The Central Political Role of German Left Actors in the Campaign to Replace the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism

By: Gerald M. Steinberg 

(Journal of Contemporary Antisemitism, Vol. 5.2, Fall 2022, DOI: 10.26613/jca/5.2.116)

This paper examines the evidence suggesting core involvement of, and leadership from, the German radical left in the process of composing and marketing the Jerusalem Declaration on Antisemitism (JDA), with the objective of weakening or replacing the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s 2016 Working Definition of Antisemitism (IHRA-WDA).2 The main German actors include officials from the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung (RLS), which is the political foundation arm of Die Linke, its NGO allies, and from the Center for Research on Antisemitism (ZfA) at the Berlin Technical University. The analysis traces the history of instrumentalizing antisemitism and antizionism in pursuit of internal ideological and political agendas and objectives, including support for the BDS movement. This context serves as the foundation for explaining the specific actions, including publication of an “expert paper” in 2019 that articulated the goal of replacing the IHRA-WDA with an alternative definition, and presented much of the content that became the JDA.

Keywords: IHRA; antisemitism definition; Germany, antizionism; Die Linke; Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung



By: Neil Rogachevsky and Dov Zigler

(Cambridge University Press, 2022, Online ISBN:9781009090841, 300 pages)

Israel's Declaration of Independence brings to life the debates and decisions at the founding of the state of Israel. Through a presentation of the drafts of Israel's Declaration of Independence in English for the first time, Neil Rogachevsky and Dov Zigler shed new light on the dilemmas of politics, diplomacy, and values faced by Israel's leaders as they charted the path to independence and composed what became modern Israel's most important political text. The stakes began with war, state-building, strategy, and great power politics, and ascended to matters of high principle: freedom, liberty, sovereignty, rights, and religion. Using fast-paced narration of the meetings of Israel's leadership in April and May 1948, this volume tells the astonishing story of the drafting of Israel's Declaration of Independence, enriching and reframing the understanding of Israel's founding and its ideas - and tracing its legacy.



By: Amelia Rosenberg Weinreb

(Palgrave Macmillan, 2022, ISBN: 978-3-031-16914-4, ISBN: 978-3-031-16915-1 282 pages)

This book presents pedagogical strategies for today’s diverse Israel Studies classrooms. It offers Israel-specific innovations for online teaching, tested methods for organizing global virtual exchanges that uplift marginalized voices in Israel, including Palestinian voices, and an intellectual and political overview of the field. Informed by the author’s experiences in the classroom and principles shared with her by fellow instructors, the book provides a guide to developing an Israel Studies syllabus or integrating Israel Studies units into an existing curriculum.


Currents: Briefs on Contemporary Israel
Issue 6, Fall 2022
Populism in Power: Is the Leader Bound by the People? “Illegal Infiltrators” and Netanyahu's Rule
By: Gayil Talshir

Populist leaders emphasize the bond between the leader and his people: but is the leader bonded by the people? The paper deciphers the phenomenon of ‘populism in power’ through the case study of Netanyahu’s policy change regarding the illegal immigrants from Africa to Israel. ‘Populism in power’ pertains to leaders who took their once-upon-a-time moderate rightwing ruling parties to the nationalist-populist end: Trump, Netanyahu, Orbán and others. Netanyahu, often portrayed as ‘the magician,’ sought to maintain a distinction between virtual incitement against ‘others’ (Arabs, immigrants, and refugees as well as ‘the elites’) during election campaigns and a responsible leadership when in power. What brought him to abolish his own policy-outline devised with the UN to transfer half of the illegal immigrants to other democratic countries in return for provisional work permit for the other half, leading to all 100% remaining in Israel without a legal status? This case demonstrates that once a leader unleashes the populist genie, bottling it again is not an option: when in power, populism is not merely a rhetoric game, and the public would not let the leader back down from his populist policies. Who is the people, what is Netanyahu’s leadership style, and how does ‘direct representation’ work for populist leaders in power are critically examined.

Read Currents Issue 6:

The McGill-Queens - Azrieli Institute Book Series in Israel Studies is pleased to announce our new publication!

