knesset lobby for Jonathan Pollard, served as the Deputy Science Minister and in September 1990, when word of the plight and suffering of the Ethiopian Jews in the camps in Addis Ababa got out, she visited there, met with ministers and promoted the operation to bring the Jews of Ethiopia to Israel – Operation Solomon.

Today Geula Cohen works at “Geulat Giborim”, “Redemption of Heroes” – increasing awareness to the work of Jewish leaders, among them Dona Gracia Mendes Nasi. Cohen founded the Uri Zvi Greenberg Heritage Society, and still serves as chairwoman.

“If I were asked to formulate the motto of my life, I would write: There is no greater freedom than when a person freely chooses the necessity of his purpose”.

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Attorney Dafna Netanyahu

Attorney, philosopher and editor of the internet magazine “Marah” (“Mirror”)

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Dr. Yehuda David

Born in Algiers in 1953, immigrated with his family to France at the age of 8.

David studied medicine in France and in 1976, at the age of 23, moved to Israel, performing part of his internship at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center and at Tel Hashomer Hospital.

David officialy made Aliyah in 1980. In 1985, at the age of 32, was recruited into the Israeli Defense Forces and served as a medical officer, with the rank of Major.

During the Second Lebanon War, David volunteered to serve in the IDF Reserves and fought with the Nahal Brigade’s 932nd Battalion.

For his actions during the war, he was awarded a citation from the Head of Central Command. In 2007 David lit a torch during the Independence Day ceremony, as the IDF representative.

That same year, David finished his studies at Tel Aviv University, earning his M.A. in Political Sciences.

David serves as an orthopedic surgery specialist for insurance companies, Maccabi and Leumit Healthcare Services, and as a surgeon at Assuta medical centers. Is a member of the Israeli Orthopedic Association, and a member of the Israeli Society for the Surgery of the Hand. David Is a member of the EU Orthopaedic Society, and a member of AAHS, the American Association for Hand Surgery.

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Prof. Yisrael Aumann

Prof. Yisrael Aumann was born on 13 Sivan, 5690, June 8th, 1930.

Aumann is an Israeli mathematician, 2005 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences Laureate. Professor Emeritus at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His main field of study is game theory.

Aumann was born in Frankfurt, Germany. His family moved to the United States in 1938, approximately three months before Kristallnacht.

Aumann studied at a Yeshiva high school in Manhattan, following which he earned his Bachelor’s degree at City College in New York, and earning his M.Sc. and Ph.D at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

In 1955 Aumann moved to Princeton University, where he learned of game theory, which was a new field of study at the time. In 1956 Aumann made Aliyah and settled in Jerusalem.

Aumann married Esther Schlesinger, daughter of Dr. Avraham Schlesinger, head of the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, in 1955, and they had five children.

Their eldest son, Shlomo Aumann, was killed in action serving with the Israel Defense Forces in Operation Peace for Galilee. Esther Aumann died in 1998. In 2005, Aumann married Batya Cohn, Esther’s older sister.

Until his retirement, Aumann was a member of faculty at the Einstein Institute of Mathematics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Aumann is a faculty member at the Center for the Study of Rationality in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and deals in interdisciplinary research in game theory and its applications.

Daniel Pipes

Daniel Pipes is a historian and former executive in the American State and Defense Departments.

Daniel Pipes has taught at the University of Chicago, Harvard University, the Naval War College and Pepperdine University. He is the author of 13 books on topics which include the Middle East, Islam and a wide range of other topics. Mr. Pipes writes a weekly column in a large number of newspapers and leading internet websites, and his writings have been translated into 37 languages. He is a regular commentator on current affairs on television and radio. In addition, Pipes has won two presidential appointments, has testified before numerous Congressional committees and has worked on five presidential campaigns. For further information on his writings and media appearances, visit his website at www.danielpipes.org

Professor Georges-Elia Sarfati

Georges-Elia Sarfati is a Jewish-French philosopher and linguist.

Sarfati is head of research at the Sorbonne University of Paris, formerly a professor at Tel Aviv University.

Sarfati is the founder of the Popular University of Jerusalem.

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Mendi Safadi

Mendi Safadi was born in Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights.

Safadi is the founder of “Non-Jews for Israel”, researcher and analyst on Islam, terrorism and Israeli Arabs, Syrian expert and liaison between the Syrian opposition and the State of Israel, and is a strategic advisor on building democratic alternatives for regimes in the Middle East.

Safadi is a lecturer at the Centre for Public Diplomacy & Hasbara – for training Habara ambassadors in Israel and around the globe. Founder of “One State in Israel” whose purpose is to fight for the integrity of Israel by means of international law, forcing the international community to stick to the international laws which recognize the state of Israel whose borders are from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River.

Safadi wrote and published numerous articles which reveal the Arab truth behind the mask (Hijab), is a lecturer at Zionist groups and organizations, and is a participant in the struggle against extremist trends in the Arab sector who are trying to sabotage the National Service project, and any project which brings Arabs in Israel closer to the state of Israel as a Jewish and Zionist state, and works in Hasbara in anti-Israeli outposts in the west.

