WASHINGTON – Four Israeli representatives have made it to the Foreign Policy Magazine's Top 100 Global Thinkers list for 2012 – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak at 13th place, and Former Mossad chief Meir Dagan and former Shin Bet director Yuval Diskin both at 14th place.
At first place in the prestigious list are Noble Prize winner Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, and reformist Burmese politician Thein Sein.
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Both US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and her spouse former President Bill Clinton were placed third on the list, and reigning US President Barack Obama at seventh, just after 15-year-old Malala Yousafzai, an activist who stood up to the Taliban.
13 on Top Thinkers list. Netanyahu and Barak (Photo: Ariel Hermoni, Defense Ministry)
Foreign Policy commended Netanyahu and Barak for having "wrenched the world's attention toward the apocalyptic potential of a nuclear Iran." According to FP, "The result of this rhetorical offensive has been impressive. The two Israelis not only sparked a political debate at home but also induced Europe to cut off oil imports from Iran and got US President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney into a prolonged argument over which presidential hopeful would be a better ally to the government in Jerusalem."
Karem's Predator drone (Photo: AFP)
As for the contribution of Dagan and Diskin to the international agenda, the magazine wrote that "If the Israeli government doesn't end up launching a war against Iran, it won't be because of the persuasive abilities of US President Barack Obama or the political machinations of Israel's opposition parties.
"More likely," the magazine stressed, "it will be the work of calculating former security officials like onetime intelligence chief Meir Dagan and internal security director Yuval Diskin, who have stepped into the public arena in unprecedented fashion to make a convincing, hard-nosed case that a strike would only make the Iranian threat greater."
Israeli representation on 2012's great minds' list continues with Abraham Karem, a former Israeli Air Force engineer who is the man behind the Predator unmanned drone, used by the CIA; and entrepreneur Shai Reshef, whose online University of the People grants tuition free degrees to people around the world.
According to Foreign Policy, Karem, at 17th place, achieved "something the Pentagon did not then consider possible," and that his Predator drone "has emerged as the defining weapon of the post-9/11 era."
As for Reshef, at 36th place, the magazine praised him for working voluntarily on his project, which was founded in 2009 and currently caters to some 1,500 students in 132 countries.
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