Fictions of Gender: Women, Femininity, Feminism and the Zionist Imagination by Orian Zakai

Press Editor: Richard Ratzlaff, Editor, McGill-Queen’s University Press 

Series Editor: Csaba Nikolenyi, Director, Azrieli Institute of Israel Studies



By: Moshe Maoz

(Liverpool University Press, 2022, ISBN-10: ‎1789761999, ISBN-13: 978-1789761993 140 pages)

In 2011, the diplomatic and expert consensus was that Bashar al-Asad's regime would fail, causing Syria to disintegrate into several ethnic enclaves or mini-states. A decade later and Bashar is still in control, having defeated the rebels and gained the support of Russia. The years of internal warfare have brought about changes in the spectrum of parties involved in the Syrian state, and the final outcome is inevitably going to be shaped by geo-politics. The Alawi minority still in large measure controls the Sunni-Muslim (Arab) majority. The other players are a gallery of ever changing allegiances: ISIS, Jabhat al-Nusra, and many other radical Islamic groups; the Muslim Kurdish and Christian Arab communities; as well as Shii Lebanese Hizballah. External horizon players are Iran; Sunni Turkey and Saudi Arabia; Jewish Israel; the United States and Russia. This study aims to analyze the agendas, actions, and interrelations of these various actors from 2011 until the present. It will discuss their ongoing politics and assess forthcoming developments. Both Iran and Russia continue to support Bashar, but compete for political, military, and economic influence. The US has greatly reduced involvement, keeping only 900 troops in northeastern Syria, to protect its Kurdish allies and fight against ISIS. Turkey still occupies parts of northern Syria, with the aim of eliminating the Kurdish forces. Syrian and Russian military attempts to conquer this area continue sporadically. The Israeli air force has attacked Iranian and Hizballah positions with the tacit approval of Russia. However, Russias war on Ukraine in February 2022 may result in restricting Israeli interdictions and instead enhance cooperation with Tehran in order to counter the US and NATO. Both Russia and Iran have been incapable of reconstructing the massively destroyed Syrian infrastructure; the US and Europe are reluctant to contribute due to Bashars continued Alawi minority-based autocratic and corrupt rule.



By: Elad Ben-Dror

(Routledge, November 2022, ISBN 9781032059631, 284 Pages)

This book provides the first comprehensive account of the work of the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP), constituted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1947 to study the situation in Palestine at the end of the British Mandate and make recommendations about its political future.

Utilizing a wealth of archival documentation, some of it never before studied, Elad Ben-Dror explores the various aspects of UNSCOP’s activity to understand how it came to determine the fate of the country’s inhabitants. The book analyzes the methods and motivations of the various members, with special attention given to the personal viewpoint of each member of the committee. Through this Ben-Dror shows that the partition recommendation emerged after a long process of study, debate, and compromise that was very much dependent on the characters and circumstances of the individual members of the committee.

UNSCOP and the Arab-Israeli Conflict will be a key text in understanding the role of UNSCOP in shaping the modern Middle East. It will be appropriate for scholars and students of political science, Palestine and Israeli history, the Arab-Israeli conflict, the UN and diplomacy, and conflict resolution.



By: Uri Bialer 

(Ben Gurion Research Institute 2022)

Available in Hebrew - click here for more

Uri Bialer lays a foundation for understanding the principal aspects of Israeli foreign policy from the early days of the state's existence to the Oslo Accords. He presents a synthetic reading of sources, many of which are recently declassified official documents, to cover Israeli foreign policy over a broad chronological expanse. Bialer focuses on the objectives of Israel's foreign policy and its actualization, especially as it concerned immigration policy, oil resources, and the procurement of armaments. In addition to identifying important state actors, Bialer highlights the many figures who had no defined diplomatic roles but were influential in establishing foreign policy goals. He shows how foreign policy was essential to the political, economic, and social well-being of the state and how it helped to deal with Israel's most intractable problem, the resolution of the conflict with Arab states and the Palestinians.



By: Ron Kronish

(L.E.A.R.H.N. Peacebuilding Publications, 2022; ISBN: 978-1-7344700-7-9, ISBN-13 : ‎978-1734470093 318 pages)

*Available on Amazon Kindle and paperback

This new book traces the lives of Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabs in Israel and Palestine who have dedicated their lives to building peaceful relations among the two peoples as well as between individual people who seek to live in peace and harmony with one another. These people have acted courageously and consistently in their work for peace. In this book, the author profiles the lives, thoughts, feelings and actions of six important peacebuilders -- men and women, secular and religious, 3 Jewish Israelis: Rabbi Michael Melchior, Professor Galia Golan and Mrs. Hadassah Froman; and 3 Palestinian Arabs: Professor Mohammed Dajani, Ms. Huda Abuarquob, and Bishop Munib Younan. The reader learns about their visions for peace and their activities to bring their ideals to fruition in the real world of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Too many people have given up on peace. In contrast, the people in this book persevere for peace, thus keeping a flicker of hope alive, not only for Israelis and Palestinians who live in the same land, but also for people everywhere who continue to yearn for a peace agreement to be reached in the region.



