When twenty-five-year-old law student Gregory Levey applied for an internship at the Israeli Consulate, he got more than he’d bargained for. The speechwriter for the Israeli delegation to the United Nations quit, and Levey was asked to fill the vacancy. The situation got even stranger when he was transferred to Jerusalem to write speeches for Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
Shut Up, I’m Talking is the startling account of Levey’s journey into the nerve center of Middle Eastern politics. During his three years in the Israeli government, Levey was repeatedly thrust into highly improbable situations.
With sharp insight and great appreciation for the absurd, Levey offers the first-ever look inside Israeli politics from the perspective of a complete outsider, ultimately concluding that the Israeli Government is no place for a nice Jewish boy.
Gregory Levey is the author of Shut Up, I'm Talking: And Other Diplomacy Lessons I Learned in the Israeli Government and has written for Newsweek, The New Republic, New York Post, Salon, and other publications. He served as a speechwriter and delegate for the Israeli government at the United Nations and as Senior Foreign Communications Coordinator for prime ministers Ariel Sharon and Ehud Olmert, and is now on the faculty of Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada.
"A funny, sometimes horrifying look at the inner workings of international government agencies.... [Levey] makes speechwriting seem cooler than even Aaron Sorkin imagined.... Read it for the hilarity and the keen portraiture, but try to pretend these people don't actually make decisions about the fate of the world." -- Kirkus Reviews
"This brilliant and blindingly funny book is like a nonfictional season of The West Wing set in the Knesset. If you ever wanted an insider tale about why the Middle East is such a complicated, heartrending, and yet unbelievably compelling saga then look no further. Gregory Levey has captured the soul of this conflict with charm, grace, and diplomatic wit." -- Matthew Polly, author of American Shaolin