Issue 38

May 2016
The Tower Magazine

The Case for Israeli Sovereignty on the Golan

From every perspective—legal, historical, and common-sense—Israel's claim to permanent sovereignty in the territories captured in 1967 from the country formerly known as Syria is airtight. EYLON ASLAN-LEVY explains.

continue reading >> An Israeli outpost on the Golan Heights, overlooking the Syrian border. Photo: Mendy Hechtman / Flash90

The King of Holocaust Denial

Mahmoud Abbas has inspired the Palestinians for more than a decade. But as EDY COHEN shows, his worldview was built on a radically distorted view of history. What could this mean for the prospects of peace?

continue reading >> Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud speaks at the opening ceremony of a medical center in Ramallah, August 8, 2010. Photo: Issam Rimawi / Flash90

The Religion that the Iranian Mullahs Fear Most

Around the world, millions of Zoroastrians call Iran their homeland and see Islam an imposition by Arab usurpers. As ZENOBIA RAVJI shows, their dream may yet shape the region's future.

continue reading >> Zoroastrians pray at the Pir-e Sabz shrine in Yazd, Iran.

Righteous Among the Nations, At Home in Israel

NATHAN JEFFAY explores the lives of Europeans who risked their lives to save Jews in the Holocaust, and then made their own lives in the Jewish state.

continue reading >> Andrea Bartali, the son of the late Italian champion cyclist and Righteous Among the Nations Gino Bartali, who risked his life to rescue Jews during the Holocaust, visits Yad Vashem, October 10, 2013. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Flash90

Totalitarian Terror in Tehran

ANNIKA HERNROTH-ROTHSTEIN traveled to Iran, where she discovered a government apparatus dedicated to instilling fear in every citizen, even more insidious than that of the Soviet Union.

continue reading >> Photo: Annika Hernroth-Rothstein

PHOTOS: Eilat, City of Sun and Endless Fun

Tower photographer AVIRAM VALDMAN took his camera to Israel's deep south, where, surrounded by an intimidating landscape, tourists go to forget their troubles.

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Issue 37

April 2016
The Tower Magazine

Inside the IDF's Super-Secret Brain Trust

What do Israel's advanced tunnel detection, missile defense, and cyberwarfare capabilities all have in common? JASON GEWIRTZ explores the elite Talpiot unit, a collection of the smartest young minds on earth.

continue reading >> A graduation ceremony for Unit 8200, the IDF’s decryption and signal intelligence unit that shares many connections to Talpiot.

How the Iran Entente Caused the Syria Crisis

KYLE ORTON explores how the greatest humanitarian catastrophe of our time has been enabled every step of the way by American policy.

continue reading >> A boy walks through the ruins of Aleppo. Photo: BBC News / YouTube

He Saved Gabby Giffords. Can He Save Arizona?

ANTHONY BERTEAUX profiles a rising star in the Democratic party: Daniel Hernandez, Jr., a gay Latino activist running for the Arizona state legislature, whose progressive agenda is as deeply ingrained as his support for Israel.

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The Holocaust, the Left, and the Return of Hate

In Europe and around the world, the political far-Left is legitimizing outright anti-Semitism. But as JAMIE PALMER shows, there's a long and awful history at play.

continue reading >> Buchenwald survivors arrive in Haifa only to be arrested by the British, 1945. Photo: Wikimedia

Why Are Hamas' Terror Tunnels Collapsing?

DAN FEFERMAN offers a beginner's guide to Hamas' intricate network of tunnels, and looks into rumors that Israel might be behind the repeated failure of the scariest weapons in the terrorists' arsenal.

continue reading >> A Palestinian man is lowered into a smuggling tunnel in Rafah near the border with Egypt, September 10, 2013. Photo: Wissam Nassar / Flash90

Photos: Purim Like No Place on Earth

While Jews around the world were popping poppy-packed hamentaschen and grinding their groggers, Israelis were up to something else entirely. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes a look.

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Issue 36

March 2016
The Tower Magazine

Will Palestinian Hate Stop the Western Wall Deal?

After decades of struggle, Jewish movements have struck a deal on the Kotel. But as EYLON ASLAN-LEVY explains, any attempt to implement it risks a wave of violence that could drive a stake into the heart of the progressive Jewish ethos.

continue reading >> Worshipers pray amid snowfall at the Western Wall. Photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90

Israel's Big Gift to the U.S. Economy

AARON MENENBERG crunches the numbers of Israel's dramatic contribution to American prosperity--something the boycotters don't want you to know.

continue reading >> Shipping containers at the Haifa port. Photo: Yaakov Naumi / Flash90

Syria: The Hell Next Door

Turkey, Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United States, Lebanon, and Iran have all gotten stuck in the horrors of what was once called "Syria." JONATHAN SPYER shows us how Israel has managed to navigate the global maelstrom to its north.

continue reading >> Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) and Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (L) look out into Syria during a visit to the northern border, August 18, 2015. Photo: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO / Flash90

Europe Needs a New Approach to Freedom of Speech

LIAM HOARE asks whether Western Europe's laws governing restricted speech aren't fanning the flames of the very extremism they were meant to control.

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An Ancient Ethnic Cleansing Remembered

A new exhibit reveals the world of Jewish life in the Land of Israel in the second century, and the Roman tyrant who tried to destroy it. SARA TOTH STUB takes us there.

continue reading >> Bronze heads of Hadrian, 117–138 CE. Photo: Elie Posner / The Israel Museum

PHOTOS: The Monumental Rise of Tel Aviv

AVIRAM VALDMAN offers breathtaking shots of the White City as it rises to the skies.

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Issue 35

February 2016
The Tower Magazine

In the Safe Spaces on Campus, No Jews Allowed

ANTHONY BERTEAUX takes a look at how campus groups meant to give students a sense of belonging have instead become incubators of anti-Semitism and exclusion.

continue reading >> UCLA students gathered to stand in solidarity with black students on the University of Missouri campus. UCLA faculty and the Afrikan Student Union led the rally in support of the protests occurring on other campuses and to bring awareness to issues impacting UCLA's black community. Photo: UCLA Daily Bruin / YouTube

How NGOs Became a Weapon Against Israel

Far-Left NGOs, secretly funded by the EU, have changed Israeli discourse and fueled the fire of anti-Israel hate. As GERALD STEINBERG writes, the latest headlines are only the beginning of a blow-up years in the making.

continue reading >> Photo: Maksym Yemelyanov / 123rf

Why Do Many Journalists Choose Sides in a Conflict?

