Why Netanyahu was wrong over Mandela

There is an idle habit I picked up in childhood which I have never quite shaken off. I suspect there are other JC readers who share it too. When confronted with any kind of list of the world’s nations, my eye runs an instinctive, involuntary check to see if Israel is among them. Flags flying outside a hotel or along a boulevard: I look for the blue and white. In the lobby of an airport, where ‘welcome’ is spelled out in dozens of different languages: I search for the distinctive script that says Baruch Habah. Those bars where the enterprising landlord has collected the world’s banknotes under glass: I won’t rest till I’ve spotted the head of Moshe Sharett or SY Agnon.

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

Why Netanyahu was wrong over Mandela

There is an idle habit I picked up in childhood which I have never quite shaken off. I suspect there are other JC readers who share it too. When confronted with any kind of list of the world’s nations, my eye runs an instinctive, involuntary check to see if Israel is among them. Flags flying outside a hotel or along a boulevard: I look for the blue and white. In the lobby of an airport, where ‘welcome’ is spelled out in dozens of different languages: I search for the distinctive script that says Baruch Habah. Those bars where the enterprising landlord has collected the world’s banknotes under glass: I won’t rest till I’ve spotted the head of Moshe Sharett or SY Agnon.

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

Arsenal vs Spurs? It’s Doves vs Hawks

The plural of anecdote is not data, I know. A few random experiences do not a scientific sample make. I appreciate that, too. So I tread warily — not least because I am about to venture into territory where two of the most toxic divisions in our community converge. But here goes.

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

Was the Daily Mail piece antisemitic?

You didn’t have to be Jewish, to adapt an old phrase, to feel queasy at the Daily Mail’s attack on Ralph Miliband. Plenty of Britons, including, I suspect, many Mail readers, will have disliked the notion of condemning a dead man who cannot defend himself and of suggesting a son should be blamed for the words and beliefs of his father.

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

Rabin, Arafat and a handshake of hope

It was twenty years ago today. On September 13 1993, in bright sunshine and nudged together by Bill Clinton – younger than the others, but playing the father figure – Yitzhak Rabin extended a reluctant hand to a smiling Yasser Arafat before an audience on the White House lawn.

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

Ani Yonatan. Efshar l’azor li?*

Several years ago I did a Jewish event alongside Michael Gove. It was clear whose views the audience preferred. Courteous, witty and as hawkish as they were on Israel, he was the son-in-law of their dreams (apart from the obvious drawback).

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle

When the Israel boycott goes mainstream

Sometimes it takes just a single word. This particular word, used three times in a newspaper article, offered a glimpse of an unwelcome future - one in which Israel is seen all but universally as a pariah state. It appeared in a Daily Express report o...

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Plan could end in blame game

The long-ago BBC Jerusalem correspondent, Michael Elkins, once lamented that too many war reporters had not served a journalistic apprenticeship by working on a local newspaper. How, he asked, could they understand the grief of a woman in Beirut devast...

Published by: The Jewish Chronicle