Rabbi Yoel Ben Nun

Rabbi Dr. Yoel Ben Nun (Born May 9th, 1946, 8 Iyar, 5706)

Religious Zionist leader, one of the founders of Yeshivat Har Etzion, driving figure behind the “Bible Revolution” in the national religious Yeshivas.

In his youth, Rabbi Ben Nun studied at Yeshivat “Merkaz Harav”, and is one of the students of Rabbi Zvi Yehuda HaKohen Kook. Was one of the liberators of the Old City of Jerusalem in the 1967 Six Day War, as a part of the Paratroopers 55th Reserves Division.

In 1968, along with Hanan Porat, Ben Nun approached Rabbi Yehuda Amital and together they formed Yeshivat Har Etzion in Alon Shevut. At the age of 23, he taught in the Yeshiva as well. At the same time, Ben Nun was a counselor at the Kfar Etzion Field School and in Ofrah, and taught qualification courses for the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI). Following Rabbi Zvi Yehuda, he and Hanan Porat emphasized the importance of studying in Yeshivas.

The founding meeting took place in 1974 in his home at the time, in Alon Shevut. For many years Ben Nun was a member of the “Gush” board. In 1976 he moved from Alon Shevut to Ofrah.

In 1985, Ben Nun founded the Ulpana in Ofrah, a religious high school for girls, and stood at its head for 10 years. In 1986 he founded, along with the Bible studies staff at the Teacher Training Institute in Har Etzion (today: the Yaakov Herzog College) the religious Bible journal, “Megadim”, where he published articles on issues related to the Bible.

In 1996, Ben Nun founded along with Yaakov Shapira the “Yeud” (“Purpose’) Midrasha, as part of the “Amit” network, to train teachers in National Service to teach Judaism in secular schools. During the years 2000 – 2006, he stood at the head of the “Shiluv” (“Integration”) Yeshiva in the religious kibbutz of Ein Zurim.

In 2008, Ben Nun defended his dissertation, “Double Source of Human Inspiration and Authority in the Philosophy of Rav A. I. H. Kook” at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

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Dr. Shahar Golan

Shahar Golan is a Doctor of Computer Sciences, married and a father of three.

Today Golan serves as a scientist at the research labs of an international technology company. Golan completed his Undergraduate and Graduate degrees with highest honors. His Doctorate was presented to him from the Ben Gurion University of the Negev with an “Excellent” grade. Before his current position, Golan worked at the HP research labs. During his doctoral studies, Golan was a lecturer at Ben Gurion University as well as at the Achva Academic College and Sami Shamoon College of Engineering. Golan’s military service was in the Golani Brigade. Golan’s grandfather was a commander in the Etzel, send by the British into exile in Africa before the founding of Israel. Under the auspices of the “Im Tirtzu” movement, Golan initiated numerous educational projects, including among them a series of empowerment and Zionist identity meetings with Ethiopian youth, making Zionist writings accessible to the public by recording electronic books, and lecturing to students.

Today Shachar serves as a member on the “Im Tirtzu” Advisory Board and as the head of the “Research in Motion” branch.

Dr. Eldad Kolnesher

Dr. Eldad Kolnesher is an expert in organizational leadership, performance improvement and company enhancement.

Kolnesher has an Undergraduate degree in Electric Engineering from Tel Aviv University, and a Graduate degree and a Doctorate in Management from the Faculty of Management at Tel Aviv University, and has accrued much experience in teaching and counseling. Dr. Kolnesher is a Colonel in the IDF Reserves, and has commanded an elite technological unit, whose members have founded dozens of start-up companies, and has won the Israeli Security Prize.

Professor Reuven Orda

Professor Reuven Orda is a Professor Emeritus of Surgery at the Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University.

Professor Orda is a Fellow and former Governor of the American College of Surgeons, USA; Member of the National Academy of Surgery, France and Honorary Professor of the Beijing Hospital, China.

Dr. Gustavo Daniel Perednik

Dr. Perednik has written 15 books on Judaism and Modernity, with an emphasis on the phenomenon of Judeophobia in its various forms, some of which have been translated and have went on to win international prizes. This past year, his book on Avshalom Feinberg was published, and became a best seller in Spanish.

Dr. Perednik was head of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s four-year, preparatory, and freshman programs. Perednik lectured in several languages, and was also Director of the Institute for Jewish Leaders from Abroad. Perednik has appeared as a guest lecturer in approximately 100 cities in 50 countries.

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Father Gabriel Nadaf

Father Gabriel Nadaf, a priest of the Greek Orthodox Church in Nazareth. Nadaf is the spiritual leader of the Forum recruiting Arabic-speaking Christians in the Israel Defense Forces as well as the Christian Empowerment Council.

Previously, Nadaf served as a spokesman for the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, a judge in the Nazareth community’s religious courts, and coordinator of religious and spiritual studies at the Christian High School in Ramle.

Father Nadaf holds a degree in Theology and Psychology.

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Zeev Shveidel

Zeev Shveidel has a Master’s Degree in Applied Criminology from Bar Ilan University.