When ZENOBIA RAVJI came to the Middle East to cover the human side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, she discovered that many of her colleagues didn't care all that much about the truth.

continue reading >> Photojournalists photograph a protest in Tel Aviv against a controversial agreement reached over the past few months between the government and large energy companies over natural gas production, November 14, 2015. Photo: Tomer Neuberg / Flash90

Martin Luther King, Hijacked by Academic Radicals

A. JAY ADLER explores the fantasy world of far-Left academia, where Palestinians are the iconic victim, Jews the cosmic oppressor, and Martin Luther King, Jr. rolls in his grave.

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Surfing for Peace, One Wave at a Time

The ocean knows no borders, and the waves speak only truth. BENJAMIN T. DECKER met with a small group of Israelis, Gazans, and others working to bring understanding through surfing.

continue reading >> Frenchman Nicholas Klotz of Surfing 4 Peace rides the waves. Photo: Aviram Valdman / The Tower

PHOTOS: The Beautiful, Blazing Southern Desert

Covering half of Israel's territory, the Negev is home to some of the most extraordinary natural and human finds. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us there.

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Issue 34

January 2016
The Tower Magazine

The Looming Global Nuclear Weapons Crisis

EMILY B. LANDAU explores one of the least-discussed, and scariest, implications of the Iran Deal: The possibility that the whole global mechanism for stopping the spread of nuclear arms might soon unravel.

continue reading >> From left: Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, and Secretary of State John Kerry defend the nuclear deal before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Photo: U.S. Department of State / Wikimedia

BDS Has a New Target: Your Kids

An anti-Israel curriculum is making inroads in Jewish schools across America. MAX SAMAROV & AMANDA BOTFELD offer a chilling critique.

continue reading >> Inside the Linn Schoolhouse in Marion, Ohio. Photo: Todd Petrie / flickr

The EU's Israel Problem Goes Far Beyond Labels

STEVEN J. ROSEN explores how the European bureaucracy is trying to slowly shackle the Jewish state, leading to a de facto boycott over time.

continue reading >> The Berlaymont, the headquarters of the European Commission. Photo: Glyn Lowe / flickr

A New Dawn for Argentina?

Since assuming the presidency, Mauricio Macri has signaled a change of direction for the country, beginning with a rejection of its decades-long collusion with Iran and Venezuela. EAMONN MACDONAUGH asks: Will he follow through?

continue reading >> Mauricio Macri is swarmed by reporters, July 2015. Photo: Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires / flickr

Germany's Jewish Past Trumps Its Jewish Present

SHANY MOR visited two synagogues in Germany, and discovered two radically different approaches to Jewish identity in the shadow of the Holocaust. Which will win out?

continue reading >> The Mainz Synagogue. Photo: Manuel Herz Architects / Wikimedia

PHOTOS: The Ultimate Refuge

For such a small country, Israel enjoys an astonishing diversity of species and climates. AVIRAM VALDMAN visited three of the country's leading wildlife refuges—and came face to face with nature's stark truths.

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Issue 33

December 2015
The Tower Magazine

To Save Itself, Liberal Europe Must Find Itself

JAMES BLOODWORTH explores the new challenge facing political leaders, in Great Britain and across Europe, in the wake of the Paris terror attacks.

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Israel Takes On Its Home-Grown Jihadists

For years Israel's Islamic Movement Northern Branch, now banned, has been accused of incitement, terror support, and ties to Hamas. RAFFA ABU TAREEF explores the history of the movement and its felonious leader, Raed Salah.

continue reading >> Sheikh Raed Salah, the leader of the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement , marches with his supporters outside the Jerusalem District Court, October 27, 2015. Salah recieved a sentence of eleven months in prison for incitement to violence and racism against Jews. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Flash90

Samantha, Powerless?

America's ambassador to the UN has a long record of advocating for humanitarian intervention to stop genocide and war crimes. But as MICHAEL J. TOTTEN shows, the crisis in Syria has become a case study in American impotence, or worse.

continue reading >> Samantha Power speaks at the 2008 TED Conference. Photo: Red Maxwell / flickr

Iran Is More Deeply Tied to ISIS Than You Think

BENJAMIN T. DECKER explores the story of Imad Mughniyeh, and explodes the myth that empowering Iran is the way to defeat ISIS.

continue reading >> A member of Islamic State carries the group’s flag. Photo: VOA / Wikimedia

Could Houellebecq's World Really Happen?

Michel Houellebecq's dystopian novel "Submission" was published on the day of the Charlie Hebdo attacks. As BENJAMIN KERSTEIN writes, the book offers a chilling look at how Europe could be lost--and what can be done to prevent it.

continue reading >> Michel Houellebecq. Photo: Evgeny Davydov / Wikimedia

PHOTOS: Israel's Newest National Holiday

AVIRAM VALDMAN takes his camera to the observance of Sigd, a unique holiday for the Ethiopian Jewish community, celebrating the divine revelation of Moses.

