Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld is former Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, where he founded and directed the Center's Post-Holocaust and Anti-Semitism program. Dr. Gerstenfeld is an international business and environmental strategist. Dr. Gerstenfeld is the author of many books including Revaluing Italy; Environment and Confusion; Israel's New Future Interviews; The State as Business: Do It Yourself Political Forecasting; Judaism, Environmentalism and the Environment; and The Environment in the Jewish Tradition-A Sustainable World. His latest book, Europe's Crumbling Myths exposes the origins of post-Holocaust anti-Semitism.

Publications by Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

From Ambivalence to Betrayal: The Left, the Jews, and Israel, by Robert Wistrich

Historian Robert Wistrich, who holds the Neuberger Chair for Modern European and Jewish History at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and is the head of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Anti-Semitism, publishes prolifically.   Read More »

The Abuse of Holocaust Memory in 2011-2012

The Holocaust has become a symbol of absolute evil in Western society.  Read More »

The Delegitimization of Israel in Schools in the Western World

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Never Again, Yet Again by Stephen D. Smith

Stephen D. Smith is a Christian theologian in his early forties. Together with his brother James, he founded the Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre near Nottingham, England, which opened in 1995. Smith presently heads the Shoah Foundation Institute in Los Angeles […]  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Joop den Uyl 1919-1987: Dromer en doordouwer (Joop den Uyl 1919-1987: Dreamer and Pusher) by Anet Bleich

As a rule book reviews deal with the author’s basic message.  Nonetheless, a book may contain information seemingly of secondary importance which can turn out to be of considerable interest, particularly for a journal devoted to Jewish political studies.  One such case is the biography of Joop den Uyl, the late Dutch prime minister, which includes personal and political information bearing on his relationship with Jews and Israel. Joop den Uyl was a leader of the Dutch Labor Party.   From 1973 to 1977, he served as prime minister of the most left-wing coalition government the Netherlands has ever known. His biographer, Anet Bleich is a well-known Dutch Jewish journalist, and her book attracted significant attention in the Netherlands.  Read More »

Judging the Netherlands: The Renewed Holocaust Restitution Process, 1997-2000

Reports of the commissions of inquiry revealed information about monies that had belonged to murdered Jews and were in the possession of the Dutch government, insurance companies, banks, and exchange brokers.  Read More »

Europe’s Crumbling Myths – The Post-Holocaust Origins of Today’s Anti-Semitism

Many thought Europe had progressed substantially following a greater understanding of the Holocaust, its causes and peoples’ behavior during it. There were several indicators for the thesis. This virtual trend is one likely explanation why the post-Holocaust period has not […]  Read More »

Belgium’s Attitudes toward Israel and the Jews

In Wallonia the Socialists are the leading party and often take hostile positions toward Israel. Israel’s friends there are mainly among the Liberals, even if some of their leaders are also anti-Israeli. The major Walloon media also frequently display very problematic attitudes toward Israel.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld – Anti-Jewish and Anti-Israel Sentiments in Western Schools

How anti-Semitism is manifesting itself in schools throughout Europe. A session of the November 8 2011 conference co-sponsored by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung ion Incitement to Terror and Violence–New Challenges , New Responses  Read More »

Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism in Western Schools

No. 112, 1 November 2011/ 4 Heshvan 5772 Anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism in schools or places related to them are significant problems in a number of Western countries. A third related topic concerns Holocaust education in a variety of European schools. When […]  Read More »

Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism in Dutch Schools

Anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism in schools or places related to them constitute a significant problem in a number of Western countries. In the coming years, this issue will have to be addressed internationally in much more detail. The major question is how much anti-Semitism do Jewish children encounter in schools? Other important issues are the nature of school curricula, the attitudes of the teachers, the presentation of the Holocaust in schools, security in and around Jewish schools, attacks on Jewish students outside of schools, and so on.  Read More »

Behind the Humanitarian Mask: The Nordic Countries, Israel and the Jews

In this book, thirteen essays and interviews discuss various aspects of the attitudes of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, and Iceland toward Israel and the Jews.  Read More »

The Abuse of Holocaust Memory: Distortions and Responses

In an increasingly uncertain world, the Holocaust is likely to continue to play an important role as the metaphor of absolute evil. This is all the more so as threats of genocide again appear in public statements. Fighting the main manipulations of the Holocaust requires first understanding the nature of the abuses. This must be followed by exposing the manipulations of the perpetrators, who should then be turned into the accused.  Read More »

Continuing to Distort the Holocaust: 2009-2011

In recent decades, the Holocaust has become the major contemporary symbol of absolute evil. As such, it has acquired a central place in the collective memory of Western societies. This development has been accompanied by an ongoing intentional distortion of its meaning.
Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on The Prime Ministers: An Intimate Narrative on Israeli Leadership, by Yehuda Avner

A Rich Retrospective
The Prime Ministers: An Intimate Narrative on Israeli Leadership, by Yehuda Avner, Toby Press, 2010. Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Hugo Logtenberg and Marcel Wiegman, Job Cohen – Burgemeester van Nederland

Job Cohen – A Politician of Expedience
Hugo Logtenberg and Marcel Wiegman, Job Cohen – Burgemeester van Nederland (Job Cohen – Mayor of the Netherlands), Nieuw Amsterdam, 2010. [Dutch]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

The Gaza Flotilla: Facts and Official Reactions

The Gaza flotilla was a well-thought-out provocation against Israel. The flotilla was falsely presented as an enterprise of humanitarian aid to a needy population. If that were indeed the case the organizers would have accepted Israel’s offer to dock the flotilla at the port of Ashdod.  Read More »

American Jewry’s Comfort Level: Present and Future

The challenges confronting American Jewry are multiple. Jewish continuity has many disparate aspects, among which are issues such as Jewish identity, education, marriage, aging, gender relations, the strengthening of communities, leadership, mobility, attitudes toward Israel, philanthropy, outreach, government relations, anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism, building alliances, interfaith relations, and many others. In a postmodern society, fragmentation of views on these issues is likely to increase further.  Read More »