By: Tony Shaw and Giora Goodman

(Columbia University Press, 2022, ISBN Paperback: 9780231183413; ISBN Hardcover: 9780231183406, ISBN e-book: 9780231544924, 368 pages)

From Frank Sinatra’s early pro-Zionist rallying to Steven Spielberg’s present-day peacemaking, Hollywood has long enjoyed a “special relationship” with Israel. This book offers a groundbreaking account of this relationship, both on and off the screen. Tony Shaw and Giora Goodman investigate the many ways in which Hollywood’s moguls, directors, and actors have supported or challenged Israel for more than seven decades. They explore the complex story of Israel’s relationship with American Jewry and illuminate how media and soft power have shaped the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Shaw and Goodman draw on a vast range of archival sources to demonstrate how show business has played a pivotal role in crafting the U.S.-Israel alliance. They probe the influence of Israeli diplomacy on Hollywood’s output and lobbying activities, but also highlight the limits of ideological devotion in high-risk entertainment industries. The book details the political involvement with Israel—and Palestine—of household names such as Eddie Cantor, Kirk Douglas, Elizabeth Taylor, Barbra Streisand, Vanessa Redgrave, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Robert De Niro, and Natalie Portman. It also spotlights the role of key behind-the-scenes players like Dore Schary, Arthur Krim, Arnon Milchan, and Haim Saban.

Bringing the story up to the moment, Shaw and Goodman contend that the Hollywood-Israel relationship might now be at a turning point. Shedding new light on the political power that images and celebrity can wield, Hollywood and Israel shows the world’s entertainment capital to be an important player in international affairs.


Tony Shaw is professor of contemporary history at the University of Hertfordshire.

Giora Goodman, a historian, chairs the Department of Multidisciplinary Studies at Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee.



By: Gabriel Schwake

(Cambridge University Press, 2022, ISBN online: 9781009071246, 278 pages)

Concealed within the walls of settlements along the Green-Line, the border between Israel and the occupied West-Bank, is a complex history of territoriality, privatisation and multifaceted class dynamics. Since the late 1970s, the state aimed to expand the heavily populated coastal area eastwards into the occupied Palestinian territories, granting favoured groups of individuals, developers and entrepreneurs the ability to influence the formation of built space as a means to continuously develop and settle national frontiers. As these settlements developed, they became a physical manifestation of the relationship between the political interest to control space and the ability to form it. Telling a socio-political and economic story from an architectural and urban history perspective, Gabriel Schwake demonstrates how this production of space can be seen not only as a cultural phenomenon, but also as one that is deeply entangled with geopolitical agendas.


Part-Time Instructor in Modern Hebrew / Colorado State University

The Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at Colorado State University is seeking applications for a part-time instructor for new language and culture classes in Hebrew. Applicants will be considered on a rolling basis, and we would like to fill the position quickly. We would encourage potential applicants to apply as soon as possible.

Courses aim to advance student proficiency in speaking, listening, reading, and writing, while introducing students to contemporary Israeli and Jewish diaspora culture, Israeli identity, and current events in the Middle East.

While long-term goals include the development of a program, the course offerings are still limited. So we are looking to hire an instructor to teach first-year Hebrew (LHEB 100-101), but we are hoping to supplement those courses by offering the instructor courses in other areas.

For this reason, candidates who are able to teach another one of the languages offered by our department––American Sign Language, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Russian, and Spanish––are especially welcome as are candidates who would be able to offer English-language courses on the Holocaust, Israeli-Palestinian or Jewish cultures in Film, world cinema, and others.

Interested candidates may apply to the Department's instructor pool

For more information on qualifications, requirements, and terms, see the instructor pool advertisement. For any additional questions, please write to

This effort is initiated in collaboration with the CSU Advisory Council on Jewish Inclusion and the College of Liberal Arts.