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Issue 32

November 2015
The Tower Magazine

The Grand Mufti's Genocidal Children

How did Arab opposition to a Jewish state become so absolute and violent? EDY COHEN looks at Haj Amin Al-Husseini, one of the central figures in creating a conflict for the ages.

continue reading >> Haj Amin al-Husseini greets Bosnian Waffen-SS volunteers with a Nazi salute, November 1943. Photo: Bundesarchiv / Wikimedia

How a Family Became a Propaganda Machine

With the help of Amnesty International, the Tamimi clan of Nabi Saleh has been sold to the world as the epitome of non-violent protest. But as PETRA MARQUARDT-BIGMAN shows, the reality is far more disturbing.

continue reading >> Bassem and Nariman Tamimi. Photo: Alexander Beunder / YouTube

A Peacemaker's Problem with the President

If you thought Michael Oren's memoir was a problem for the President's Israel legacy, wait'll you read what Dennis Ross has to say. SHANY MOR reports.

continue reading >> Dennis Ross attends the Israeli Presidential Conference at the International Conference Centre in Jerusalem May 14, 2008. Photo by Olivier Fitoussi /FLASH90

Humanitarian Heroes in a Wrathful World

The Jewish state has translated its traumatic experiences of war into a potent ability to assist with catastrophes. NATHAN JEFFAY follows the group IsraAID to Europe during the Syrian refugee crisis.

continue reading >> IsraAID staff Malek Abu-Gharara and Tsofit Goren care for a refugee. Photo: Nathan Jeffay / The Tower

The Violence is Endless, the Hope Never Fades

ASSAF DUDAI takes us into the heart of the Israeli experience in the face of more violence and dashed hopes—and finds the optimism where we least expect it.

continue reading >> Workers sit in an alleyway at the nearly-empty Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem, October 15, 2015. Photo: Nati Shohat / Flash90

PHOTOS: Crazy Autumn Energies of Tel Aviv

The turn from summer to fall creates a striking visual moment in a city where ancient and modern collide. AVIRAM VALDMAN brought his camera.

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Issue 31

October 2015
The Tower Magazine

How Israel Is Solving the Global Water Crisis

The world is running out of usable water, and from California to the Congo, governments are turning to Israel for help. DAVID HAZONY spoke with Seth M. Siegel, whose new book tells the incredible story.

continue reading >> Israelis play in a fountain on a hot summer day in Jerusalem, May 27, 2015. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Flash90

The Palestinian Endgame?

He has refused to negotiate with Israel, praised acts of terror, and now declared his intention to ignore Palestinian commitments. BEN COHEN & BENJAMIN KERSTEIN ask: What is Mahmoud Abbas' plan?

continue reading >> Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks at the United Nations General Assembly, September 30, 2015. Photo: Mark Langfan / YouTube

Western Europe's Most Powerful Anti-Zionist

Jeremy Corbyn has defended 9/11 conspiracy theorists, appeared on Iranian state TV, and called Hamas and Hezbollah his "friends." LIAM HOARE examines the new leader of the British Labour Party.

continue reading >> Jeremy Corbyn speaks at a campaign event in West London, August 17, 2015. Photo: Steve Eason / flickr

South Africa Has a Boycott Problem

In the land where apartheid reigned, one student leader realized that attacking Israel made no sense—and paid a heavy price. ANNIKA HERNROTH-ROTHSTEIN takes us there.

continue reading >> The University of Johannesburg Palestine Solidarity Forum hosts Israeli historian Ilan Pappe and South African Minister of Higher Education Blade Nzimande for a talk on how boycotts can be used to oppose “Israeli Apartheid.” Photo: Meraj Chhaya / flickr

The Curious Question of Russian Anti-Semitism

Violence targeting Jews has declined in Russia, but there's trouble beneath the surface. MIRIAM POLLOCK went to Saint Petersburg to hear what young people are saying when they think no one is listening.

continue reading >> Russian figurines on display. Photo: Miriam Pollock / The Tower

PHOTOS: The Etrogim of the Maghreb

The etrog is integral to celebrating the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. And the world's best etrogs are grown in Morocco. AVIRAM VALDMAN traveled to Marrakesh, the Atlas Mountains, and the Sahara Desert in search of the perfect citron.

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Issue 30

September 2015
The Tower Magazine

Global Anti-Semitism Now Has a Leader

BEN COHEN explores the horrific theology of hate expounded by Ali Khamenei, and the implications of a rising Iran.

continue reading >> Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Photo:

Why Does Iran Keep Taking American Hostages?

It's hard to a remember a time when Tehran wasn't holding U.S. citizens on trumped-up charges. BRIDGET JOHNSON explores the Islamic Republic's policy of holding American feet to the fire.

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The Knesset's Female Pride

Today there are more women in Israel's parliament than ever before. YARDENA SCHWARTZ interviews them about the progress made, and the distance yet to go.

continue reading >> Members of Knesset (left to right) Orly Levi-Abekasis (Yisrael Beiteinu), Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid), Zehava Galon (Meretz), and Gila Gamliel (Likud) deliberate during a committee meeting, December 24, 2013. Photo: Flash90

As U.S. Power Wanes, Japan Reboots Its Military

American foreign policy has had unintended consequences around the world. ANTHONY BERTEAUX explores the resurgence of military thinking in Japan—and shows that it's not just talk.

continue reading >> Japan Self-Defense Force infantry wearing helmets and camouflage. Photo: U.S. Department of Defense / Wikimedia

China's Deepening Interest in Israel

As its economic power rises and its strategic foundations have shifted underfoot, the Jewish state has developed an increasingly fruitful relationship with the most populous country on earth. ARYEH TEPPER takes us there.

continue reading >> Chinese vessels arrived in Haifa to celebrate 20 years of cooperation between the Israeli Navy and the Chinese Navy, August 13, 2012. Photo: Israel Defense Forces / flickr

PHOTOS: Procession of the Icon

While Christians around the Middle East are persecuted, in Israel they celebrate their ancient traditions in freedom. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us to one of the most stunning rituals in the churches of Jerusalem.

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Issue 29

August 2015
The Tower Magazine

The Democratic Party, on the Edge of the Abyss

As the White House goes full-court press on leading Democrats to support the Iran Deal, MARTIN PERETZ asks whether voters will ever trust the party again to safeguard national security.

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Iran Has Built an Army of Cyber-Proxies

Americans are starting to learn how vulnerable they are to cyber-attack. JORDAN BRUNNER explores how Iran, flush with new cash, could soon be in a position to bring a nightmare few can imagine.

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Will Yemen's Gays Survive the Houthis?

This Arab country had a thriving, if underground, LGBT community. But as BEN GLADSTONE shows, Iranian expansionism might mean its end.

continue reading >> Houthi fighters at a rally. Photo: Wochit News / YouTube

Why a Major U.S. Church Chose Hate over Peace

SHIRI MOSHE takes a look at the events that led the United Church of Christ to boycott the Jewish state.

continue reading >> A service at the United Church of Christ General Synod. Photo: United Church of Christ / flickr

It's All About Amba!

