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History & Politics

On the Road Again On the Road Again
Wednesday, November 16, 2011 by Diana Muir Appelbaum | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The chronically tense relations between the Israeli government and Bedouins in the Negev—where unrecognized villages are built, razed, and built again—are certain to grow even more tense with the Israeli Cabinet's recent approval of a plan that will recognize about half these villages but demolish the other half.
Finally, a Palestinian “Peace Now”? Finally, a Palestinian “Peace Now”?
Monday, November 14, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

What if a group of youthful Palestinian activists, fed up with Hamas and Fatah for leading the Palestinian Arabs over and over down bloody, self-defeating dead ends, were to emerge as a new political and social force—something like a Palestinian "Peace Now"?
Ladies in Waiting Ladies in Waiting
Wednesday, November 2, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The winter session of the Knesset began this week and, in what is surely a sign of the times, two of its most closely watched stories involve female political leaders.  One is a rising star; the other is struggling to stay alive.
Career Corps Career Corps
Tuesday, October 4, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The United States has its military academies at West Point and Annapolis. The British put their officers through Sandhurst. But how will the Israeli Defense Forces, a citizen army, train its officers for the 21st century?
The Myth of Mideast Stability The Myth of Mideast Stability
Monday, September 26, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The U.S. Ambassador to Israel recently told the International Conference on Economic Regional Cooperation in Tel Aviv that unless Israel and the Palestinians resume negotiations, "the lack of peace will decrease stability dangerously" in the Middle East.
The Wages of Durban The Wages of Durban
Wednesday, September 21, 2011 by Arch Puddington | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

In the days just prior to the assault on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the World Conference Against Racism (WCAR) was very much in the news, and for reasons that are altogether relevant to the mass murder that took place on September 11, 2001.
Settling for Statehood Settling for Statehood
Monday, September 19, 2011 by Diana Muir Appelbaum | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly has just begun.  Unless a diplomatic miracle happens, that body will soon be asked to approve what amounts to a unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood.  Palestinian spokesmen say they had no choice but to make their end run around serious negotiations with Israel.
Building Jerusalem Building Jerusalem
Friday, September 16, 2011 by Hadassah Levy | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

On the edge of Route 1 as that thoroughfare runs through eastern Jerusalem lies an Arab neighborhood by the name of Sheikh Jarrah. In one section of the neighborhood, an Israeli flag waves and Jews walk back and forth to the tomb of Simon the Just, who served as high priest in the Second Temple.
Israel’s Isolation Problem Israel’s Isolation Problem
Thursday, September 15, 2011 by Elliot Jager | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Aryeh Golan, the morning news anchor for Israeli public radio, summed up the feelings of Israelis on Sunday when he said, "In Turkey the government is against us, in Egypt the mob is against us, and at the UN the majority is against us."
West Bank Blues West Bank Blues
Wednesday, September 14, 2011 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Few groups are as demonized in public discourse as "the Jewish settlers" of the West Bank. To listen to the pundits, these international outlaws are single-handedly preventing the achievement of a utopian peace in the Middle East.
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Editors' Picks
Move Over, Jerusalem and Athens Joseph Bottum, Weekly Standard. "We may still derive an intellectual and spiritual geography from such ideas as Athens and Jerusalem.  But we are able to do so only because they are nodes in the empire of Ancient Rome."
Whatever Happened to the Hittites? Trevor Bryce, Archaeology Odyssey. The Hittite Empire once stretched from the Aegean in the west to the Euphrates in the east.  But when invaders finally destroyed its capital, Hattusa, they found the city deserted.
Should Religion Be Commercialized? Michael A. Helfand, First Things. Recent conflicts between law and religion in America have centered on the intersection of commerce and religion.  But commercialization of religion is not the problem—it's the solution.
A Time for Torture? Michael J. Broyde, Jacob L. Wright, Huffington Post. "If we can save innocent lives by applying psychic and physical anguish to those who pose an imminent threat, then it would be morally untenable for a society to categorically exclude this as an option."
Holograms of the Holocaust , Associated Press. The Holocaust is fading from living memory, but future generations will be able to meet Holocaust survivors face-to-face—as 3-D holograms.
Rehabilitating Herod Jessica Steinberg, Times of Israel. "He’s notoriously known as the bad guy," says the curator of the Israel Museum's vast new exhibit on King Herod.  "But this man was a riddle."
Saving Aramaic Ariel Sabar, Smithsonian. Aramaic, the language of the Talmud, is dying as a spoken language.  So, Cambridge professor Geoffrey Khan is racing from Tblisi to Chicago to document every dialect.
The Redemptive Chutzpah of Ed Koch Thane Rosenbaum, Jewish Week. As New York City’s mayor from 1978 to 1989, Ed Koch, who died last week, is credited with having saved the city from bankruptcy—in a "brashly Jewish way."
Asking Hagel the Real Questions Jeffrey Goldberg, Bloomberg. Chuck Hagel seems to believe that without the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the Middle East would be a "placid lake"—a view "utterly discredited by events."
The Fatal Misjudgment Christoph Strupp, Spiegel. Reacting to Hitler's rise to power 80 years ago this week, U.S. Consul George Messersmith called him "only a phase in the development towards more stable political conditions."