Monday, November 16, 2009

Israeli army - most prolific innovation engine on earth


How does Israel—with fewer people than the state of New Jersey, no natural resources, and hostile nations all around—produce more tech companies listed on the NASDAQ than all of Europe, Japan, South Korea, India, and China combined? How does Israel attract, per person, 30 times as much venture capital as Europe and more than twice the flow to American companies? How does it produce, for its size, the most cutting-edge technology startups in the world?

There are many components to the answer, but one of the most central and surprising is the Israeli military's role in breaking down hierarchies and—serendipitously—becoming a boot camp for new tech entrepreneurs.

While students in other countries are preoccupied with deciding which college to attend, Israeli high-school seniors are readying themselves for military service—three years for men, two for women—and jockeying to be chosen by elite units in the Israeli military, known as the Israel Defense Forces, or IDF.


  1. This is from the recent book 'Israel - Startup Natiom'. Interstibgly that book also mentions that the biggest threat to israel existent is not the Arabs but the ultra orthodox who do not contribute to the society but uses resources.

    Of course, some haredim see it the other way around, that the Lord made the startup companies succesful so they can support the haredim studying torah.

    An observation that is missing from the book is that the IDF is build on one track for officer and enlisted while the American military build on seperated tracks.

  2. Recipients and PublicityNovember 17, 2009 at 4:47 PM

    No one knows what they are saying here. Since when is a news magazine going to decide what makes Israel great?

    Notice how they overlook the very OBVIOUS point that the core of Israel are its JEWS who make it into a great nation. The Jews in all nations and in all ages have always contributed to making their host nations rich and wealthy, and now thatit is when they are within their own land, when half the world's Jews live in Israel, that they are doing many great and wondrous things in all spheres for themselves and for the world. What is the surpise? Why does no one even say this obvious point?

    The fact is that for the last two hundred years or so, all Jews, religious and secular, have worked in different ways to build up the Land of Israel. You can't compare them, but they both live in the same time and place and share a common geography, history and destiny. The more religious Jews there are, the more the economy grows because they have needs. They need clothing, food, housing, meical help, infrastructure and they pay for most of it one way are another. They bring in more charitable giving and investments in the tens of billions each year from abroad than any other group. The religious are busy beavers. It is a lie to say that they only mooch off the state. Every state helps all its citizens. Israel helps its one million Arab citizens and gives them more rights than even religious Jews want.

    The bottom line is missed in this magazine article. It is not the army that does anything unique besides being an army and with that weapons are built and then also sold to make money. That is not the core of the innovation or the inspiration for Israel's success. The army is a fighting machine, it can win and lose battles it is not invulnerable or "godly" or "god-like", but it is JEWS that always triumph with their creativity, ingenuity, intelligence, ability to think and organize and see ahead, the nation that produce the Vilna Gaon and Albert Einstein is now living under one roof in Israel and from that greatness inherent in the JEWISH PEOPLE (not it's "army") comes its success and triumph over all odds. It's not even a kashya.


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