Want a real Mediterranean diet? JARED KAUFMAN gives us a taste of amba, the most important Israeli condiment you've never heard of.

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PHOTOS: Building a Railway to the Future

Israel's two great cities, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, are about to get a lot closer. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us to the building site of the new railway that will change the country forever.

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Issue 28

July 2015
The Tower Magazine

The Central Pillar of the Iran Deal Has a Big Flaw

If the emerging Iran deal is “not based on trust,” as John Kerry says, then it has to be based on the credible threat of reimposed sanctions. But as EMANUELE OTTOLENGHI explains, those threats are no longer credible.

continue reading >> A stack of 20,000 rial bills. Photo: Bastian / flickr

Alberto Nisman's Secret Recordings, Revealed

Before he was murdered, the Argentine prosecutor wiretapped over 40,000 phone calls. His one question: Did the Argentinian government conspire to cover up Iran's involvement in a terrorist attack? EAMONN MACDONAGH investigates.

continue reading >> Photo: Viktor Gmyria / 123RF

The Iran Talks: An Expert's Guide

The West is on the brink of a historic—some say catastrophic—nuclear deal with Iran. RAFAEL OFEK offers a quick primer on what they’re talking about.

continue reading >> U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry sits across from Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on June 30, 2015, in Vienna, Austria, before a one-on-one meeting amid negotiations about the future of Iran's nuclear program. Photo: U.S. Department of State / flickr

Tel Aviv's Nighttime Flying Creatures

Israel's most nocturnal city truly comes alive when the sun goes down, BENJAMIN KERSTEIN writes. The air is filled with the spray of the ocean, the scent of the fruit trees—and bats. Lots and lots of bats.

continue reading >> A bat flies along Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv. Photo: Zoharby / Wikimedia

Down and Out on the Temple Mount

For a thousand years it stood as the pinnacle of sanctity in Judaism, and for two thousand more as the focus of our dreams. So why, ANNIKA HERNROTH-ROTHSTEIN asks, can't a Jew even mumble a prayer there?

continue reading >> A Jewish man looks at the Dome of the Rock atop the Temple Mount. Photo: Sliman Khader / Flash90

PHOTOS: Prouder than Ever

As gays fight for acceptance across the Western world, AVIRAM VALDMAN shows how Tel Aviv takes pride to far greater lengths.

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Issue 27

June 2015
The Tower Magazine

When the IDF Invaded Kathmandu

Israel keeps ignoring the critics and sending its top doctors and rescuers to areas of disaster. YARDENA SCHWARTZ got a first-hand look at the people who are saving lives in Nepal.

continue reading >> The Israeli field hospital in Nepal. Photo: IDF / Flash90

For Some Arab States, Breaking Up Isn't Hard to Do

JONATHAN SPYER asks why it is that some Arab states, faced with collapsing support for the ruling regime, dissolve into civil war while others don't—and what this difference should mean for Western policymakers.

continue reading >> Two destroyed Syrian Army tanks sit in front of a mosque in Azaz, Syria, August 21, 2012. Photo: Christiaan Triebert / Wikimedia

Can Labor Ever Win Again?

It's been 16 years since Israel's Labor Party won an election. LIAM HOARE asks what has changed in Israel, and suggests that for the Left to win, it has to rediscover its founding principles.

continue reading >> Zionist Union party leader Isaac Herzog attends a conference with young Israelis at Hadassah College in Jerusalem, March 10, 2015. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Flash90

FIFA, the Palestinians, and the Future of World Football

While global soccer's top execs were dealing with a corruption scandal, the Palestinian Authority tried to hijack yet another international body for their own "anti-normalization" campaign. AIDEN PINK has the inside scoop.

continue reading >> Israeli national team defender Rami Gershon reacts to his team’s loss against Belgium in a European championship qualifying match March 31, 2015. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Flash90

A Sermon of Hate in the District of Columbia

SHIRI MOSHE visited a local Presbyterian service where congregants were called upon to boycott the Jewish state as a matter of faith.

continue reading >> The Sixth Presbyterian Church, DC. Photo: Farragutful / Wikimedia

PHOTOS: Rabbi Shimon's Pilgrims

In Israel's north, Mount Meron is the scene of an annual ritual drawing tens of thousands of Jews looking for divine inspiration. AVIRAM VALDMAN captured the moment.

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Issue 26

May 2015
The Tower Magazine

Yarmouk and the Failure of Palestine Solidarity

Over 100,000 Palestinians have been displaced or killed in a single refugee camp in Syria. BEN COHEN asks what happens to pro-Palestinian activists whenever Israel is not involved—and what it says about their motives.

continue reading >> Residents of the Yarmouk refugee camp line up for aid distributed by UNRWA, February 2014. Photo: Rami Al Sayyed / UNRWA / flickr

Life Gets Tough for Jews, Swedish Edition

Targeted for humiliation, prohibited from observing her religion in freedom, ANNIKA HERNROTH-ROTHSTEIN tried to draw attention to the plight of Sweden's small Orthodox Jewish community—and that's when the trouble really began.

continue reading >> People cross a snow-covered field on a winter day in Stockholm. Photo: Miriam Alster / Flash90

The Hijacking of the International Criminal Court

There are 3 kinds of UN bodies: Those that serve no purpose, those that are truly noble, and those that have been taken over by the anti-Israel movement. DAVID DAOUD takes a look at the ICC, on the brink.

continue reading >> The headquarters of the International Criminal Court in the Hague. Photo: ekenitr / flickr

The Man in the Middle

He has become Israel's most successful American-born public figure—and now has launched himself into the thick of Israeli politics. BENJAMIN KERSTEIN interviews Michael Oren, as he starts his first tour of duty in parliament.

continue reading >> Photo: Aviram Valdman / The Tower

Should American Jews Embrace the Evangelicals?

