Friday, October 22nd | 16 Heshvan 5782

The Top 100 People Positively Influencing Jewish Life, 2021


Xiyue Wang


American doctoral student Xiyue Wang’s four-year nightmare of incarceration in an Iranian prison began in 2015, when he was arrested by the authorities on trumped up charges of espionage after being granted a visa to conduct archival research in Iran. Sentenced to ten years in jail, Wang was released in 2019 in a prisoner exchange having spent 40 months in the notorious Evin jail. Speaking at a special event sponsored by The Algemeiner in April, Wang discussed how his perceptions of Israel were changed by his direct experience of Iranian repression. He observed that he had been “sympathetic to the cause of Israel as a nation state, but I was also critical of Israel, just like most academics would be, before I went to Iran. But then, having experienced the regime firsthand, having seen how the regime conducts things — I realized that Israel’s behavior in relation to Iran is completely understandable.” (Photo:


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Shani Avigal

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