Looking for best arguments to defend Israel? There’s an app for that


A former Nasa engineer has created the first Israel advocacy app, with the aim of promoting the Jewish State outside its usual circles of support.

Talk Israel aggregates pro-Israel news from dozens of websites in the UK, US and Israel and tracks what users like to read about so it can present them with only the stories they want to see.

It also tells advocates which of the stories they share are the most popular, giving them the tools to take the fight to new audiences.

Dr Amir Give’on, whose app has already attracted a few thousand users, said: “That is the goal of Talk Israel - for us to be able to speak about Israel and reach beyond the base.

“Instead of preaching to the choir and always talking to the same people, we want to show users what type of items and topics go further.”

The engineer, who worked at Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory for six years and is also the brains behind Jewish crowdfunding website Jewcer, said that “the majority of Israel advocates are speaking to each other all the time,” stuck in an agreeable echo-chamber.

“When you post something on Facebook and 100 people click on it, and then the next day you share another thing and 100 people click on it - is it the same 100? There’s no way for us to know, and we’re looking to disentangle that ambiguity.”

For the 41-year-old Israeli, who has lived in the US for the last 20 years and helped to improve space-based telescopes in his former role, this was important work.

“It's standing behind what’s right. The world needs to know what Israel really is and to support it, because it's right.

“To me, it's a very natural thing. I don’t ever stop to ask myself why I am doing it. It's like asking me: ‘Why do you breathe?’”

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