It should be a simple equation: Support for Israel is crucial to American Jews, and Evangelicals are the nation's most fervent supporters. TIFFANY GABBAY asks why the relationship still hasn't clicked, and what can be done.

continue reading >> Participants of a delegation of Evangelical motorcyclists from the United States pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, November 6, 2011. The organization Mission M25, consisting of Evangelical pastors and military veterans, ride through Israel on a nine-day motorcade on Harley Davidson motorbikes. Photo: Yossi Zamir / Flash 90

PHOTOS: Armenians in Jerusalem Remember

It has been a century since Turks massacred 90 percent of the Armenian minority in their country. A small group of refugees settled in the Holy Land. AVIRAM VALDMAN met their descendants as they marked the horrible centennial.

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Issue 25

April 2015
The Tower Magazine

Iran Has a Serious Human Rights Problem

A new UN report paints a scathing picture of Iran as one of the worst regimes on earth. So why is America engaging? BEN COHEN takes a look.

continue reading >> A woman walks near the Azadi Tower in Tehran. Photo: Morteza Bahmani / flickr

In Iraq, the U.S. and Iran Really Do Fight as Allies

American officials insist that despite fighting a hot war against the same enemy in the same place, the U.S. and Iran are not allies. MICHAEL PREGENT looks at the evidence.

continue reading >> Two EA-18G Growlers fly in formation above the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson, February 27, 2015. Carl Vinson is deployed in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations supporting Operation Inherent Resolve, which conducts airstrikes against ISIS targets in Iraq and Syria. Photo: MCS 2nd Class John Philip Wagner, Jr. / U.S. Navy / flickr

How We Lost Stanford University

Hidden intentions, deceptive tactics, aggressive radicalism, and above all, outside help—all these led the students at one of America's top universities to boycott Israel. MIRIAM POLLOCK '16 offers the anatomy of a defeat.

continue reading >> Stanford University on a rainy night. Photo: Peter Thoeny / flickr

Israel's LGBT Community Keeps Moving Forward

Pinkwashing was never a real thing. As CORINNE BERZON shows, progress for gays in Israel seems like an unstoppable force—and a symbol of hope.

continue reading >> LGBT rights activists protested during a speech by Israeli Minister of Economics and Jewish Home party leader Naftali Bennett at a conference in Tel Aviv, February 24, 2015. Photo: Tomer Neuberg / Flash90

What If Israeli-Palestinian Security Cooperation Stops?

As attention shifts back to the Palestinian problem, leaders mull the PLO's call to stop cooperating with the IDF on security--the central pillar of the relative calm in the region. NERI ZILBER games out the scenarios moving forward.

continue reading >> Palestinian men burn tires during clashes with Israeli border police at the Qalandiya checkpoint, between Jerusalem and Ramallah, late on July 24, 2014, following a massive march attended by 10,000 Palestinian protesters against Israel's military actions in the Gaza Strip. Photo: Issam Rimawi / Flash90

PHOTOS: This Is What Democracy Looks Like

There is only one place in the Middle East where freedom truly rings. AVIRAM VALDMAN shows us the Jewish State on election day 2015.

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Issue 24

March 2015
The Tower Magazine

More Biased than Goldstone? The UN Reports on Gaza

Even with its discredited chairman gone, the new UN report on the Gaza war will be every bit as biased. HILLEL NEUER shows how such reports are dictated far in advance--by strong-minded people you've never heard of.

continue reading >> HRC Secretariat and OHCHR Officials at Human Rights Council. Photo: Eric Bridiers

Meet the Proxies: How Iran Spreads Its Empire

In Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen, and elsewhere, Tehran has perfected the art of gradually conquering a country without replacing its flag. DAVID DAOUD explores the New Expansionism.

continue reading >> A mural in Tehran depicting Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and Iranian soldiers. Photo: Neil Hester / flickr

The Global Pogrom Can Be Stopped. Here's How

The Global Pogrom has taken lives, legitimized violence, and spread fear among Jews across Europe and beyond. But as BENJAMIN KERSTEIN shows, there is a great deal that can be done to roll it back.

continue reading >> French Prime Minister Manuel Valls at the funeral of French Jewish community leader Jean Kahn, August 20, 2013. Photo: Claude Truong-Ngoc / Wikimedia

Why Reform & Conservative Can't Get Israel Right

Leaders of Reform and Conservative Judaism in Israel tend to blame everyone but themselves for the movements' failure to take hold. LIAM HOARE suggests a fundamental shift in strategy.

continue reading >> Anat Hoffman of Women of the Wall prays at Robinson’s Arch outside the Western Wall. Photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90

Is Argentina Safe for Jews?

A murdered prosecutor, a dismissed indictment, collusion with Iran, and leaks of anti-Semitism at the highest levels—this is Argentina today, EAMONN MACDONAGH reports.

continue reading >> Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner speaks at the UN General Assembly, September 24, 2014. Photo: Presidencia de la Nación Argentina / Wikimedia

PHOTOS: Women of Valor and Steel

In the middle of the desert sits an IDF base where a unique, all-female unit works around the clock to train soldiers in high-intensity combat. Photographer AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us there.

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Issue 23

February 2015
The Tower Magazine

The U.S. Let Iran Take Over Iraq. Are Nukes Next?

When MICHAEL PREGENT served with U.S. Forces in Iraq, he never imagined he would be witness to one of the most bizarre foreign policy decisions in American history.

continue reading >> Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey answers a question at a press conference in the Pentagon, May 10, 2012. Photo: Glenn Fawcett / Department of Defense / Wikimedia

This Haredi Woman Wants Your Vote

Sick of being overlooked by Ultra-Orthodox political parties, a new movement could finally bring female Haredi representation to the Knesset. BETH KISSILEFF profiles Biz’chutan, which may spark a revolution in Israeli politics.

continue reading >> Ruth Colian. Photo: Aviram Valdman / The Tower

The Rise of the Iranian Empire

How did it happen that the world's greatest exporter of terrorism, which calls for death to the West, has now taken control of four other countries? DAVID DAOUD explores what may be the greatest foreign policy catastrophe of our time.

continue reading >> The Azadi Tower, Tehran. Photo: Christiaan Triebert / flickr

Charlie Hebdo and the Future of Europe

The terror attacks in Paris earlier this month led to a historic outpouring of support. But for those looking closely, the siege of the kosher supermarket was anything but a surprise. BENJAMIN KERSTEIN explains.

continue reading >> Over one million people, including world leaders, gathered in Paris on January 11, 2015, in tribute of the 17 victims following the shootings by Islamist gunmen at the offices of the satirical weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo, the killing of a police woman in Montrouge, and the Jewish hostages killed at a kosher supermarket at the Porte de Vincennes. Photo: Laurence Geai / Flash90

Why is Japan Warming to the Jewish State?