Publications:

(Br)Others in our Midst: On the Place of Religious Homosexuals in religious Society, Akdamot 17, 2006: 81-110.

Publication of reviews, criticisms and publicist notes on a wide range of printed and virtual platforms (Newspapers: Makor Rishon, Ha’aretz; Magazines: Deot, Davka, Odyssey; Websites: Srugim, Ynet and more).

Personal website: zeeviksh.wordpress.com

Attorney Benjamin Barak

Attorney Benjamin Barak holds a double degree in law and Business Administration from the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya.

Currently, Barak is studying for an M.BA. at Tel Aviv University, worked as an attorney in an office specializing in mergers and acquisitions, and today is active in the Risk Capital industry connecting Israeli start-ups to Asia.

Barak was born and raised in Tel Aviv, and still currently resides there.

Barak founded the Im Tirtzu chapter in the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, and would then initiate the first political even at this institute run completely by the students.

Barak believes that by using Hasbara, diplomacy, the principles of morality and love of Israel based on the history of the Jewish people, we can create in Israel an equal, democratic, moral, tolerant and educational society.

And this is done by the Im Tirtzu movement.

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Dr. Harel Arnon

Dr. Harel Arnon is head of a private law firm in Jerusalem. Dr. Harel Arnon was admmitted to the Israel Bar Association in 2001 after receiving his LL.B. and M.A. (Phil.) (magna cum laude) from Bar-Ilan University. He clerked for Chief Justice Aharon Barak of the Supreme Court of Israel (2000-2001 Term). Dr. Arnon completed his doctoral studies at Harvard Law School where he was a Fulbright Scholar.

Dr. Arnon’s authored the book, “A Theory of Direct Legislation”, dealing with initiatives in the United States, which was published in 2008.  His second book, “Land Law and International Law in Judea and Samaria” (edited along with Dr. Chagai Vinitzky) was published in Israel in 2013.

Dr. Arnon worked for five years as an attorney at a firm in New York, and today is a law lecturer at a number of academic institutions in Israel.

Prof. Eliav Shochetman

Prof. Eliav Shochetman was born in Haifa. He studied at “Netiv Meir” Yeshiva in Jerusalem and later at “Mercaz HaRav” Yeshiva. Shochetman’s military service in the IDF was combined with his Yeshiva studies.

During the Six Day War, Shochetman fought in the battle for Jerusalem as part of an Engineering unit, and in the Yom Kippur War, fought primarily on the southern front.

Shocetman studied law at the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, later clerking in the Israeli Supreme Court (for Justice Dr. Isaac Kister). During his academic studies, Shochetman taught Talmud at schools in Jerusalem, and counseled youth groups who came to Israel from overseas to study under the auspices of the Institute for Jewish Leaders from Abroad, and under the auspices of World Bnei Akiva seminars. After being accepted to the Israeli bar, Shochetman continued his higher education in Law. His final assignment before certification as a lawyer, was on the topic of “Education Laws in Hebrew Law. Immediately upon graduation from the Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Shochetman continued his studies for the LL.M. degree. He completed his doctorate on the topic of “Illegal Act in Jewish Law” in 1975. This was later written as a book, published in 1981, titled “Illegal Act in Jewish Law, Ma’ase haba Beavera – Consequences of Illegality in Jewish Law”. Upon Professor Alon’s appointment to the Israeli Supreme Court, 1977, Shochetman began teaching his course: “Introduction to Jewish Law”, alongside other elective courses and seminars on various issues of Jewish law. While working at the Hebrew University, he taught at various academic institutions. In 1988 and again in 1995, Shochetman and was a visiting scholar at the Center for Jewish Studies at Harvard University.

In 1989 was a partner in the founding of “Youth for Jewish Law”, which holds educational activities in higher grades of high schools across Israel, as part of the framework of a unique study program by the Ministry of Education. Since its founding, Shochetman has served as Chairman of the Educational Committee. The organization continues its activity while constantly expanding, and has exposed thousands of teens to the rich world of Jewish law. In 1990, Shochetman participated in preparing the first curriculum for the Institution for Training Women as Advocates in Rabbinical Courts, and taught in that program for seven years, primarily Divorce law as well as regulations of advocating before Rabbinical Courts. This new framework brought a real revolution with regards to representation by women in Rabbinical Courts in Israel. Among the years, Shochetman has been a member of several committees, including twice being a member of the committee for procedural regulations in the Rabbinical Courts. In addition, Shochetman has lectured at numerous national and international conventions and congresses. Today his academic activities following his retirement are based mainly at the “Sha’arai Mishpat” law school in Hod Hasharon, where he served as Dean for three years, and still continues to play a central role. Alongside his academic activities, Shochetman continues to spread Jewish law, orally and in writing.

Recently, his fundamental and comprehensive book, “Procedure in The Rabbinical Court” was published, comprising a guide to the work of the Rabbinical Courts in Israel and the procedures practiced in them.

Shochetman is the 2011 Emet Prize Laureate in the field of Jewish Law.

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