The Friends of the Arava Institute: Summer 2023 Internship (Paid)

Are you passionate about the environment, international relations, or international education? Do you just want to build skills in nonprofits, communications, and fundraising? This 20–24 hour/week internship has flexibility as to days and hours and is a great opportunity for students or recent graduates with an interest in any of the above. The intern will collaborate closely with the development, communications, and university relations teams. Preference for Boston-area candidates who have easy access to the Newton Center, MA office, but we will consider fully remote candidates.

Organizational Background

The Friends of the Arava Institute (FAI) is the US arm of the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies, a leading environmental research and academic institute in the Middle East. Located in Israel’s Arava Valley, the Arava Institute houses academic programs, research centers and regional cooperation programs focusing on a range of environmental challenges. The Arava Institute is dedicated to the concept that nature knows no borders. With a student body composed of Jordanians, Palestinians, Israelis, and students from around the world, the Arava Institute offers an exceptional opportunity to learn from leading scientists, form friendships, and develop skills to help solve today’s most pressing environmental concerns. FAI’s goal is to ensure the Institute's continued success and growth through US student recruitment, effective fundraising, and educational campaigns.

Core Responsibilities

● Update alumni database with current contact information, primarily using Google, social media, and other search engines
● Alumni outreach to update current biographical information
● Conduct donor research using iWave, Google, and social media

● Assist in editing documents for the Development office
● Other duties in support of the alumni relations, development, and communications teams


● Excellent communication skills
● Experience or interest in data entry
● Creative and diligent problem-solving skills
● Excellent social media, writing, and editing skills
● Very organized with attention to detail
● Proficient with Microsoft Office Suite and able to learn new technology quickly ● Able to work independently

Compensation is $18 per hour.

To apply, please send cover letter and resume to with the subject line “Intern Application - [Your full name]”


Seeking Israeli Faculty on Sabbatical to Teach About Israel in the United States

Spend the 2024-2025 academic year teaching about modern Israel and expanding your networks in the United States. The Israel Institute’s Visiting Faculty Program funds Israeli academics to teach in person about modern Israel at top universities in the United States.

Visiting Faculty must teach at least one full-term, three-credit, undergraduate-level course about modern Israel in each semester/quarter of their placement.

Visiting Faculty placements are open to tenured, tenure-track, and full-time contract faculty and professors emeriti from Israeli colleges and universities. All applicants must possess a strong command of English and be able to teach about modern Israel. Women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

To learn more and apply, please visit our website and sign up to receive grant announcements. 

Application Deadline for the 24-25 academic year: September 7, 2023 

The Israel Institute is an independent, nonpartisan, and non-advocacy 501(c)(3) organization that advances the rigorous study of modern Israel in partnership with leading universities around the world. Contact Dr. Erika Falk ( with questions about our programs.


Multi-Year Postdoctoral Fellowships for Israeli Scholars

Research, network, and teach in the United States. Institute Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowships support Israeli academics, who have the interest and ability to teach about modern Israel, at colleges and universities in the United States. Over the course of an academic year, Fellows teach at least four courses and organize at least four events about modern Israel.

Our Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowship has been updated to support more scholars and to expand the number of institutions hosting Institute-supported faculty. Top applicants will now be given the opportunity to establish funded Teaching Fellowships at American schools of their choice (with Institute approval). Women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

To learn more and apply, please visit our website and sign up to receive grant announcements.

Deadline to apply for the 24-25 academic year: September 14, 2023

The Israel Institute is an independent, nonpartisan, and non-advocacy 501(c)(3) organization that advances the rigorous study of modern Israel in partnership with leading universities around the world. Contact Dr. Erika Falk ( with questions about our programs.



University of Kansas Search: 2 Year Visiting Assistant Professor of Israel Studies

The University of Kansas seeks a Teaching Fellow/Visiting Assistant Professor of Israel Studies in the Jewish Studies Program to begin on 8/18/2023. This position is a full-time, academic-year appointment for two years.


1) Ph.D. in a field related to Modern Israel Studies;

2) Expertise in Israeli politics, history, culture, and/or society; and

3) Teaching experience.

The position is supported by a grant from the Israel Institute.

Application review begins 17-Feb-2023. For more information and to apply, follow this link:


UCLA Israel Studies Distinguished Fellowship Opportunity

Link here:


Postdoctoral Joint Fellowship in Israel and Middle Eastern Studies at American University

The Center for Israel Studies at American University invites applications for the inaugural Alan and Amy Meltzer Postdoctoral Fellowship, for the 2023-2024 academic year (August 28, 2023-May 31, 2024).