In the past few years, Israel and Japan have developed closer economic, political, and ideological ties. AARON MENENBERG analyzes a burgeoning relationship.

continue reading >> YAMATO, a Japanese drumming and acoustic instrument ensemble, performs at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Mount Scopus Amphitheatre, May 24th, 2012. Photo: Noam Moscowitz / Flash90

PHOTOS: In a Forest Dark and Deep

AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us to into the community of Havat Ma'on in the Judean Hills—an eerily peaceful setting overflowing with both political controversy and ancient resonance.

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Issue 22

January 2015
The Tower Magazine

North Korea and Iran Are Cyber-Warfare Buddies

Two rogue states with nuclear ambitions, a long and illicit partnership, and a history of cyber-attacks against American targets. CLAUDIA ROSETT investigates the ties that bind Tehran and Pyongyang.

continue reading >> Soldiers from the North Korean army stand watch over the Demilitarized Zone. Photo: Edward N. Johnson / U.S. Army / Wikimedia

Stop Freaking Out About the Jewish State Bill

A recent proposal to affirm equal rights for every citizen in Israel regardless of religion drove people bananas. DAVID DAOUD looks at the proposal on its merits, and wonders what all the fuss was really about.

continue reading >> The Knesset. Photo: Israel_photo_gallery / flickr

Propaganda Maps, Deconstructed

It's a common anti-Israel trope, illustrated in maps: Over the past century, perfidious Zionists have slowly and steadily taken land from the Palestinians. SHANY MOR takes apart the lie—and reveals the hate behind it.

continue reading >> An image of the board game Risk. Photo: Stephen Coles / flickr

Hope for Syria’s Refugees? This Woman Thinks So

The suffering of Syria's 8 million refugees has been largely overlooked. But a few small organizations—and some extraordinary people—are working behind the scenes to provide services and hope. BEN COHEN takes us there.

continue reading >> The Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan. Photo: B. Sokol / UNHCR / flickr

Christians in the Holy Land: Don't Call Us Arabs

Long part of Israel's Arab populace, Israel's Christians are reasserting their own unique identity - one that is deeply tied to the Jewish State of Israel. Meet the Arameans. ARYEH TEPPER takes us inside.

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PHOTOS: O Little Town of Bethlehem

Every year, thousands of Christians from around the world convene in Bethlehem to celebrate Christmas in the town of Jesus's birth. Photographer AVIRAM VALDMAN shows us the festivities.

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Issue 21

December 2014
The Tower Magazine

Goodbye Islamic State, Hello Islamic Republic?

The Obama administration’s latest approach to the Middle East may be its most dangerous yet, choosing terror-sponsor Iran over longtime Arab allies. DAVID DAOUD explains what's going on.

continue reading >> U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, ringed by security guards, speaks with Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird about the status of nuclear program negotiations with Iranian officials as he sits in a park at the scene of the talks, Vienna, Austria, on November 22, 2014. Photo: U.S. Department of State / flickr

How the Summer War Changed Israel's Soul

Operation Protective Edge had a profound effect on the Israeli psyche.
Disillusioned toward the prospects for peace and resigned to the world's lack of support, BENJAMIN KERSTEIN speaks for most Israelis by asking, "What's next?"

continue reading >> A Jewish woman prays at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City while holding an umbrella during heavy rainfall, November 16, 2014. Photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90

Wait, Iraq Is Now Iran?

Slowly but surely, forces tied to Iran have taken over the fight against the Islamic State—and are doing it with American air support. JONATHAN SPYER & AYMENN JAWAD AL-TAMIMI ask: At what cost?

continue reading >> Iraqi forces display vehicle and aircraft capabilities during the Iraqi Army Day celebration in the International Zone, Iraq, January 6, 2011. Photo: Daneille Hendrix / U.S. Army / Wikimedia

Gaza Is Not Northern Ireland, You Git

The Troubles and the Arab-Israeli conflict seem pretty similar with a cursory glance. But EAMONN MACDONAGH argues that comparing them only serves to excuse terrorism and obscure the real issues.

continue reading >> A British policeman buys lunch at Columbia Market, London. Photo: Jorge Royan / Wikimedia

Love and Song in the Shadow of War

Israeli music has long been profoundly shaped by its military history. From folk dancing to fusion rap, songs are suffused with a unique mix of cynicism and optimism, tragic loss and hope for the future. CORINNE BERZON shows us how.

continue reading >> Idan Amedi performs “It’s Over.” Photo: Idan Amedi / YouTube

PHOTOS: Exploring a Formerly Friendly City

Sitting at the crossroads of continents, religions, and former empires, Istanbul is one of the world's biggest, busiest—and most twisted—cities. Photographer AVIRAM VALDMAN shows us the city's glamour and squalor.

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Issue 20

November 2014
The Tower Magazine

'Open Hillel' Is a Much Bigger Problem Than You Think

A campus movement promoting virulent anti-Israel positions threatens to overturn Jewish life on campuses. AIDEN PINK attended their first-ever conference, and what he saw was a lot more complicated than he expected.

continue reading >> An Open Hillel member hands out materials at a plenary session. Photo: Gili Getz

Bad to Worse: Fight ISIS But Empower Iran?

Iran is using the rise of ISIS to extract concessions in negotiations over its nuclear program. As DAVID DAOUD explains, the West's quest for "cooperation" is playing right into Tehran's hands.

continue reading >> Mural outside the former American embassy, Tehran. Photo: David Holt / flickr

Getting High at the Lowest Place on Earth

More than 12,000 people attended the second annual Dead Sea Rave, which featured internationally renowned DJs playing music for Israelis dancing until dawn. YARDENA SCHWARTZ takes us there.