How the Jewish Community Defeated the Banks and Stock Exchange in the 2000 Dutch Restitution Negotiations

In the mid-1990s there was a sudden renewed public interest in the issue of looted Jewish possessions during the war and their very partial restitution afterward. In the Netherlands, public interest in restitution issues gradually reemerged after several decades of almost total silence. In the late 1990s, public inquiries focused on the government, banks, insurers, and the Amsterdam Stock Exchange. At the turn of the twentieth century, the Amsterdam Stock Exchange was controlled by the major Dut  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on The Anti-Jewish Riots in Oslo, by Eirik Eiglad

2009: Norway’s Most Violent Anti-Semitic Riots Ever
The Anti-Jewish Riots in Oslo, by Eirik Eiglad, Communalism, 2010, 103 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Pius XII and the Destruction of the Jews

A Controversial Pope on the Way to Beatification
Pius XII: en de vernietiging van de joden (Pius XII and the Destruction of the Jews), by Dirk Verhofstadt, Houtekiet, 2008, 510 pp. [Dutch]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on The Romantic Bookkeeper

Dutch Minister Reviews Renewed Holocaust-Assets Restitution
De Romantische Boekhouder (The Romantic Bookkeeper), by Gerrit Zalm, Uitgeverij Balans, 2009, 402 pp. [Dutch]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Interested in Football, Reading about the Holocaust

Ajax, a leading Amsterdam soccer team, was Dutch champion many times and winner of the European Club Championship on several occasions. However, discussion of the soccer club and game in Simon Kuper’s book is, for the most part, a means by which to tell the story of the Jews in Dutch society before, during, and after the Holocaust. This is a clever marketing exercise. A book with a title focusing only on the Holocaust in the Netherlands would probably have attracted far fewer readers.  Read More »

Leading Dutch Ministers Look Back on End-of-Century Holocaust-Assets Restitution

In the final five years of the previous century, major international attention was focused on the postwar restitution of Holocaust assets. In particular, dormant Swiss bank accounts became a subject of debate. In this framework, new facts emerged regarding the shortcomings in the restitution of Holocaust assets in the Netherlands.  Read More »

How to Fight the Campus Battle against Old and New Anti-Semites: Motifs, Strategies, and Methods

The battle against old and new campus anti-Semitism is usually fought with classic methods. These include public debate, op-eds, letters to the editor, petitions, letters to university administrations or efforts to persuade them to take action, requests for the investigation of incidents, legal actions, and the mobilization of allies. These approaches alone are not adequate in the current circumstances.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Ajax, Holland vehamilhama [Ajax, Holland, and the war]

Interested in Football, Reading about the Holocaust
Ajax, Holland vehamilhama [Ajax, Holland, and the war], by Simon Kuper, Tel Aviv: Maariv, 2008, 240 pp. [Hebrew]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Justifying the Holocaust and Promoting a Second One

Holocaust justification consists of "explaining" that the Jews caused their enemies’ anti-Semitism and therefore were responsible for their own later destruction. The first part of this argument was prominent outside Nazi circles as well before World War II and occasionally returns nowadays.  Read More »

Holocaust Deflection and Whitewashing

Holocaust deflection entails admitting that the Holocaust happened while denying the complicity or various types of participation of countries, specific groups, or individuals despite ample evidence to the contrary. Major examples of deflection occur in those countries where, during the war, Germans were helped massively in the killing, deportation, and despoliation of the Jews.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Ten Days of Birthright Israel: A Journey in Young Adult Identity, by Leonard Saxe and Barry Chazan

The Largest Jewish Communal Educational Experience Ever
Ten Days of Birthright Israel: A Journey in Young Adult Identity, by Leonard Saxe and Barry Chazan, Lebanon, NH: Brandeis University Press, 2008, 223 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on The Trouble with Textbooks: Distorting History and Religion, by Gary A. Tobin and Dennis R. Ybarra

How American Textbooks Mislead on Jews and Israel
The Trouble with Textbooks: Distorting History and Religion, by Gary A. Tobin and Dennis R. Ybarra, Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 209 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld   Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Cartoons and Extremism: Israel and the Jews in Arab and Western Media, by Joël Kotek

Analyzing Cartoons to Capture the Essence of Anti-Semitism
Cartoons and Extremism: Israel and the Jews in Arab and Western Media, by Joël Kotek, Edgware: Vallentine Mitchell, 2009, 200 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Another Year of Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism in Norway

Again over this past year there were significant anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli incidents in Norway. Among these were anti-Semitic television satire programs, an act of the Nazification of Israel by a Norwegian diplomat, physical attacks on a pro-Israeli demonstration, death threats against Jews and a desecration of a Jewish cemetery.  Read More »

The Gaza War and the New Outburst of Anti-Semitism

Anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli manifestations reached post-Second World War highs during Israel’s recent Gaza campaign. A number of new hate thresholds were crossed. There were much-increased public expressions of equating Israel with Nazi Germany. Calls for the murder of Jews abounded for the first time in demonstrations in Germany, as well as in the United States. A number of actions by various independent Muslim bodies in several Western countries manifested their desire to conquer the public  Read More »

Symbolic and Other Roles of Jews in Dutch Society

Out of the total Dutch population of 16 million, Jews represent about two in every thousand. Jews often play a symbolic role in Dutch society which exceeds their actual importance. One facet of this is their image as absolute victims. Second, the Jewish community has on various occasions been used by Dutch authorities as instruments in achieving political goals. The Jews have also been the typical outsiders in Dutch society and anti-Semitic stereotypes are still very much alive. In addition, Dut  Read More »

