Until a relatively late age, I believed wholeheartedly that every person dreams and that every human being has some secret way leading them to fulfill their dream. I thought that humanity had always advanced according to the standard outline of ambitions, hoping for a peaceful and relaxed life, decency and basic justice between people and between nations.
I saw the wars, the bloodshed, the killing in the battlefield and outside the battlefield – as simple failures created by disgruntled and desperate leaders who lost their way on the twisting path and forgot their dream.
I listened to wise people like Prof. Yeshayahu Leibowitz, who said that a messiah arriving was a false messiah, defiantly alluding not just to those pinning all their hopes on messiah claimants who keep changing according to the time of the day, but to a person's ability to dream: Because a person who doesn’t yearn for the arrival of the messiah has no hope to lean on.
The State of Israel in its 65th year is a state losing its dream, increasingly giving up on the hope that something good is yet to happen. It is a state which has stopped believing in the arrival of a messiah, and has stopped believing that it deserves a better life.
President Shimon Peres, a genius constructor of dreams, is the most courageous and important president we've ever had: He is a person who understands the importance of dreams, and refuses consistently to let go of his attempts to remind us that the dove has not died, and that the olive branch has yet to wither.
There is no thinner line between fantasy and vision, and there is no greater distance between a hallucinating leader and a leader with a vision: Peres, the smartest and most experienced person in Jerusalem – a capital which has known prophets and statesmen of every sort – engages in the holy service of restoring the vision of peace which has almost completely vanished in recent years.
Peres knows very well that his duty as a leader is to tie the dream to the wedges of reality, or else it will fly away and disappear again. His many years as a statesman have taught him the most important thing: Real independence is one which allows us not just to do, but also to dream. He knows very well that if one day things will be better here, it will be only thanks to the hope, not thanks to the destruction.