“Of all the talents given to men, none is more valuable than the gift of oratory,” wrote Winston Churchill. “He who enjoys it has a power more lasting than that of a great king.”
Churchill, considered one of the greatest English orators of all time, wrote these words when he was just 22 years old, long before he made speeches as Prime Minister that contributed significantly to Britain’s victory over Hitler in World War II.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who drew much inspiration from Churchill during his long career – critics say he often made himself the modern-day Israeli incarnation of the wartime British leader – is also considered a great orator in English and Hebrew.
He understands the power of a well-crafted speech, and like Churchill, often devotes himself to writing meticulous speeches, even making handwritten annotations until the last minute. Netanyahu not only understands the importance of using clear language with strong images, but also the power of dramatic pauses and rhythm in his speech.
For political leaders, there are no more important times to marshal their rhetorical prowess than during periods of war. That’s when words have the power to strengthen resolve, unite a nation, and inspire troops.
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