The UCU May 2007 Boycott Resolution and its Aftermath

From Manfred Gerstenfeld ( ed.) Academics against Israel and the Jews The UCU May 2007 Boycott Resolution and its Aftermath   Read More »

Academics against Israel and the Jews

This essay addresses the major aspects of the international attacks on Jews and Israel on campus. It also proposes ways to successfully challenge the harassment from the academic world.  Read More »

Utrecht University: The Myth of Jewish Cannibalism, Censorship, and Fear of Muslim Intimidation* – Manfred Gerstenfeld

From Manfred Gerstenfeld ( ed.) Academics again Israel and the Jews Utrecht University: The Myth of Jewish Cannibalism, Censorship, and Fear of Muslim Intimidation*   Read More »

Academics against Israel and the Jews

This essay addresses the major aspects of the international attacks on Jews and Israel on campus. It also proposes ways to successfully challenge the harassment from the academic world.  Read More »

2007-2008: Another Year of Global Academic Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism

The academic year 2007-2008 saw ongoing anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic incidents in various countries. Among them is Israel Apartheid Week, which has become an annual ritual in a number of cities on several continents. So have the calls of the University and College Union (UCU) in the United Kingdom for discriminatory measures against Israeli universities and academics. In several universities, such as on some campuses of the University of California, anti-Israelism is endemic.  Read More »

Academics Against Israel and the Jews

Anti-Semites succeeded in murdering six million Jews only after significant parts of the supposedly enlightened world accepted as a matter of fact that Jews were dangerous and inferior beings. Genocide became legitimate when this attitude permeated universities, the intelligentsia, and […]  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on The Jews Are Coming Back: The Return of the Jews to Their Countries of Origin after WWII

European Anti-Semitism Remained after the War
The Jews Are Coming Back: The Return of the Jews to Their Countries of Origin after WWII, edited by David Bankier, Yad Vashem and Berghahn Books, 2005, 319 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Holocaust Trivialization

Holocaust trivialization is one among various categories of Holocaust distortion. It is a tool for some ideologically or politically motivated activists to metaphorically compare phenomena they oppose to the industrial-scale destruction of the Jews in World War II by Germans, Austrians, and their allies. Examples include environmental problems, abortion, the slaughter of animals, the use of tobacco, and human rights abuses.  Read More »

Norway: Extreme Expressions of Anti-Israeli and Anti-Semitic Attitudes

Norway, which gets little international publicity, seeks to project an image as a peace-loving country. Few people outside it are familiar with the extreme anti-Israeli expressions among the country’s elites. In recent years there also have been a number of anti-Semitic incidents.   Read More »

The Multiple Distortions of Holocaust Memory

Recent years have seen greatly increased attempts to manipulate Holocaust history and its memory. For several decades much attention has been devoted to Holocaust denial. Distortions of the Holocaust past, however, occur in many other ways. The number of mutations of such distortions is also expanding. Manipulations belong to several groupings, such as: Holocaust Promotion, Holocaust Denial, Holocaust Depreciation, Holocaust Deflection, Prewar and Wartime Holocaust Equivalence, Postwar Holocaust  Read More »

Muslim-Jewish Interaction in the Netherlands

The immigration of a large number of Muslims into the Netherlands over the past four decades has led to major challenges for the Dutch Jewish community. These include, for instance, increased verbal and physical violence against Jews and the Jewish community, the need for greater security measures, impacts on the teaching of the Holocaust in Dutch schools, and changed attitudes of the authorities and third parties toward needs of the Jewish community.  Read More »

Gerstenfeld on Het Zijn Net Mensen: Beelden Uit het Midden-Oosten (They Are Like Human Beings: Pictures from the Middle East) by Joris Luyendijk

Mingling Disclosures and Distortions
Het Zijn Net Mensen: Beelden Uit het Midden-Oosten (They Are Like Human Beings: Pictures from the Middle East) by Joris Luyendijk, Uitgeverij Podium, 2006, 215 pp. [Dutch]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Gerstenfeld on Het Marokkanendrama by Fleur Jurgens

The Nonintegrated Moroccans in the Netherlands
Het Marokkanendrama (The Moroccans’ Drama) by Fleur Jurgens, J. M. Meulenhoff, 2007, 176 pp. [Dutch]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Recent Developments on the Academic Boycott: A Case Study

The late-May anti-Israeli resolution at the first conference of the University and College Union (UCU) in the United Kingdom launched a new round in the debate on boycotting Israel. The anti-Israeli actions do not seem to derive from genuine concerns about the Palestinians’ fate. This can be gauged by the boycotters’ indifference to what happens to Palestinians elsewhere. The battle over the academic boycott has now been internationalized, as many consider that major academic issues rather than  Read More »

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change? Part I

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change? Part I
Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change? Part II

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change? Part II
Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Legal Divergences Between the European Union and Israel with Regard to Jerusalem

From Manfred Gerstenfeld: European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change?
Legal Divergences Between the European Union and Israel With Regard to Jerusalem Interview with Ruth Lapidoth  Read More »

What the West Should Learn From the Assault on Israel and the Jews

European states over the past decades did not understand that the threats Israel was encountering in those years were essentially precursors of the menaces they would face as well. Had leading European politicians realized that a broader assault by radical Islam was underway – ultimately directed at their countries rather than at Israel alone – they likely would not have made the major errors they committed – particularly in the area of immigration – that have undermined European security today.  Read More »

How the European Union’s Attitude Toward Israel Evolved

For a very long time the Europeans’ weakness has been that so often somebody else has to solve their problems. Frequently the United States has had to do so. Yugoslavia and Iraq have been cases in point. It is possible that this will now change as European nations make major contributions to the multinational force that is being deployed on the southern borders of Lebanon after the Second Lebanon War of summer 2006.  Read More »

