No Room for Small Dreams: Courage, Imagination, and the Making of Modern Israel

October 31, 2020
No Room for Small Dreams: Courage, Imagination, and the Making of Modern Israel

In 1934, eleven-year-old Shimon Peres emigrated to the land ofIsrael from his native Poland, leaving behind an extended familywho would later be murdered in the Holocaust. Few back then wouldhave predicted that this young man would eventually become one ofthe towering figures of the twentieth century. Peres would indeedgo on to serve the new nation as prime minister, president, foreignminister, and the head of several other ministries. He was centralto the establishment of the Israeli Defense Forces and the defenseindustry that would provide the young nation with a robustdeterrent power. He was crucial to launching Israel's nuclearenergy program and to the creation of its high-tech "Start UpNation" revolution. His refusal to surrender to conventional wisdomand political conventions helped save the Israeli economy andprompted some of the most daring military operations in history,among them the legendary Operation Entebbe. And yet, as importantas his role in creating and deploying Israel's armed forces was,his stunning transition from hawk to dove–with its accompanyingunwavering commitment to peace–made him one of the globe's mostrecognized, honored, and admired statesmen.In this, his final work, finished only weeks before his passing,Peres offers a long-awaited examination of the crucial turningpoints in Israeli history through the prism of having been adecision maker and eyewitness. Told with the frankness of someoneaware this would likely be his final statement, No Room for SmallDreams spans decades and events, but as much as it is about whathappened, it is about why it happened. Examining pivotal moments inIsrael's rise, Peres explores what makes for a great leader, how tomake hard choices in a climate of uncertainty and distress, thechallenges of balancing principles with policies, and theliberating nature of imagination and unpredicted innovation. Indoing so, he not only charts a better path forward for his belovedcountry but provides deep and universal wisdom for youngergenerations who seek to lead–be it in politics, business, or thebroader service of making our planet a safer, more peaceful, andjust place.