Imagine that five years from now, people in countries all over the world will be captivated and immersed in a historically accurate, action-packed video game that recreates Israel’s War of Independence, that is so life-like that to most it would look like an interactive blockbuster Hollywood movie. Gamers fighting alongside Ariel Sharon to capture Latrun, or in the Harel Brigade under the command of Yitzak Rabin to open the road to Jerusalem, attend intimate briefings with David Ben-Gurion and Moshe Dayan, and relive the glory and hardship of the other battles of the war, by land, air, and sea.
The technology to create such a game already exists along with an enormous global market of gamers who play these types of games several hours a day, and wouldn’t hesitate to purchase and play a game that would teach them more about Israel than they would otherwise likely learn over their entire lives. The only things preventing the production of such a game in Israel is the scarcity of financial resources and an inexperienced video game industry, both of which the Israeli government could influence through policy initiatives.
Video games and other forms of interactive entertainment provide fresh opportunities to strengthen Israel and the Jewish world. Jewish leaders and organizations should familiarize themselves with this new medium and consider how to better utilize it.