Holocaust Inversion: The Portraying of Israel and Jews as Nazis

The false accusation of Holocaust inversion—the portraying of Israel, Israelis, and Jews as Nazis—is a major distortion of history. This anti-Semitic concept claims that Israel behaves against the Palestinians as Germany did to the Jews in World War II. “The victims have become perpetrators,” is one major slogan of the inverters. By shifting the moral responsibility for genocide, Holocaust inversion also contains elements of Holocaust denial.  Read More »

What Israel Can Learn from the International Court of Justice Ruling on Genocide in Srebrenica

Since it has now been ruled that states can be tried for genocide, a case can probably be brought under the Genocide Convention against Iran since Article III of the Genocide Convention describes incitement to genocide as a punishable act. The ICJ ruling may have applicability to the Palestinian Authority, as well. The Charter of Hamas, the leading party in the PA, calls for genocide.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on De Drie van Breda: Duitse oorlogsmisdadigers in Nederlandse gevangenschap 1945-1989

Decades of Dutch Debate on Releasing World War II Criminals
De Drie van Breda: Duitse oorlogsmisdadigers in Nederlandse gevangenschap 1945-1989 by Hinke Piersma
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Anti-Israelism and Anti-Semitism: Common Characteristics and Motifs

Anti-Semitism’s core theme is that Jews embody absolute evil. The three main permutations of the core theme are religious anti-Semitism—one might call it more precisely anti-Judaism, ethnic (racist) anti-Semitism, and anti-Israelism or anti-Zionism. The anti-Semitic character of anti-Israelism can be proved through the analysis of cartoons, opinion survey findings, statistical analysis, and semantics. During the summer 2006 war in Lebanon, further proof emerged that anti-Semitism and anti-Israel  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Die Shoah erzählt: Zeugnis und Experiment in der Literatur

The Structural Shortfall of Holocaust Fiction
Die Shoah erzählt: Zeugnis und Experiment in der Literatur (The Shoah Related: Testimony and Experiment in Literature), by Elrud Ibsch, Max Niemeyer Verlag, 2004, 196 pp. [German]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Using and Abusing the Holocaust

An Author’s One-Liners Attack Holocaust Myths
Using and Abusing the Holocaust by Lawrence L. Langer, Indiana University Press, 2006, 165 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld   Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Ireland and the Palestine Question, 1948-2004

Ireland: A Country Hostile to Israel
Ireland and the Palestine Question, 1948-2004, by Rory Miller, Irish Academic Press, 2005, 266 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Figli di un dio locale: Giovani e differenze culturali in Italia

Italian Prejudices against Jews and Israel
Figli di un dio locale: Giovani e differenze culturali in Italia. (Sons of a Local God: Youngsters and Cultural Differences in Italy), by Enzo Campelli, FrancoAngeli, 2004, 244 pp. [Italian]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld   Read More »

Ahmadinejad, Iran, and Holocaust Manipulation: Methods, Aims, and Reactions

The genocidal attacks on Israel and the distortion of Holocaust history should be seen as part of Ahmadinejad’s overall political agenda concerning the West and Israel. They derive from his apocalyptic Islamic ideology. Iranian Holocaust manipulation is therefore likely to continue as long as he is in power.  Read More »

How to Fight Anti-Israeli Campaigns on Campus

The last four years have seen the promotion of boycott and divestment campaigns against Israel in a number of countries. There have also been verbal or even physical aggressions and discrimination against Israelis and Jews. The fact that the anti- Israeli boycott campaigners do not propose boycotts of the crime-inciting Palestinian universities indicates strongly discriminatory and even racist attitudes.  Read More »

Europe’s Mindset Toward Israel as Accentuated by the Lebanon War

The European Union has for many years announced its ambition to be a global political actor – to act as a counterweight to the United States on the world scene. The summer war in Lebanon could have been a major opportunity for the EU to show that it could move rapidly to stop a conflict in its tracks by offering a solution in which it would make a major contribution.   Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories after September 11

Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories in Contemporary Germany
Antisemitische Verschwörungstheorien nach dem 11. September (Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories after September 11) by Tobias Jaecker, LIT, 2005, 208 pp. [in German]
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld   Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Die Bombe im Jüdischen Gemeindehaus

The Failed Bombing by Leftists of the Berlin Jewish Community Center on Kristallnacht 1969
Die Bombe im Jüdischen Gemeindehaus, by Wolfgang Kraushaar, Hamburger Edition HIS Verlagsges, 300 pp., 2005.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Germany and Israel in the 1990s and Beyond: Still a“Special Relationship”?

German-Israeli Relations since the 1990s
Germany and Israel in the 1990s and Beyond: Still a“Special Relationship”? by Yves Pallade, Peter Lang, 2005, 598 pp.
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on “Nur ein Durchgangsland”: Arbeitslager und Internierungsheime für Flüchtlinge unter Emigranten in der Schweiz 1940-1949

Swiss Policy toward Refugees Before, During, and after World War II
"Nur ein Durchgangsland": Arbeitslager und Internierungsheime für Flüchtlinge unter Emigranten in der Schweiz 1940-1949 ("Only a Transit Country": Work Camps and Internment Homes for Refugees among Emigrants in Switzerland, 1940-1949) by Simon Erlanger
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Apologies for Holocaust Behavior and Refusal to Do So: The Dutch Case in an International Context

The issue of Dutch institutional and governmental apologies for Holocaust behavior came to the fore again with the unexpected apology of Dutch Railways to the Jewish community in September 2005. These belated apologies should be seen in a broader Dutch context. After World War II, many myths about crucial aspects of the Dutch Jews’ fate substituted for history. Currently, the Dutch government’s refusal to apologize to the Jewish community stands out even more.  Read More »

Marching for Israel Against Ahmadinejad

On 26 October 2005, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, president of Iran, made a genocidal call for the elimination of Israel at the “World without Zionism” conference in Teheran. Other speakers were terrorist leaders Hassan Nasrallah of Hizballah and Khaled Mash’al of Hamas.  Read More »

