Columnists

Great wounds of the Great War

By Geoffrey Alderman, January 10, 2014

Later this year, the world’s media will preoccupy us with material related to the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War — the “Great War” — which was triggered, so it is said, by the assassination, in the Bosnian capital, Sarajevo, of the heir to the Habsburg throne, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, and his wife, Sophie.

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Praying with a purpose

By Daniel Finkelstein, January 10, 2014

"What do you think will happen if you pray?” asked my friend. It was New Year’s Eve, and a left-wing, but religious, fellow journalist had just kindly wished me everything that I prayed for in 2014. In fact he had gone further. He had wished all his followers on social media all that they prayed for.

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Why myth-makers still fight the battle of Masada

By Martin Bright, January 9, 2014

I have spent the past few weeks reading about Masada.

I won’t need to remind readers of this paper of the significance of the Jewish people’s last stand against the Roman occupiers following the destruction of the temple. Nor will I need to tell them of the importance of the story to the construction of Zionist identity or, indeed, the state of Israel.

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Where's a Russian oligarch when you need one?

By Peter Rosengard, January 3, 2014

London’s flooded with Russian oligarchs — but can you find an oligarch when you want one? No, you can’t. I’ve been looking for one for over two years —hoping to find even a little oligarch to whom I can sell a billion-dollar life insurance policy: the perfect gift for the oligarch who has everything.

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Plan for settlers that's naive and dumb

By Geoffrey Alderman, January 3, 2014

Dr Alexander Yakobson teaches ancient history at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. His specialities are democracy, politics and electioneering in the late Roman Republic. In common with other Israeli academics on the left he has, however, sought to broaden his areas of specialism in the light of contemporary peace-making (so-called) in the Middle East.

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Clemency for Jonathan Pollard? No

By Oliver Kamm, January 2, 2014

A child born today will grow up with absolutely no conception of privacy at all,” said Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, in his “Alternative Christmas Message” on Channel 4.

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Better fascist than gay in football

By Martin Bright, January 2, 2014

The premiership footballer Nicolas Anelka has identified himself as a fascist sympathiser. It really is as simple as that.

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Don't panic, but prejudice remains

By Geoffrey Alderman, December 24, 2013

On the face of it, the report recently published by the Community Security Trust on Antisemitic Discourse in Britain in 2012 makes for reassuring reading. It stresses that “explicit antisemitism against Jews per se, simply for their being Jewish, is rare in British public life and within mainstream political media discourse.”

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Fill the Void is a universal story of love and power

By Melanie Phillips, December 24, 2013

There are many in the wider Jewish world who view the strictly Orthodox on a scale ranging from disdain and condescension to outright loathing.

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Why Netanyahu was wrong over Mandela

By Jonathan Freedland, December 24, 2013

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.

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