Columnists

Time to rethink the Tanach?

By Miriam Shaviv, March 8, 2012

How much of the Tanach is literally true?

This was the focus of a talk at the London School of Jewish Studies last week. The panel - Menachem Leibtag, Shmuel Klitsner and Jonathan Bailey, all leading American-Israeli modern Orthodox scholars - was in agreement. The Torah is God-given, but not all the stories necessarily happened exactly as written.

More..

If Auschwitz was in Hampshire

By Jonathan Freedland, March 1, 2012

The shock comes in the very first line.

More..

Ken is only ever on his own side

By Geoffrey Alderman, March 1, 2012

I've spent a lifetime studying politicians. I remain fascinated by the way in which those who practise the political arts are able to justify the unjustifiable, and in so doing can appear to turn hypocrisy into a virtue. The deeds and misdeeds of the political classes long ago ceased to shock me.

More..

Pantomime cases against Israelis make a mockery of international justice

By Oliver Kamm, February 24, 2012

There is a concerted effort by Israel's adversaries to try to delegitimise it by using the rhetoric rather than the substance of international law. It is tempting to ignore such an obviously tendentious and malevolent campaign.

More..

Wrong to shred Fred's Honour

By Geoffrey Alderman, February 23, 2012

I am not an economist. I do not know whether the current crisis from which this country is suffering really is the fault of the banking fraternity rather than (as some of my economist friends insist) an inevitable phase of an equally predictable economic "cycle".

More..

Religion is no cure, but it helps

By David Aaronovitch, February 23, 2012

News of the Bideford prayers ruling reached me in foreign parts, and provoked a regression. It got more pronounced when the other parts of the establishment - the atheist professor, the former archbishop, the Queen (apparently) and the papers joined the debate.

More..

Why is Gove so partial to CST?

By Geoffrey Alderman, February 16, 2012

At first glance, the recent spat between the Guardian and the Community Security Trust seems just a storm in a teacup. At the end of January, the Guardian's Rob Evans ran a poorly researched story about Education Secretary Michael Gove, who has for several years been a member of the CST's advisory board.

More..

Middle Britain's amoral drift

By Melanie Phillips, February 16, 2012

An invitation to appear as a Question Time panellist always sees your columnist dusting off her tin helmet, not to say donning full body armour and making her last will and testament.

Its audiences have been known to be less than universally friendly, and never more so than when Israel crops up.

More..

This banker baiting worries me

By Daniel Finkelstein, February 9, 2012

Let me try something out on you. It may turn out you don't feel as I do. But I have a hunch that more of you will share my uneasiness than won't. It's about Fred Goodwin. In fact, it's about the whole banker thing.

We Jews may be more likely to perceive that the BBC is biased against Israel but, on common-or-garden political issues, we feel pretty much like our non-Jewish neighbours.

More..

A new dawn for the Federation

February 9, 2012

I was born into the bosom of the Federation of Synagogues, and have grown up under its beneficent eye. My maternal grand- and great-grandparents were among its founders (or at least the founders of shtibls that formed themselves into a federation more than a century ago).

More..