Spain, NATO, and Israel

“In recent years there has been a change for the better in Israel’s portrayal in the Spanish media. Now at least a few columnists expose Palestinian terrorism, attack anti-Semitism, and outline the problematic context in which Israel has to operate. Op-ed writers like Florentino Portero at ABC, Gabriel Albiac at La Razon, and others sharply contrast with the correspondents and editors at the same newspapers. They remain, however, a small minority. A few years ago, if you wrote an article defendi  Read More »

Germany and Israel: Between Obligation, Taboo, and Resentment

Gerhard Schröder, too young to be part of Nazi Germany, was the first German chancellor who did not seem to labor under the historical cloud that preoccupied all his predecessors from Konrad Adenauer to Helmut Kohl. Its three components were: inherited guilt feelings toward the Jews, a sense of moral obligation toward Israel, and, especially under Adenauer in the early days of the Federal Republic, the sense that it was good realpolitik to be on the side of the young Jewish state.  Read More »

Israel, The European Commission, Europe, and the Netherlands

During my commissionership, all matters concerning foreign policy were in the hands of the Italian president Romano Prodi and the British commissioner for international relations Chris Patten. Israel was not a much-debated topic in the Commission. Patten occasionally put it on our agenda.  Read More »

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change

European-Israeli Relations: Between Confusion and Change? reassesses the current interactions between Europe and Israel. It is a sequel to Israel and Europe: An Expanding Abyss? which was published in spring 2005. By the end of 2004 the European Union was […]  Read More »

Group-Targeted Misanthropy and Anti-Semitism in Germany – Deutsche Zustände Folge 1, Folge 2, by Wilhelm Heitmeyer

This series of books analyzes issues in Germany related to “group-targeted misanthropy” (GMF).1 This term includes categories such as racism, anti-Semitism, hatred of foreigners, homeless, homosexuals, and Muslims, as well as sexism. Though anti-Semitism is mentioned in the first two books as well, it is a major topic only in the third.  Read More »

The Mohammed-Cartoon Controversy, Israel, and the Jews: A Case Study

Israel and the Jews were drawn – almost inevitably – into the controversy between Muslims and the West once the violent protests against the cartoons rapidly accelerated in the first week of February 2006. This was yet another manifestation of the hard core of anti-Semitism that portrays the Jews as responsible for all evil in the world.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Deutsche Zustände, edited by Wilhelm Heitmeyer

Jewish Political Studies Review 18:1-2 (Spring 2006) This series of books analyzes issues in Germany related to “group-targeted misanthropy” (GMF).1 This term includes categories such as racism, anti-Semitism, hatred of foreigners, homeless, homosexuals, and Muslims, as well as sexism. Though […]  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Élèves sous influence by Barbara Lefebvre and Ève Bonnivard

Manfred Gerstenfeld on
Élèves sous influence
by Barbara Lefebvre and Ève Bonnivard  Read More »

Decades of Dutch Debate on Releasing World War II Criminals De Drie van Breda: Duitse oorlogsmisdadigers in Nederlandse gevangenschap 1945-1989 by Hinke Piersma

Excessive tolerance for intolerance has been a major characteristic of the Netherlands in the past decades. A core element of this “pseudohumanism” is the emphasis on the needs and “human rights” of criminals, often at the expense of their victims.  Read More »

The Reconstitution of Postwar German Jewry – Jews in Post-Holocaust Germany 1945-1953 by Jay Howard Geller, Cambridge University Press, 2005, 330 pp.

In April 2005, the sixtieth anniversary of the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp was officially commemorated. Paul Spiegel, chairman of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, praised the Jews who had stayed in Germany after the Holocaust. He stated that, despite inner doubts and strong criticism from Jews abroad, they had dared to rebuild Jewish communities there. He added that one should remember them on this day with great gratitude and respect.  Read More »

Technology and Jewish Life1,2

Technology continues to have a strong and specific impact on Jewish life. It has caused major social changes in various areas, such as the suburbanization of Jews, women’s increased learning, and the possibility of participating in worldwide community activities. From a socio-halakhic viewpoint, technology influences Jews’ choice of residence, has socialized and politicized kashrut certification, and has changed modes of Jewish study.  Read More »

The Autumn 2005 Riots in France – Part I

The influence of the French riots in autumn 2005 went far beyond the country’s borders. Many profound problems that came to the fore during the French riots also exist, in somewhat different form, in several other West European countries.  Read More »

The Autumn 2005 Riots in France – Part II

The influence of the French riots in autumn 2005 went far beyond the country’s borders. Many profound problems that came to the fore during the French riots also exist, in somewhat different form, in several other West European countries.  Read More »

The Twenty-first-century Total War Against Israel and the Jews: Part Two

The Perpetrators, the Anti-Semitic Hate Motifs Used, the War’s Methodology, the Hate Distribution Mechanisms, and a Strategy for Countercombat  Read More »

The Twenty-first-century Total War Against Israel and the Jews: Part One

The multiple ongoing attacks on Israel and the Jews in the new century combine into a system, as if controlled by an invisible hand, that is very similar to a postmodern "total war." This complex whole is of a radically different nature than the war of the Nazis against the Jews in the previous century.  Read More »

Ahmadinejad Calls for Israel’s Elimination and Declares War on the West: A Case Study of Incitement to Genocide

Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s call for the elimination of Israel led to many condemnations, including from the UN Security Council and the European Union. This censure – though only verbal – differed from the usual Western silence concerning genocidal statements of Iranian leaders in previous years. Possible explanations for the West’s reaction include opposition to Iran’s nuclear program and Iran’s support for terrorism in Iraq.  Read More »

The American Legal System and Holocaust Restitution – Holocaust Justice: The Battle for Restitution in America’s Courts, by Michael J. Bazyler

