Moment

Articles from Vol. 36, No. 2, March-April

A Cautionary Tale: Marty Peretz's Monochromatic Support for Israel and His Penchant for Making Anti-Arab Remarks Have Led Him into a Political and Philosophical Foxhole
I've written frequently in these pages about the damage to the character of American Jewry when the commitment to defending Israel leads us to view all of the problems of Jews or Israel through the exclusive prism of persecution. To those who doubt...
Anti-Muslim Discrimination in Post 9/11 America
Muslims have replaced Jews as targets of discrimination During the 1940s and 1950s, some Jewish scientists were stripped of their security clearances, causing them to lose their jobs or be downgraded to lower-security projects. One of the most famous...
Bruno's Great Escape
I first encountered the work of Bruno Schulz in the early '90s, a little more than half a century after his death. After a post-collegiate year in Prague, I had moved to New York because it seemed like the only logical place for an aspiring writer...
Debra Granik, Director of Winter's Bone
Nobody was more surprised when independent film director Debra Granik was nominated for an Academy Award than Debra Granik. Her film Winter's Bone made waves in independent circles before picking up four Oscar nods, including Best Picture. It follows...
Doctor Evil, DDS, SS: The Perfect Nazi: Uncovering My Grandfather's Secret Past
The Perfect Nazi: Uncovering My Grandfather's Secret Past By Martin Davidson G. P. Putnam's Sons 2010, $26.95, pp. 384 A few years ago, a Berlin orthodontist and part-time historian named Michael Kohn wrote a Ph.D. thesis that examined...
Drowning in His Body: Modigliani: A Life
Modigliani: A Life By Meryle Secrest Alfred A. Knopf 2011, $35, pp. 400 Amedeo Modigliani is surely one of the most popular--and least understood--modern painters. Crowds lined up around the block for a 2004 retrospective, "Modigliani:...
From Rafah to Taba: An Adventure through Israel's Wild West along the Israel-Egypt Border: T.E. Lawrence Once Described the Isolated, Volatile, Corrupt, Beautiful and Seductive Badlands That Stretch from the Gaza Strip to the Gulf of Aqaba as a "Naked Desert, under the Indifferent Heaven"
A small rise marks the spot where Israel, Egypt and Hamas-controlled Gaza meet, seven miles from the Mediterranean. This is where the infamous patrol road between Gaza and Egypt, known as the Philadelphi Corridor, ends and the border between Israel...
From Russia, with Love-And Baggage: The Free World
The Free World By David Bezmozgis Farrar, Straus, Giroux 2011, $26, pp. 354 To readers who follow the new crop of talented, Russian-raised writers, David Bezmozgis is best known as the author of lucid, beautifully crafted stories about...
From the Editor
Nearly three years ago, I met a 90-year-old woman from Cleveland named Eva Rosenberg who told me her story--and that of her late husband Milton Rosenberg. In 1950, one month after Julius Rosenberg was arrested for spying for the Soviet Union, Eva's...
Jewess Power
In a 1980 Saturday Night Live skit, the late Gilda Radner, decked out in gold necklaces and wide sunglasses, sashays in front of flashing cameras at a photo shoot. She shows off her fire engine-red fingernails and purple jeans embroidered with a Star...
Lebanon vs. Israel: A Delicious Culinary War
The Lebanese counterattack on Israel was carefully planned, precisely organized and ruthlessly executed by an army of 300. The mission: Unseat Israel as the hummus champion of the world. On May 8, 2010, 300 Lebanese chefs armed with state-of-the-art...
Mirusenka Moja
Her mother called her Mirenka. To me she was Mirka, but the times she cried in my arms, she'd be my Mirusenka, Mirusenka moja. Mirka was four years old when Pani, the missus, hired me as housekeeper. It wasn't love from the start. I never had children...
Of Jews and Scapegoats: For the Soul of France: Culture Wars in the Age of Dreyfus
For the Soul of France: Culture Wars in the Age of Dreyfus By Frederick Brown Alfred A. Knopf 2011, $28.95, pp. 304 This seems to be the moment of rediscovery for the Dreyfus Affair, with numerous new books in English devoted wholly or...
Should Jews Pay Taxes?
Independent The Hebrew word for "tax," both ancient and modern, is mahs and is first mentioned in Exodus 1:11, where the Torah recounts how Pharaoh assigned "taskmasters" over the Hebrew slaves in order "to oppress them." For "task" you can also...
Ten Great Jewish Poets
Gertrude Stein (1874-1946) Stein not only coined the term "Lost Generation" but became one of its foremost figures. Although her Jewish identity was notoriously confused, entangled and largely ignored in her own writings, a number of scholars have...
The Joys of Yiddish
ACROSS 1 Depp title role of 1997 7 Use a paper towel on 13 Billboard displays 16 Monkey with a doglike muzzle 17 Targets of college fund drives 18 Pair 19 Memorable "Jerry Maguire" catchphrase? 21 Bad spelling? 22 Place for...
The Muslims' "Christian Problem": Today, There Are Many Muslims Who Believe in Peaceful and Even Cordial Coexistence with Christians and Jews. but Such Tolerant Views Are Far from Universal
In one of his many magnificent books, Middle East scholar Bernard Lewis notes that in 641 C.E., the Caliph Umar "decreed that Jews and Christians should be removed from all but the southern and eastern fringes of Arabia, in fulfillment of an injunction...
The Other Rosenbergs: They Had the Wrong Name at the Wrong Place at the Wrong Time an Investigation into Discrimination against Jews Who Worked for the U.S. Army Corps at Fort Monmouth, NJ in the Wake of Julius Rosenberg's Arrest
It was September 14, 1950, and the American hunt for communist infiltrators was at its peak. A little more than a year before, the Soviet Union had detonated its first atom bomb, which was built using information supplied by spies. Two months earlier,...
The Unlikely Emissary Houda Nonoo: The Jewish Female Ambassador from Bahrain Represents Her Country's Pluralism as Sectarian Uprisings Challenge the Kingdom
As the first Jewish ambassador posted abroad by an Arab country and the first female ambassador to the United States from Bahrain, Houda Ezra Ebrahim Nonoo is accustomed to defying expectations. When she hosted her first Bahraini independence day event...
Whither Israel's Grand Strategies? Mainstream Sunni Arab Countries-Traditionally Adversaries of Israel-Are Now Its Potential Allies in the Struggle against Iran and Militant Islam
One of the signal characteristics of Israel's security thinking in the country's early decades was its development of grand strategies--concepts for coordinating the nation's resources toward attaining its existential objectives in war and peace. It...
Women Get the Front Seat: Israel's High Court Agreed That Gender Separation on Israeli Public Buses Violated the Principles of Equality, Individual Rights and Freedom of Religion
In 2004, I embarked on what I thought was going to be a simple 30-minute bus ride from the center of Jerusalem to my home in Ramot. Instead, it became a dramatic seven-year journey sparked by a humiliating and threatening verbal battering from an ultra-Orthodox...