On Brandeis University

Learning on the Left: Political Profiles of Brandeis University Stephen J. Whitfield Published by Brandeis University Press 2020, pp. 582, price $40.00 This book celebrates the many well-known alumni of Brandeis University, situated just outside Boston. The political thinker Michael Walzer, the New York Times columnist Tom Friedman, the black Communist activist Angela Davis, the … Read more

President Trump’s Jewish Problem

IN MARCH 2019, US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, told the Christian Broadcasting Network he believed that God was acting through President Trump to protect the Jews of Israel. While Queen Esther had saved the Jewish people from certain Persian annihilation during Purim, today, Pompeo argued, President Trump was saving the Jews from the wrath of … Read more

The UAE and Israel: A Personal Reflection

Last Monday the UAE Ambassador and its Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Lana Nusseibeh, was rapturously greeted by the American Jewish Committee in New York. It was a celebration of the decision of Israel and the United Arab Emirates to proceed towards a normalisation of diplomatic relations. While it was clearly different from the … Read more

Turkish Jews and the Massacre of the Armenians

SULTANIC SAVIORS AND TOLERANT TURKS by Marc David Baer Writing Ottoman Jewish history, denying the Armenian genocide338pp. Indiana University Press. $95 (paperback, $45). Until quite recently, whenever Turkey was criticized for its approach to minorities – Greeks, Kurds and Armenians – they were known to deflect the argument by pointing to 500 years of tolerance … Read more

East End Jews and Left Wing Theatre

For British Jews of a certain age, Alfie Bass, David Kossoff, Warren Mitchell and Lionel Bart were household names in the world of popular music and theater. They were also children of London’s Jewish East End who aspired to make it in the wider world, felt very Jewish, but at the same time were perplexed by … Read more

Israel, China and the Uighurs

“Israel can be a partner, a junior partner, but a perfect partner for China in the development of a variety of technologies that change the way we live, how long we live, how healthy we live − in every area.”  So spoke Benjamin Netanyahu during a visit to China in March 2017. He then went … Read more

Hitler’s Invasion of Britain 1940

Eighty years ago on 16 July 1940, Hitler issued Führer Directive No.16 which instructed his forces to prepare for an invasion of the United Kingdom. The Nazis had conquered France and on a clear day could see the white cliffs of Dover — they readied themselves to launch Operation Sealion. A few weeks before, David … Read more

Welcome to London, Madame Ambassador

“IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY of an Israeli ambassador to maintain intimate links with his fellow Jews, in whatever country he serves. If you have a Jewish heart and soul, how can you not want to be an integral part of a Jewish community when you are representing the Jewish state?” So spoke Yehuda Avner, a much-respected … Read more

Jabotinsky’s Russian Years

Vladimir Jabotinsky’s Russian Years 1900-1925 by Brian J. Horowitz, published by Indiana University Press 2020, pp.271 The surprising interest in Vladimir Jabotinsky, the so-called ‘Father of the Israeli Right’ during the last twenty years is due less to his well-known Zionism, but more to the mystery of his inner beliefs and outward contradictions. For some … Read more