25 August 2011 3 Comments

More Passion!

British Prime Minister David Cameron recently invited Tracey Emin, a purveyor of work which is shit even by the standards of contemporary art, to produce something – they probably call it “an installation” – for Number 10, Downing Street. Emin, who won the Turner Prize for exhibiting her own used-condom-strewn bed some years ago, is […]

2 February 2011 2 Comments

Omar Yussef predicted Cairo and Tunis

If you’ve been wondering why the people of Tunisia and Egypt have risen up against their dictators and why it caught Washington with pants down, it’s because you didn’t read THE FOURTH ASSASSIN, the latest of my Palestinian crime novels. In THE FOURTH ASSASSIN, which was published exactly a year ago, my Palestinian sleuth Omar […]

20 January 2011 0 Comments

Ehud Barak’s ‘filthy’ move

When Ehud Barak announced his plan Monday to split from Israel’s Labor Party and form a new parliamentary faction built entirely around himself, the defense minister displayed his usual combination of keen strategic thinking and craven self-interest. Barak’s stated logic is this: He wants to stay in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rightist coalition because he […]

1 August 2010 1 Comment

With democracy like this, who needs dictators?

JERUSALEM — Israelis like to point out that theirs is the only democracy in a Middle East otherwise dominated by repressive regimes. Given the performance of legislators in the parliamentary session that just ended here, you might be forgiven for asking: with democracy like this, who needs dictators? The Knesset, Israel’s parliament, broke up last […]

13 May 2010 0 Comments

Cameron can’t solve English i.d. crisis

I was at Oxford University at the same time as Britain’s new prime minister. But while I spent all my free time at a famous old pub opposite the historic Bodleian Library with a pint of Guinness in the company of some old Irish porters, I never saw David Cameron there. Which makes me doubt […]

10 March 2010 0 Comments

Political suicide of a peace-loving party

The Israeli party of conscience dissolves, and with it a rare leftist voice in a rightist country. (I posted this on GlobalPost) TEL AVIV — Israel’s politics is in a mess. How do I know? The party that stands most firmly for peace talks, environmentalism, liberal education, social justice, separation of religion and state, women’s […]

11 February 2010 1 Comment

Jerusalem Zoo: Penguins before pols

Here’s a whimsical video explaining why the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo is a better place from which to observe the Palestinian-Israeli conflict than a Gaza refugee camp or an Israeli military base. Seriously. And yet not.

15 January 2010 1 Comment

Writer is pro-Palestinian and pro-Israeli

The best thing about moving from journalism to fiction writing is that people show you more respect. As a journalist covering a contentious issue like the Israel-Palestinian conflict, I was often subject to rather nasty verbal attacks during public speaking engagements. For a partisan of either side, I seemed a fine target for their generalized […]