Existing with Purpose

Existing with Purpose

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    CG Yehuda Yaakov CG Yehuda Yaakov
    Nir Landau
    ​MEVASERET ZION, ISRAEL - What a privilege to write this month's message at the conclusion of such a successful innovation mission to Israel led by Governor Patrick. It offers a golden opportunity to reinforce my remarks at our recent 66th Independence Day reception at the JFK Library, so fitting a venue: Israel does not just exist, it exists with purpose.

    One had to see it to believe it. For those who did not have the opportunity, I will do my best to capsulize the experience. Imagine: over 100 participants, all leaders in their fields, all coming together from Massachusetts to this minuscule country of some 8 million to expand vistas that have a proven track record of adding jobs, revenue and prospects to the Commonwealth and its inhabitants. And they didn't just broaden the potential for business; no, participants were also exposed - some for the very first time - to Israel's quest for peace, striving for social justice, multiculturalism, culinary uniqueness, beauty - and, of course, its zest for life.

    As we sat through the sessions on cyber security, eHealth, life sciences, water technologies and the rest, I was reminded once again of Israel's positive - indeed, hyperactive - contribution to the betterment of peoples' lives the world over, what I like to call a Modern Tikkun Olam. Entrepreneurs can direct their talents, energies and resources to any number of avenues; that they do so expressly in these fields is to me a reflection of where our DNA lies.

    This DNA can also be found, of course, in more traditional forms of Tikkun Olam. New England has seen this before. Indeed, an event in the mission program dedicated to first responders reminded us all of the assistance Israelis provided in the wake of last year's Boston Marathon bombing. Our DNA works in the same way further from home as well; for example, with all eyes - including Israel's - focused on the plight of the kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls, Prime Minister Netanyahu was one of the first world leaders not only to offer concrete assistance in the search but to deliver on that offer in real time.

    It doesn't end there. I've already referred to the humanitarian assistance that the State of Israel and individual Israelis continue to provide to the victims of Syria's civil war. Less noticed were the 1.5 tons of medical supplies, blankets, food and rain gear that we dispatched to Serbia and Bosnia to help alleviate the suffering caused by devastating floods. Israel also offered Turkey assistance after its recent coal mine disaster, and even though this offer was declined our embassy in Ankara showed its solidarity by cancelling its planned Independence Day celebration. And late last year the Israel Defense Forces sent to the Philippines two planes carrying 200 Israeli doctors, nurses and paramedics to help with the tragic aftermath of a super-typhoon there.

    The list goes on and on. Some might ask: Why bother? After all, we have so many challenges at home. The answer is simple: it's in our DNA; Israel at 66 doesn't just exist, it exists with purpose. And this sense of purpose was on proud display for the participants of Governor Patrick's second successful innovation mission to Israel.

    More by the Consul General:

    Israel at 66: A Source of Pride​

    As You Were Saying... Israel's role key to Mideast stability - Published in The Boston Herald, May 4, 2014​

    Like Israelis, Bostonians show resilence amid pain​ - Published in The Boston Globe, April 18, 2014​.