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Book Reviews

Nothing Abides: Perspectives on the Middle East and Islam (REVIEW) February 14, 2016 3:48 am

Nothing Abides: Perspectives on the Middle East and Islam (REVIEW)

Nothing Abides: Perspectives on the Middle East and Islam, by Daniel Pipes. Transaction Publishers,...

The Collected Works of Primo Levi, Edited by Ann Goldstein (REVIEW) February 1, 2016 5:26 am

The Collected Works of Primo Levi, Edited by Ann Goldstein (REVIEW)

Primo Levi and Elie Wiesel were the two most immediate and authentic literary voices who gave witness...

Tracing Chabad’s History and Success (REVIEW) January 28, 2016 5:34 am

Tracing Chabad’s History and Success (REVIEW)

The secret of Chabad’s worldwide success is revealed by veteran Chabad shliach (emissary)...

‘The Pater’ Tells a Story of Childlessness From the Rare Male Perspective (REVIEW) January 1, 2016 7:43 am

‘The Pater’ Tells a Story of Childlessness From the Rare Male Perspective (REVIEW)

JNS.org – Dozens if not hundreds of books have been written about the childlessness...

Looking to the Past for Lessons on How to Live Today (REVIEW) December 23, 2015 7:29 am

Looking to the Past for Lessons on How to Live Today (REVIEW)

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks’ latest book, Not In God’s Name, deals with the literal and figurative...

In the Middle East, ‘The Tail Wags the Dog’ (REVIEW) November 22, 2015 7:28 am

In the Middle East, ‘The Tail Wags the Dog’ (REVIEW)

Blaming the West has become the most pervasive method of teaching for many Middle East studies...

How to Win a Debate With an Israel-Hater (REVIEW) November 11, 2015 7:28 am

How to Win a Debate With an Israel-Hater (REVIEW)

Despite Michael Harris’ substantial previous work as a pro-Israel advocate — including...

Britain’s Former Chief Rabbi Tackles the Roots of Islamist Terror in New Book (INTERVIEW) October 25, 2015 6:40 am

Britain’s Former Chief Rabbi Tackles the Roots of Islamist Terror in New Book (INTERVIEW)

An ominous shadow has swept across the Middle East and North Africa, leaving chaos and carnage...

‘Pastry Secrets’ Arrive Just in Time for Rosh Hashanah September 10, 2015 1:54 pm

‘Pastry Secrets’ Arrive Just in Time for Rosh Hashanah

JNS.org – Babka. Strudel. Stollen. Danish pastry. Not to mention Gugelhopf and Charlotte....

Fusing Israeli and Holocaust History, Novel Offers a ‘Middle Eastern Western’ September 8, 2015 10:12 am

Fusing Israeli and Holocaust History, Novel Offers a ‘Middle Eastern Western’

JNS.org – There is a game that all of us have played at some time in our lives. We...

A Righteous Gentile Navigates the Sharkpool of Washington’s Middle East Correspondents (REVIEW) August 20, 2015 2:11 pm

A Righteous Gentile Navigates the Sharkpool of Washington’s Middle East Correspondents (REVIEW)

The Tribalist, by Louis Marano, is ostensibly a work of fiction but at its core a kind of...

Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW) July 1, 2015 10:04 am

Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW)

It is cocktail hour on an April afternoon in 2004. The sun is hot on Amsterdam’s canals,...

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  • Features Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    JNS.org – Aside from Israel itself, those with a vested interest in the Jewish state are accustomed to tracking developments related to Middle East players such as Iran, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. But much global attention has recently focused on the Caucasus region at the Europe-Asia border, specifically on the suddenly intensified violence between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh area of western Azerbaijan. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, while not taking place in Israel’s immediate neighborhood, does have what one scholar called […]

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  • Blogs Features Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    JNS.org – On Friday, April 22, 196 nations across the world mark Earth Day, the annual day dedicated to environmental protection that was enacted in 1970. Not to be forgotten on this day is Israel, which is known as the “start-up nation” for its disproportionate amount of technological innovation, including in the area of protecting the environment. For Earth Day 2016, JNS.org presents a sampling of the Jewish state’s internal achievements and global contributions in the environmental realm. Water conservation Israeli […]

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  • Arts and Culture World New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    Holocaust humor and the role that laughter played in the lives of Jews during World War II are the focus of a documentary that made its world premiere on Monday at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. In The Last Laugh, first- and second-generation survivors, as well as famous Jewish and non-Jewish comedians, discuss their thoughts on when joking about the death camps is appropriate or taboo. “Nazi humor, that’s OK. Holocaust humor, no,” Jewish comedic giant, actor and filmmaker Mel Brooks says in the film. “Anything I […]

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  • Arts and Culture Blogs Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    JNS.org – Sherri Mandell’s life was devastated on May 8, 2001, when her 13-year-old son Koby was murdered by terrorists on the outskirts of the Israeli Jewish community of Tekoa. Yet Mandell not only shares the story of her loss, but also celebrates the lessons she has learned from tragedy. Indeed, “celebrate” is this Israeli-American author’s word choice. Her second book, The Road to Resilience: From Chaos to Celebration (Toby Press), came out earlier this year. The lesson: in every celebration, there is […]

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  • Features Opinion For Alan Gross, Cuban Prison Didn’t Harden His Heart or Weaken His Ambition

    For Alan Gross, Cuban Prison Didn’t Harden His Heart or Weaken His Ambition

    JNS.org – Alan Gross used to be nothing more to me than a tragic headline. When I started my position at this news service in July 2011, Gross had been imprisoned in Cuba since December 2009 for what that country called “crimes against the state.” Gross, a subcontractor for the United States Agency for International Development, went to Cuba to help the Jewish community there access the Internet. After his arrest, he received a trial he describes as a “B movie,” […]

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  • Arts and Culture Features New Movie Shows How Global Economic Instability Grew From Very Local Greed

    New Movie Shows How Global Economic Instability Grew From Very Local Greed

    JNS.org – When I saw the recent Academy Award-winning film “The Big Short,” I was struck by the sheer genius of the financiers who devised the schemes and packaged the loans for resale, but it left me with unanswered questions about how the properties these loans represented were moved. “The Big Short” was largely about paper transactions, big money, and wealthy investors, and it mildly touched on the way the actual end-users — the home buyers and brokers — played into this […]

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  • Blogs Book Reviews Psychiatry and the Spirit

    Psychiatry and the Spirit

    Why do we think so negatively about psychiatrists that we still insult them by calling them shrinks? Some medics might be quacks, but we don’t generally refer to them as witches! Shrinks; The Untold Story of Psychiatry, by Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, is a sobering account of how psychiatry has swung from a marginal, unscientific mixture of weird theories into one of the most common and pervasive forms of treatment of what are commonly called “disorders of the mind.” Is it […]

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  • Features Opinion At Forbes Summit in Israel, Entrepreneurship Is a ‘Common Language’

    At Forbes Summit in Israel, Entrepreneurship Is a ‘Common Language’

    JNS.org – Nine months ago, Seth Cohen, director of network initiatives for the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, and Randall Lane, editor of Forbes Magazine, were schmoozing about the “vibrancy of Tel Aviv and soul of Jerusalem,” as Lane put it. They dreamed about how they could bring young and innovative millennials to the so-called “start-up nation.” From April 3-7, Forbes turned that dream into a reality. Israel played host to the first-ever Forbes Under 30 EMEA (Europe, the Middle East, and Africa) […]

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