American University’s Center for Israel Studies offers an Academic Year postdoctoral fellowship to support the work of exceptional scholars at an early stage of their careers in Israel and Middle Eastern Studies. The postdoctoral fellow will teach one class per Academic Year while in residence. The fellow is expected to be present on campus during the full Academic Year and participate actively in AU programs, including our annual conference. The fields of research are unlimited, and can include areas such as political science, international relations, business, economics, history, sociology, religious studies, theater, literature, and arts. The deadline for Postdoctoral Fellow applications is March 24, 2023.

Review of applications will begin on March 24, 2023 and will continue until the position is filled.

Established in 1998, American University’s Center for Israel Studies (CIS) was the first university center in the United States dedicated to the academic study of modern Israel.  A pioneer in its field, CIS takes a multidisciplinary and pluralistic approach to examine modern Israel’s history, its diverse society and culture, and its complex geopolitical challenges. CIS offers a variety of courses, student trips, faculty-led discussions, and regular public programming featuring Israeli scholars, writers and artists.

American University is a private institution within easy reach of the many centers of government, business, research, and the arts located within the nation's capital. Our more than 12,000 students are globally diverse, and the university's mission is carried out by 848 full-time faculty and nearly 1,700 full¬ time staff. 94 percent of full-time faculty hold the highest degree in their field and among our adjunct faculty are policy makers, diplomats, journalists, artists, writers, scientists and business leaders. For more information about American University, visit

The fellow should have academic expertise in the study of Israel and another country in the Middle East.

Applicants must have satisfactorily completed all requirements for the Ph.D. degree by July 2023.

Application Instructions
They should submit a letter of interest, a curriculum vitae, a dissertation or book abstract, a proposal for a class, a one-page outline for a research project, and a one-page description of events or programs that they would be interested in organizing at AU as well as two letters of reference.Please submit applications via Interfolio. Questions about the application process can be addressed to Laura Cutler at

For more information and to apply please visit



Full and partial fellowships supporting doctoral students whose research focuses on Israel. Candidates must be accepted into Brandeis University graduate school programs of Anthropology, History, Literature, Middle East Studies, Near Eastern & Judaic Studies, Politics or Sociology. Competitive living stipend with generous health care benefits. Renewable for up to five years. Deadlines vary by department. Learn more at



The Azrieli Institute of Israel Studies at Concordia University is a multi-disciplinary research centre that brings together students, faculty and researchers who are dedicated to the study of Israel in all its facets.

In an effort to promote faculty-based projects, stimulate research and teaching, and contribute to the study of the state of Israel, locally, nationally and internationally, the Institute is offering financial support in the form of grants and scholarships in the following categories:

Visiting Researcher:

The Institute welcomes applications for short-term or sabbatical Visiting Researcher positions. Research stipends are available.

Post-doctoral fellowships:

Applicants with a completed PhD can apply for a post-doctoral fellowship.

The deadline to apply for these grants vary.  For details please visit:


UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies: Fifth Annual Undergraduate Scholars Conference in Israel Studies

The UCLA Y&S Nazarian Center for Israel Studies will host its fifth annual Undergraduate Scholars Conference in Israel Studies online on June 22, 2023. Students are invited to present their work on any topic related to modern Israel at the conference. This virtual conference is open to undergraduate students (bachelor’s degree programs) from any campus in the United States and abroad.

Students selected to showcase their work at the conference will be invited to give a 10 to 12 minute presentation of their work, and participate in a Q&A session moderated by scholars affiliated with the UCLA Nazarian Center. This is a wonderful opportunity for students to gain valuable experience, sharpen their presentation skills and add an impressive line on their CV (particularly in anticipation of applying for graduate school). The conference will also provide students with an opportunity to receive feedback on their work from the Nazarian Center’s graduate students and faculty.

Students are welcome to base their presentation on a research paper written for your class. Applicants who have written longer texts like dissertations or theses may select a chapter or portion of their work within the previously stated page range for consideration.

To be eligible for consideration, students must be enrolled undergraduate students or have graduated no longer than six months before the conference date and commit to participating in the conference. Applicants should submit abstracts of approximately 100-250 words no later than May 26. Applicants will be notified if they have been accepted to the conference by June 2. Final papers must be submitted by June 16. For more information, please visit the event/submission page posted on our website:

Monetary awards will be given to the student who submits the best paper, as well as to the runner-up. The winner of the best paper award will receive $350 USD, and the runner-up will receive $150 USD.