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A Serious Medical Journal Just Went Totally Clinical

The Lancet is one of the most widely respected medical journals in the world. But as LIAM HOARE documents, they abandoned their dispassionate analyses this summer in favor of anti-Israel conspiracy theories.

continue reading >> An injured person lays on a stretcher at Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis, Gaza Strip, July 8, 2014. Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash90

Optimism In the Face of Hamas and War

This past year has been trying for Israel and its supporters. But as RICHARD A. BLOCK explains, the fundamental facts give hope for the future.

continue reading >> The Israeli flag waves in the wind above the northern Israeli city of Kiryat Shmona, August 13, 2014. Photo: Nati Shohat / Flash90

PHOTOS: Kobani's Horror-Stricken Refugees

More than 150,000 civilians fleeing ISIS have gathered to await the fate of Kobani, where Kurdish forces are making a desperate stand. AVIRAM VALDMAN captured both the tragedy and the hope in their eyes.

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Issue 19

October 2014
The Tower Magazine

ISIS: Can the West Win Without a Ground Game?

U.S. air strikes aim to "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. But as JONATHAN SPYER shows, a much bigger challenge will be preventing other extremists—especially Iranian proxies—from filling the vacuum.

continue reading >> A U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft flies over northern Iraq Sept. 23, 2014, after conducting airstrikes in Syria. The aircraft was part of a large coalition strike package that was the first to strike Islamic State targets in Syria. Photo: Stuart Rankin / flickr

Has Argentina Turned Against its Jews?

Twenty years ago, 85 Argentinians were killed in an Iranian terrorist attack. Their families are still waiting for their government to deliver justice. EAMONN MACDONAGH exposes Argentina's capitulation to Iran at the expense of the truth.

continue reading >> Memorial ceremony commemorating the AMIA bombing, July 18, 2014. Photo: Administración Nacional de la Seguridad Social / flickr

On Many Campuses, Hate is Spelled SJP

Students for Justice in Palestine has toiled for over a decade to transform college campuses into centers of terror support and hate speech. DANIEL MAEL offers the definitive primer on a group that sounds a little too much like Hamas.

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For the World Cup, Qatar Plays Dirty

Armed with massive wealth and a sordid relationship with terrorists from Al Qaeda to Hezbollah, Qatar is using "soccer diplomacy" to cover up its human rights record and support of terrorism. BEN COHEN has the details.

continue reading >> The design of Al-Wakrah Stadium, a planned stadium for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Photo: AFP / Getty Images

The Sabras of Silicon Valley

Israel's start-up success has led to California tech titans competing for ownership of Israeli enterprises. It's not a case of Israeli "brain drain," as MIRIAM POLLOCK explains, but an arrangement that benefits both the U.S. and Israel.

continue reading >> Sainte Claire Hotel, San Jose, California. Photo: Ed Schipul / flickr

PHOTOS: Where Horses Run, and Run

In a city struggling with crime and poverty, Arabs, Jews, and Bedouins come together to enjoy the sport of kings. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us off to the races.

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Issue 18

September 2014
The Tower Magazine

Where the Shadiest Players Find a Home

Under Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey is funding Hamas, helping Iran evade sanctions, and harboring a financier tied to 9/11. JONATHAN SCHANZER exposes how a purported NATO ally is undermining the rest of the West.

continue reading >> President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey. Photo: Thierry Ehrmann / flickr

Can Zionism Include Muslims?

Over the past century, the Zionist story has constantly changed to include new groups seeking a place in Israeli society. Now, as EINAT WILF explains, the next frontier of Zionism will include Israel's Arab population.

continue reading >> Bedouin IDF soldiers participate in a military parade in Tel Aviv, June 1949. Photo: NatanFlayer / Wikimedia

Hamas Is Killing Gaza, One Child at a Time

In the Gaza War, Israeli troops faced an enemy willing to sacrifice its own civilians to gain in international sympathy. YARDENA SCHWARTZ spoke with the IDF soldiers who had to fight under truly inhuman conditions.

continue reading >> .

So, Was the Gaza War Legal?

Accusations of Israeli "war crimes" and "genocide" have been thrown around with abandon. But these charges are not only false, argues DAVID DAOUD—they also are destroying the system of international law needed to stop real atrocities.

continue reading >> A hearing of the case "Accordance with International Law of the Unilateral Declaration of Independence by the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo“ at the International Court of Justice. Photo: Lybil / Wikimedia

Christians Respond to the War on the Jewish State

The country's biggest pro-Israel organization is also one of the most misunderstood. RICK RICHMAN on what pro-Israel Jews can learn from Christians United for Israel.

continue reading >> An image from the 2012 CUFI Washington Summit. Photo: Living Word Christian Center / YouTube

PHOTOS: To Be Gay at Night in Tel Aviv

The city has been called the "Gay Capital of the World," and nowhere is this more evident than in the clubs. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us there.

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Issue 17

August 2014
The Tower Magazine

A U.S. Ally is Behind the Gaza War, and It’s Not Israel

Unfathomably wealthy from its natural gas reserves, Qatar has become an enormous funder of terrorists and a headache for Washington. JONATHAN SPYER explores the frighteningly effective strategy of America's #1 "frenemy."

continue reading >> Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Gary Roughead, left, speaks with Qatari Col. Abdullah Eid Al-Bourdainiby at the Doha International Maritime Defense Exhibition Mid East Naval Commander's Conference in Doha, Qatar. Photo: Tiffini Jones Vanderwyst / U.S. Navy / Wikimedia

Waking Up to a Global Pogrom

BENJAMIN KERSTEIN puts the hardest question on the table: Has Jewish life around the world entered an entirely new, truly dangerous phase?

continue reading >> Killings at the Ozar Hatorah jewish school in Toulouse

Why Everything Reported from Gaza is Crazy Twisted

Under the thumb of Hamas, Western journalists are told what and where to report, and those who break the rules risk abuse or death. Veteran reporter MARK LAVIE takes us inside.

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How to Deal with Rockets Falling Around You

The theaters and night-clubs are quiet, giving way to sirens and shelters and Iron Dome and the surprising strength of a city known for its parties. MIRANDA FRÜM shows us Tel Aviv at war, a moment as revealing as it is harrowing.