Michael Bazyler notes that according to historians, the Germans stole assets valued at $230-$320 million in today’s monies from the Jews in Europe. The renewed Holocaust restitution process since the end of the twentieth century has drawn major political and media interest in many countries. It has led to substantial payments to both Jews and non-Jews. Only part of these involve stolen assets and, despite their size, represent only small percentages of the overall amount plundered or even of what had already been paid out since the war. The process has also stimulated official research about Holocaust and post-Holocaust attitudes toward the Jews in more than twenty-five countries.  Read More »

Muslim Intimidation in French Schools not only Threatens Jews Les territoires perdus de la République: Antisémitisme, racisme et sexisme en milieu scolaire by Emmanuel Brenner

This book’s title translates as “The Lost Territories of the (French) Republic.” It refers to the breakdown of law and order in various domains of French society. This manifests itself, for instance, in the fear of the police to enter certain areas in and around major cities throughout the country. These no-go areas are largely populated by North African immigrants and their descendants. Many are Arabs, others Berbers.  Read More »

European Politics: Double Standards Toward Israel

The relationship between Europe and Israel is complex, tense, and historically loaded. A growing gap has developed between their political outlooks. European political actions can continue to cause Israel so many problems and harms that these in the longer run may increasingly dominate all other aspects of the relationship.
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Manfred Gerstenfeld on Rising from the Muck: The New Anti-Semitism in Europe

A Resurgent Malady
Rising from the Muck: The New Anti-Semitism in Europe by Pierre- André Taguieff, Ivan R. Dee
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Les territoires perdus de la République

Muslim Intimidation in French Schools not only Threatens Jews
Les territoires perdus de la République: Antisémitisme, racisme et sexisme en milieu scolaire by Emmanuel Brenner
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Holocaust Justice: The Battle for Restitution in America’s Courts

The American Legal System and Holocaust Restitution
Holocaust Justice: The Battle for Restitution in America’s Courts, by Michael J. Bazyler
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

Israel and Europe: An Expanding Abyss

Israel and Europe: An Expanding Abyss? explores the complex, tense, and historically loaded relationship between Europe and Israel. Over the years a Fissure has developed between their political views. Many believe that it continues to widen and has become an […]  Read More »

European Misreading of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Finnish Foreign Minister Tuomioja – A Case Study

Next year Finland will assume the EU’s rotating presidency, making Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja a player in the organization’s Middle Eastern policy. Tuomioja’s views are representative of a deeper undercurrent in contemporary European criticism of Israel, one that combines factual ignorance and misconceptions about the Arab-Israeli conflict with latent animosity borne out of the Continent’s millenarian legacy of anti-Semitism.
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The EU Constitutional Crisis and Its Impact on Israel

The rejection of the proposed European Union constitution in France and the Netherlands has weakened Europe’s overall status and may influence Europe’s role in the Middle East. While past EU policies have been heavily biased against Israel, as it enters a period of disarray, EU policies may become structurally less threatening to Israel. For many years, France has been the driving force behind anti-Israel political attitudes in the EU.   Read More »

The EU Constitutional Crisis, the Middle East, and Israel

The rejection of the proposed European Union constitution in France and the Netherlands has weakened Europe’s overall status and may influence Europe’s role in the Middle East. While past EU policies have been heavily biased against Israel, as it enters a period of disarray, EU policies may become less threatening to Israel.
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The EU Constitutional Crisis, the Middle East, and Israel

Vol. 4, No. 25     26 June 2005 The rejection of the proposed European Union constitution in France and the Netherlands has weakened Europe’s overall status and may influence Europe’s role in the Middle East. While past EU policies […]  Read More »

Rewriting Germany’s Nazi Past – A Society in Moral Decline

Germany’s democratic postwar governments have made great efforts to make the country again acceptable in the civilized world.   Read More »

Jews against Israel

Anti-Semitic attacks on Israel by Israelis and Jews are frequently indistinguishable from those by gentiles. Among the specific aspects in the anti-Israel writings of some Jews are the use of their family’s Holocaust experiences, their references to being Jewish or an association of some kind with Israel.  Read More »

Manfred Gerstenfeld on Poison: Modern Manifestations of a Blood Libel

Poison: Modern Manifestations of a Blood Libel by Raphael Israeli
Reviewed by Manfred Gerstenfeld  Read More »

The Deep Roots of Anti-Semitism in European Society

The resurgence of European anti-Semitism after the Holocaust suggests that it has deep roots in society. It has been fostered in a great variety of ways by so many, for such a long time, in all European countries that one might consider this form of hate and discrimination as inherent to European culture and a part of European "values." New European anti-Semitism often originates from a young age, which indicates that it is an anti-Semitism of the future rather than of the past.  Read More »

Radical Islam in The Netherlands: A Case Study of a Failed European Policy

On December 23, 2004, the Dutch Ministry of the Interior published a 60-page report entitled From Dawa to Jihad. Prepared by the Dutch general intelligence service (AIVD), it describes radical Islam and examines how to meet its threat to Dutch society. Among the close to one million Dutch Muslims, about 95 percent are moderates. This implies that there are up to 50,000 potential radicals.  Read More »

French History and Current Attitudes to Israel

The first Israeli ambassador to Mauritania, Freddy Eytan, was stationed in Paris in the 1970s as an Israeli diplomat and in the 1980s as a journalist. He has observed French Middle Eastern policies over a long period.  Read More »

Israel and Europe: An Expanding Abyss?