The Elections in Israel - 2022

Dear Colleague, Following another election within less than four years, we have begun preparations for the publication of The Elections in Israel – 2022, the 17th volume in the series. We hope to publish again simultaneously volumes in English and in Hebrew as soon as is feasible after the elections. We invite scholars who study Israeli politics and society to submit articles. These may be written in either English or Hebrew, and the author will be responsible for the translation.

Articles will be reviewed in the usual manner of refereed journals in order to maintain the highest academic standards. If you wish to discuss your proposal before you submit the article, feel free to contact us. The planned books will be similar to previous ones in The Elections in Israel series. Use the conventions that appear in the 2015 and 2019-2021 volumes regarding style, footnoting, references, spelling, tables, and figures.

The deadline for submission of articles is July 30, 2023.

Gideon Rahat Israel Democracy Institute Jerusalem 9104602

Or: Department of Political Science The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Jerusalem 9190501

Noam Gidron Department of Political Science The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Jerusalem 9190501

Michal Shamir The School of Political Science, Government and International Affairs Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 6139001 


Inaugural Lecture of Olof Palme Professorship by Raphael Cohen-Almagor

Ethics, Justice, Peace and Social Responsibility

The Centre for Advanced Middle Eastern Studies, the Department of Political Science and the Swedish Research Council have the pleasure to invite you to the inaugural lecture by Raphael Cohen-Almagor as holder of the 2023 Olof Palme visiting professorship.

Welcome Address

Karin Aggestam, Director, Centre for Advanced Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University

Per Mickwitz, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lund University

Stefan Svallfors, Secretary General, Swedish Research Council

Olof Palme Inaugural Lecture

Raphael Cohen-Almagor, Centre for Advanced Middle Eastern Studies and Department of Political Science, Lund University

The Olof Palme professorship is awarded by the Swedish Research Council to an internationally prominent researcher focused on topics important to the pursuit of peace in a broad context within the areas of social sciences, humanities, theology and science of law.

Monday, 6 March, 2023 at 15.15
Venue: Edens hörsal, Eden, Paradisgatan 5, Lund


The Libitzky Lecture on Israel and the Great Powers: The Case of Israel and Turkey

Thursday, Feb 16th, 6:00 – 7:30 PM Great Room, Bancroft Hotel


After a turbulent decade, Turkish-Israeli ties are now undergoing a revival. What are the implications of this reconciliation for stability in the region and what are the effects of global developments on the ties between these two regional powers? Please join Soner Cagaptay, director of the Turkish Research Program at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, and Ron Hassner, the Helen Diller Family Chair in Israel Studies at UC Berkeley, for a conversation about Israel’s relationship with Turkey. This is the third in a series of talks examining Israel’s relationships with global powers.


The Azrieli Institute of Israel Studies, Concordia University

Registration link: click here


AIS Statements

AIS Statement on the War in Ukraine

The Association for Israel Studies Executive joins in this expression of solidarity with the people of Ukraine. We are deeply saddened by the senseless loss of life, and condemn the wanton aggression and indiscriminate killing being perpetrated on Ukrainian civilians. The AIS Executive stands in solidarity with Ukrainian colleagues in all fields of research, and with the Ukrainian people in their courageous resistance to this ongoing violence. 

We would also like to share the European Association for Israel Studies' statement concerning the war in Ukraine.


Executive Board and Academic Council of the European Association of Israel Studies Statement on Russia’s Aggression against Ukraine

We strongly condemn Russia's aggression which started in 2014 with the annexation of Crimea and escalated on February 24, 2022 with the massive invasion of Ukraine. This war is destroying peace in Europe and leading to the destruction of the existing political, economic, and socio-cultural relations globally.

We are witnessing a large-scale humanitarian catastrophe that hasn’t been experienced in Europe for decades. Over four million refugees from Ukraine have crossed into neighbouring countries, half of them are children. Many more are internally displaced.

We express our full support for Ukraine's independence and its unquestionable right to self-determination as a sovereign nation. We call on the international community to support in all possible ways the Ukrainian state and the Ukrainian people in order to defend their country, to protect the Ukrainian population and to exert pressure on Russia to withdraw its troops from the Ukrainian territory and to compensate for the damages inflicted to Ukraine.

