Naftali Bennett, August 2021
Naftali Bennett, August 2021 Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was chosen as one of the "100 most influential people of 2021" by Time Magazine.

The tribute to Bennett on Time's website was written by Mansour Abbas, leader of the United Arab List party.

"In the end, it all comes down to courage," Abbas began.

"After four elections in two years, a bold act was needed to unite a country frayed by political stalemate and brought to a desperate standstill. Something dramatic needed to change, but more importantly, someone courageous needed to make that change. Naftali Bennett threw himself into a political firestorm in order to forge previously unimaginable ties between Israel’s left and right, Arabs and Jews, religious and secular. He formed one of the most diverse governments in Israel’s history.

"'I don’t do things in the dark,' Bennett, who is now Prime Minister, told me in a meeting with him in the Knesset that he agreed to be made public. As the leader of an Arab party, I had become used to cameras being kept outside the room. 'In a time of polarization and hate,' Bennett said, 'the Israeli public needs unity.'

"It wasn’t just the flash of the cameras that lit up the room at that moment, but the hope for a brighter future for us all," Abbas concluded.