Israel struggles to survive in a hostile environment, confronting Arab terrorism and demonization. It has to defend itself in many ways against asymmetric warfare. Nevertheless, it has succeeded in maintaining its democratic character. However, being made excessively vulnerable in the political domain by what should be sympathetic democracies causes it major damage.
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The EU and Israel: Radically Different Worldviews

"There is a radical difference in basic culture between the European Union and Israel. The EU is a new, unprecedented type of entity unless one goes back to the Roman or Holy Roman Empire. It eludes the ideas of nationalism, cultural uniqueness, and separate states. This results from two devastating wars that ruined Europe’s culture. Germany, a supposedly highly cultured European country, engaged in unprecedented crimes of which the Shoah was the absolute low."
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Confronting European-Israeli Misunderstandings

Dr. Johannes Gerster is the representative of the Adenauer Foundation in Israel and, as such, a privileged observer of Middle Eastern developments. He believes that Europeans and Israelis increasingly misunderstand each other: "The reasons are evident. The Israelis perceive themselves rightly as a minority in a large Arab world. They feel like small David versus big Goliath."
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Europe: Choosing Between Israel and The Arabs

Retired Israeli diplomat Avi Pazner says that the best way to gain clear insight into European-Israeli relations is by looking at watershed events over the past six decades. Pazner, a former ambassador in Rome and Paris, now chairs the United Jewish Appeal.
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Anti-Semitism and Hypocrisy in Dutch Society

Due to the relatively high crime rate among the Dutch Moroccan community and international Arab anti-Semitic hate propaganda, Jews are above average targets for their racists’ behavior. Easily recognizable Jews often try to hide their identity in public.  Read More »

THE IMPACT OF RECENT WATERSHED EVENTS ON AMERICAN JEWRY

The Palestinian uprising in 2000 created major new challenges to American Jewish leadership. Other watershed events such as September 11, 2001, and the war in Iraq also heavily influenced their environment.  Read More »

The Impact of Recent Watershed Events on American Jewry

Watershed events such as the Palestinian uprising in 2000 created major new challenges to the American Jewish leadership. Other mega-events such as September 11, 2001, and the war in Iraq also heavily influenced their environment. A key element of American Jewry’s changing mind-set relates to Israel.   Read More »

Anti-Semitism: Integral to European Culture

The European Union’s attitude toward anti-Semitism is double-handed. With one hand, by its discriminatory anti-Israeli declarations, the EU plays the role of arsonist, fanning the flames of anti-Semitism. With the other, it also serves as fireman by trying, at the same time, to quench the flames of classic religious and ethnic anti-Semitism. France is paradigmatic of this attitude.  Read More »

The Mahathir Affair: A Case Study

At the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit, Malaysian Prime Minister Mohamad Mahathir, the conference host, represented relations between Muslims and Jews as a worldwide frontal confrontation, offering some new examples of a "Jewish conspiracy." His words were broadly applauded.
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The Academic Boycott of Israel: A Review of the Five-Year UK Campaign to Defeat It

Since early 2002, a variety of attempts to boycott or discriminate against Israeli academic institutions and scholars have been undertaken in several Western countries. These include proposals such as the divestment of Israeli securities, ostracizing Israeli academics, refusal to publish or review Israeli academic papers, hampering the career of pro-Israeli scholars abroad, etc. Several of the campaigns have anti-Semitic motifs. Many actions are initiated by university lecturers.  Read More »

Countervailing Trends in American Jewry: An Interview with Norman Podhoretz

A trend toward increasing indifference in the Jewish community is being countered by a return to religious observance. The second Palestinian uprising in 2000 had a profound effect on American Jewish attitudes toward Israel. Most American Jews who care about Israel take their cue from the Israeli government, and in Israel, public opinion had also shifted, leading to the Labor party’s dramatic demise in the 2003 elections.  Read More »

The Academic Boycott Against Israel and How to Fight It

No. 12,  The first major academic boycott attempt against Israel was initiated last year by British Professors Steven and Hilary Rose, both Jews. They claimed Israeli academics were the only non-European Union member scholars eligible for its grants, and because […]  Read More »

The Academic Boycott Against Israel and How to Fight It

The first major academic boycott attempt against Israel was initiated last year by British Professors Steven and Hilary Rose, both Jews. They claimed Israeli academics were the only non-European Union member scholars eligible for its grants, and because of Israel’s attitude toward the Palestinians, these should be suspended.  Read More »

Environmental Change in the Messianic Era

Several classic and modern Jewish sources refer to the environmental change anticipated for the Messianic Age.   Read More »

Anti-Semitic Motifs in Anti-Israelism

When earlier this year Portuguese Nobel Prize winner Jose Saramago compared the situation in Ramallah to Auschwitz, he unwittingly staked his claim to become the archetype of the new anti-Semite. These defamers target the Jewish State rather than the religious or ethnic character of the Jews. In a single statement he utilized three classic anti-Semitic techniques: the dehumanization and demonization of Jews, the hijacking of Jewish symbols, and the use of such symbols against the Jews.  Read More »

Europe’s Bias: From the Holocaust’s Aftermath to Today’s Anti-Semitism II

A further way to enlarge one’s perspective on post-war attitudes toward the Jews is by analyzing events in individual countries. Since it will take a long time for overviews to become available, the best one can do in the interim is to consider some important issues as well as telling episodes in specific countries. These may then give a stimulus for further research by scholars who study other countries. Hereinafter, a series of such vignettes are presented. They provide, by necessity, an impressionistic picture and can be extended to further cases as well as to other countries not mentioned below. Each country must be assessed individually. As none is typical for the broader picture, no single country can be used as a paradigm. Yet the following brief observations indicate potential directions for further research.  Read More »

Europe’s Bias: From the Holocaust’s Aftermath to Today’s Anti-Semitism

An intensified defamation campaign against Israel and world Jewry has been taking place during the last two years. Various European governments and media play an important role in it. The moral aspects of post-war European attitudes toward the Jews have as yet been poorly analyzed. Their study within an integrated framework is becoming an urgent Jewish public affairs issue. As so little field research has been done much can be learned by looking at a mosaic of vignettes of individual countries such as France, Austria, Poland, the Baltic and Scandinavian countries, Switzerland and the Vatican. The paradigm of The Netherlands is discussed in more detail. This essay illustrates how part of the infrastructure for Europe’s current discriminatory attitudes toward Israel and the Jews started to be laid immediately after the war.  Read More »