We call on the Russian government to stop this illegal war against the Ukrainian people. We are appalled by the reports from Bucha and other places from which the Russian army has now withdrawn and call on the International Court of Justice to investigate Russian war crimes in Ukraine and to take action against all offenders.

We also deeply appreciate the stand of those courageous Russians including many academics who do not identify with their government's actions against Ukraine – an invasion which has led to atrocities. We hold in high regard all those who do not remain silent. The example of Andrei Sakharov proves how important it is to speak out. The role of dissidents – and in particular the voices of academics throughout Russian history – in challenging the official narrative holds a treasured place for us in our hearts.   

In addition, the European Association of Israel Studies actively seeks means of support for all Ukrainian scholars.

We stand with Ukraine!

Executive Board and Academic Council

of the European Association of Israel Studies



European Association of Israel Studies

Institute of the Middle and Far East,

Jagiellonian University in Kraków Oleandry st. 2a 30-063, Krakow, Poland


AIS Statement about University of Washington at Seattle

The Association for Israel Studies views with concern the controversy over the Israel Studies program at the University of Washington at Seattle. We have refrained up until now from making statements or joining in petitions alleging injuries to the academic freedom of faculty in order to ascertain the facts of the incident.

Based on the information we have received from the university administration, Professor Liora Halperin’s position is secure, as is a chair that she will continue to hold, along with considerable resources for her and the Israel Studies Center.

The University reports: “Prof. Halperin will be the holder of a new endowed chair in Jewish Studies created with the funds that remain in a new endowment. This chair will have the same salary and research benefits as her previous endowed chair. Prof. Halperin’s tenured professorship is in place and fully supported. The implication in the claim that ‘the university stripped Halperin of her chair position and halted programming related to Israel studies’ is thus not accurate.”

The fact is that although $5,000,000 has been returned to the donor, through accrued interest, university matching funds of $2.5 million and other investments that were not returned nearly $6 million remains in an endowment and is dedicated for use of Israel Studies.

The reasons for the return of the endowment have been subject to various interpretations. What is clear is that the donor felt aggrieved and charged that understandings and promises were not fulfilled, and therefore sought written clarifications. It appears that Prof. Halperin’s signature on a petition was only one part of a larger, continuing disagreement over the contract.

The AIS trusts that this unfortunate incident will serve as a cautionary episode in which greater clarity will be manifest in future arrangements among the parties involved in creating and advancing Israel Studies.

It is to be emphasized that the incident at Seattle is exceptional. The field of Israel Studies is growing in importance, and there are numerous centers, chairs, and programs in Israel Studies, headed by scholars holding a wide range of views, that flourish, adhere to the highest academic standards, and contribute to the satisfaction of faculty, students, and donors and the communities they serve. We are hopeful that this will continue to be the case at the University of Washington and in the field generally. The Association for Israel Studies will continue to support academic freedom, freedom of expression and the scholarship and scholars advancing knowledge of modern Israel.

Arieh Saposnik, President


AIS Statement on the Closing of the Israel’s National Library

The Association for Israel Studies (AIS)—the leading international body that brings together scholars of Israeli history, society, politics and culture from around the world—is deeply concerned about the impending closure of Israel’s National Library and the decision to send 300 employees home on unpaid leave due to a lack of funding.

In addition to its invaluable holdings of over 5,000,000 volumes that serve scholars and the broad public, it is also home to rare books and parchments, as well as archival collections of inestimable value to the work of studying Israeli society, culture and history. Given this, the National Library is a vital asset to the AIS and to the scholars of Israel from around the world whom it represents.

A national library—the principal treasure trove of a society’s cultural creativity and of a civilization’s artifacts—is a vital asset to any state. Democratic countries throughout the world have recognized this by making sure their libraries have continued to function even in the current crisis.

Israel’s National Library is an expression of the greatest aspirations of the country’s founders, for whom the very purpose of a sovereign state was the ability to freely create a sovereign culture. The National Library is a foundation-stone of that culture, and a record of the many cultures that have together come to constitute Israeli culture. We are extremely concerned that this national treasure might be closed.

Even prior to the current crisis, the National Library received substantially less state funding than equivalent institutions in the free world. We implore the Ministries of Education and Treasury to act immediately to provide the funding needed to allow the continued operation of the National Library—so vital an asset for scholars of Israel.


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