On Wednesday, June 18th, Hudson Institute will host the Honorable Naftali Bennett, Israeli Minister of Economy, Minister of Religious Services, Minister for Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs. Hudson Institute Senior Fellow Lee Smith will moderate an on-the-record conversation with Bennett about economic reform, Israel’s new energy economy, Bennett’s “Stability Plan” for the Palestinian territories, and the looming threat posed by Iran as the Obama administration negotiates over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program.
A modern Orthodox Jew who opposes the state-sanctioned rabbinate, and an advocate of strong national defense, Naftali Bennett is one of the rising stars on the Israeli political scene. As a software entrepreneur turned politician, Bennett is a proponent of market-oriented economic reform and Israel’s new hi-tech economy.
Bennett served in the IDF as a company commander in several commando units and continues to serve in the reserves, holding the rank of Major. After his active IDF service, Bennett studied law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and co-founded and served as CEO of Cyota, an anti-fraud software company in New York. In the mid-2000s, Bennett returned to Israel and entered politics. From 2006 to 2008, he served as chief of staff to then opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu. In 2012, Bennett founded the Yisraelim (Israelis) movement to increase dialogue between the religious and nonreligious communities. Upon resigning from the Likud party in the same year, Bennett joined the HaBayit Hayehudi (The Jewish Home) party and was elected chairman. The party won 12 seats in the 2013 legislative elections. Today Bennett serves as Minister of Economy, Minister of Religious Services, Minister for Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs, and is a member of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee in the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
This event has been cancelled.
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