Reuven Rivlin’s Four Tribes Speech

Today, perhaps more than ever, many people feel as if different sectors of Israeli society are moving apart in unprecedented ways.

In 2015, Israel’s 10th president, Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin, gave a prescient speech that became known as the “The Four Tribes Speech.” In it, Rivlin outlined four key sectors or “tribes” that comprise Israeli society: secular Jews, national religious Orthodox Jews, ultra-Orthodox Haredi Jews, and Arabs. Rivlin opined that unity and full integration of all Israel’s sectors into its society and economy is the necessary/best/only path forward for Israel, and he urged people to not let these sectors remain disconnected.

  • Do you personally fit into any of these groups?
  • Some have suggested that there are actually five sectors, with world Jewry comprising the fifth “tribe.” Does adding a fifth group change anything for you in the way that you understand these distinctions?
  • What do you think about the premise that staying distinct is not good for Israel? What are the benefits of these sectors interacting more with each other?


The Hamsa Aleinu exhibition was created by Beit HaNasi—The Office of the President of the State of Israel—and its flagship program “Israeli Hope,” in partnership with Vibe Israel, an organization that specializes in storytelling around Israel. The exhibition showcased a few of the many creative partnerships that exist within Israeli society and the sense of mutual responsibility felt between Israelis and Jewish people around the world. Each photograph tells a real story, one unfolding in Israel every day—mostly far from the media’s spotlight.

These stories, and the many more like them, are the sparks that result from bold, new, and innovative partnerships between and among Israel’s different groups and communities. Taken together, they represent not only the indomitable Israeli spirit, but also the joy, curiosity, vitality, and creativity that can flow from the encounter and cooperation between all of us.

“Israeli Hope” was a program for strengthening and establishing the partnership between the various groups comprising Israeli society and represents the practical application of Rivlin’s call to action in the “The Four Tribes Speech.” The photos in the exhibition are based on special narratives developed by Vibe Israel that showcase the uniqueness of Israeli society. Together, they provide an amazing kaleidoscope of different colors, backgrounds, traditions, and religions. The past, present, and future are fueled by cultural diversity and shared destiny. Israel is full of contrasts and its people, of all backgrounds and identities, are all part of the story!

  • Which photographs intrigue you? Surprise you? Raise questions for you?
  • Which photographs bring to mind a personal story that you can share about Israel?
  • In what ways do any of the photos seem to reflect – or respond to – the current divide in Israeli society over the government’s judicial overhaul plans?
  • Can you think of a project or initiative in your community that brings different parts of society together?

There are many ways that you can use these photographs. For ideas and additional photos with stories, check out our full packet of materials around Hamsa Aleinu.

Curricular Tools

תחנות יסוד קשורות בתחום החינוך לישראל

Related Building Blocks of Israel Education