Europe’s Bias: From the Holocaust’s Aftermath to Today’s Anti-Semitism – Part II

An intensified defamation campaign against Israel and world Jewry has been taking place during the last two years. Various European governments and media play an important role in it. The moral aspects of post-war European attitudes toward the Jews have as yet been poorly analyzed. Their study within an in-tegrated framework is becoming an urgent Jewish public affairs issue. As so little field research has been done much can be learned by looking at a mosaic of vignettes of individual countries.  Read More »

Europe’s Bias: From the Holocaust’s Aftermath to Today’s Anti-Semitism – Part I

An intensified defamation campaign against Israel and world Jewry has been taking place during the last two years. Various European governments and media play an important role in it. The moral aspects of post-war European attitudes toward the Jews have as yet been poorly analyzed. Their study within an in-tegrated framework is becoming an urgent Jewish public affairs issue. As so little field research has been done much can be learned by looking at a mosaic of vignettes of individual countries.  Read More »

Europe’s Moral Attitudes toward the Holocaust in Light of the Current Defamation of Israel

The moral aspects of Western attitudes toward the Jews and the Holocaust since World War II have not yet been analyzed systematically. However, the current campaign of hatred against Israel and the Jewish people — unprecedented since the end of the war — recalls many elements of the prewar decades. Yet it is too easy to generalize and describe this as one more outburst of the ancient illness of anti-Semitism.
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The Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) and the Environment

In the Western world, there is growing interest in the attitude of organized religion toward the environment.  Read More »

What Can Israel Do in the Global Disorder?

In Israel, ongoing contingency planning in the military, political, economic, and information fields is particularly essential now, especially in light of the structural global changes that may occur after the September 11th terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Such evaluations are done elsewhere for other reasons, such as by stock market analysts, and for those who draw accurate operating conclusions the rewards are very significant.  Read More »

The Failure of UN Forces in Srebrenica

In the UN safe area of Srebrenica, 6-8,000 Bosnian Moslems were murdered in July 1995 by the Bosnian Serbs, making it the largest civilian massacre in Europe since the Holocaust. The United Nations leaders, those of their peace-keeping forces, and the Dutch government had known for some time that the enclave was not defensible and had not taken adequate protective measures.  Read More »

Jewish Environmental Studies: A New Field

Jewish environmental studies do not yet exist as an academic field. There are no chairs or regular university courses in this discipline.  Read More »

Apocalyptic Fears Now; Unforseen Risks Tomorrow: Israel’s Poorly Predicted Future

After seven years of the peace process, catastrophic remarks about the end of the State of Israel are much more frequent than they were before the Oslo agreements. Judaism has a long tradition of religious apocalyptic thought; in the secular end-of-days fantasies of the last few months, however, no salvation is offered the community.   Read More »

Israel’s Major Economic Challenge: Closing the Gap in the Field of Business Economics

Why is it that Israel’s per capita GNP still lags substantially behind that of the leading countries of the world? Why is it likely to take decades for the Israeli economy to catch up? This is while the Israeli papers are full of news about very promising high-tech start-ups, and we even hear occasionally about payments of billions of dollars by major foreign firms to acquire Israeli businesses which were founded a few years ago and have at most several hundred employees.  Read More »

Jewish War Claims in the Netherlands: A Case Study

There is probably a greater discrepancy between the benign image and the harsh reality of Dutch wartime and postwar behavior than for any other country. An analysis of the Holocaust as sets issue and its background in The Netherlands can be relevant in a much larger European context in view of its multiple finan cial, political, historical, cultural, psychological, social, educational, and moral implications.
  Read More »

Jewish War Claims in The Netherlands: A Case Study

There is probably a greater discrepancy between the benign image and the harsh reality of Dutch wartime and postwar behavior than for any other country. An analysis of the Holocaust assets issue and its background in The Netherlands can be relevant in a much larger European context in view of its multiple financial, political, historical, cultural, psychological, social, educational, and moral implications.  Read More »

Investigating Much, Paying Little: The Dutch Government and the Holocaust Asset Inquiries

Discussing the repayment of holocaust victims, and release of bank accounts held by the Dutch government.  Read More »

The Intellectual World of Daniel Elazar

In memoriam of Daniel Elazar, an article on Jewish thought, continuation, and the impact of his work.  Read More »

Neo-Paganism in the Public Square and its Relevance to Judaism

In today’s fragmented society a large number of religious and secular neo-pagan expressions have emerged and are gathering strength. An increased interest in nature is a central element in many of its manifestations. Expressions of this attitude are found among neo-pagan believers, neo-Nazis and some extreme environmentalist currents.   Read More »

Wartime and Postwar Dutch Attitudes Toward the Jews: Myth and Truth

The myth that the great majority of the Dutch people had a highly positive attitude toward the Jews during World War II, identified with their suffering, and took risks to help them has gradually been unmasked in The Netherlands itself over the past decades.  Read More »

Neo-Paganism in the Public Square and Its Relevance to Judaism

In today’s fragmented society a large number of religious and secular neo-pagan expressions have emerged and are gathering strength. An increased interest in nature is a central element in many of its manifestations. Expressions of this attitude are found among neo-pagan believers, neo-Nazis and some extreme environmentalist currents.  Read More »

Neo-Paganism in the Public Square and its Relevance to Judaism

Spiritual and secular aspects of paganism, Jewish environmentalism, and the long struggle of monotheism are discussed.  Read More »

The Italian Stage

Israel’s New Future – Interviews

A series of interviews with Israeli experts and thinkers on important facets of the country’s future. It deals with likely changes, and those considered critical to the country’s development.  Read More »

Can Israel Ever Trust Europe?

Italy: Present and Future

The Israeli Paradigm for a Capitalist Soviet Union