Yet, despite the challenges facing Israel, Shimon Peres was the perpetual optimist. A Nobel Peace Prize recipient, his service as President of Israel seemed a perfect capstone to a remarkable career of public service. He only retired from office in 2014, a spry 91-year-old, \after seven years as Israel’s President.
Shimon Peres represented the best that Israel has to offer the world. He was unapologetic about the need for his nation to defend itself, and unafraid to confront attempt to demonize, undercut or undermine the Jewish state.
He also refused to shy away from Israel’s most vexing challenges and even in its darkest days he always believed that brighter times were just around the corner. Today, the Palestinian refusal to accept Israel’s legitimacy and reach an end to the conflict has made the possibility of a resolution unlikely to be achieved in the foreseeable future. However, the lifelong dream of Shimon Peres to have Israel living at peace with the greater Arab world seems more possible than perhaps at ay time in history.
Israel today would not be where it is without the relentless work and the selfless dedication of Shimon Peres. I am a better man for having known him, and the entire world is a better place because of his contributions.
He was a man of humility, an intellectual and a dreamer. He was a humanitarian, a gentleman and a kind soul; a believer in the infinite possibilities of Israel. He was a man of wisdom, and a man of peace.