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Did the Peace Process Cause the Gaza War?

AARON MENENBERG looks back at the eruptions of violence between Israel and Palestinians over the last two decades and points to an uncomfortable fact: They tend to happen immediately after talks fail. Could there be a connection?

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PHOTOS: When War Becomes Home

It's been a long time since Israel has gone to war with so much domestic and global backing. AVIRAM VALDMAN took his camera to the latest round in the battle of West vs. Jihad.

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Issue 16

July 2014
The Tower Magazine

Time for Some New Friends in the Middle East

Decades of failed U.S. policy raise the question of whether it was a mistake to try to work with authoritarian, revolutionary Sunni Arab regimes. GABRIEL SCHEINMANN argues for a new, bottom-up approach.

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The Terror Within: A Survivor’s Tale

In December 2010, KAY WILSON was brutally attacked by terrorists in the forests outside Jerusalem. Since then, she has become a spokesperson for the rights of victims, the fight against terror—and the hope for a better future despite it all.

continue reading >> Uri Lenz/Flash90

A Big New Threat to Evangelical Support for Israel

American Evangelicals have long been steadfast in their support for the state of Israel. But as LUKE MOON explains, a small, influential group of young anti-Israel Evangelical activists are seeking to change that.

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The Weirdest Place in Tel Aviv

It's part concrete corn maze, part Dr. Seuss playground, and part post-apocalyptic trading post. MATTHEW SCHULTZ takes us through the grungy, grimy, glorious Tel Aviv Central Bus Station.

continue reading >> Photo: Aviram Valdman

The Sun Keeps Shining on Yosef Abramowitz

In his teens, Yosef Abramowitz fought for Soviet and Ethiopian Jews and dreamed of life on a kibbutz. Today his revolutionary passion is changing the way the Sun will power our future. ASSAF DUDAI has details.

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PHOTOS: Mountain of Moses, Beaches of Heaven

Since ancient times, the mysterious Sinai Peninsula has resonated in the imagination of Israelis and tourists from around the world. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us to one of the few places left where reality outstrips imagination.

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Issue 15

June 2014
The Tower Magazine

How Corruption is Ruining the Palestinian Future

In a startling and exclusive first-hand account, AARON MENENBERG exposes how the Palestinian Authority systematically prevents Palestinian entrepreneurs, farmers, and investors from improving their lives.

continue reading >> Photo: Johnnydevil / 123RF

Jazz from the Promised Land

Who imagined that Israel would become a jazz juggernaut? ARYEH TEPPER explores the music, the history, and an unbelievable vibe that spans cultures and oceans—and one trumpeter who is blasting his way into the soul of a genre.

continue reading >> Photo: Aviram Valdman / The Tower

The Anti-Zionism of J Street

If Zionism is the belief in Jewish self-determination through a Jewish state, AIDEN PINK explains, then nothing can be more its opposite than working to override Israel's democratic and policy choices through outside pressure.

continue reading >> J Street ConferenceWashington DC

Nightmare on Sunset Blvd: To Be Jewish at UCLA

Report from the boycott battle lines: TESSA NATH, class of 2015, takes us inside the maelstrom of anti-Israel hate on her campus—and the growing climate of fear felt by anyone who speaks their mind in support of the Jewish State.

continue reading >> second left

The Apartheid Libel, Demolished

When Secretary of State Kerry dropped his now-infamous "A-Bomb," many may not have understood how truly wrong he was. EUGENE KONTOROVICH delivers a decisive dismissal of the idea on the basis on international law.

continue reading >> .

PHOTOS: Ancient Rituals in the Land of the Bible

The Samaritans appeared in history over 2,500 years ago, and today they number around 700 people who follow the most ancient Israelite practices. AVIRAM VALDMAN shows us a Passover seder like none you've ever seen.

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Issue 14

May 2014
The Tower Magazine

The Deep UN: Inside the Infrastructure of Hate

EXPOSÉ: The UN may have repealed its 1975 resolution equating Zionism with racism—but replaced it with a massively funded mechanism for delegitimizing Israel, still running today. BEN COHEN blows the lid off this latest UN scandal.

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How Should Rabbis Speak About Israel?

Instead of using the pulpit for critiquing the Jewish state, rabbis have an obligation to highlight Israel's strengths as a vibrant, democratic, and moral Jewish civilization—so says RICHARD A. BLOCK, the Reform movement's top rabbi.

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The Real Palestinian Refugee Crisis

Who is a refugee, and why has the Palestinian refugee crisis never been solved? As ASAF ROMIROWSKY shows, one big reason is the special UN body that was originally tasked with helping them—but is now a huge part of the problem.

continue reading >> The event was organized by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to mark the Third anniversary of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami

Getting Real in Transcendent Tel Aviv

MIRANDA FRÜM takes us into the sweet, steamy underbelly of trippy Tel Aviv, where modeling and raving and partying all tell us something about coming home.

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Marketplace of Dreams and Fresh Produce

In the last decade and a half, Jerusalem's open-air market has been transformed into a bustling commercial and cultural center. ASSAF DUDAI met with the people who made it happen.

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PHOTOS: An Ethiopian Easter in Jerusalem

This month, AVIRAM VALDMAN takes his camera into the most extraordinary of Christian rituals—the Ethiopian Easter candle-lighting in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.

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Issue 13

April 2014
The Tower Magazine

The Myth of the Thirsty Palestinian

Outrageous attacks suggesting Israel is systematically depriving the Palestinians of their water are increasingly common—and vicious. As AKIVA BIGMAN shows, these lies are about as true as the blood libels of centuries past.

continue reading >> Water tanks in the Old City of Nablus. Photo: Michael Loadenthal / flickr

Discovering Jewish History on the Golan Heights

STEPHEN RUBIN explores the discovery of a ruined ancient synagogue with almost all its original pieces just lying on the ground, waiting to be rebuilt.

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At U. Michigan, Students Fight Back Against Madness

Jewish students at one of America's top schools have faced intimidation, ridicule, and death threats. MOLLY ROSEN, class of 2014, offers a firsthand look.

continue reading >> Photo: Corey Seeman / flickr

In Bethlehem, the Wrong Kind of Christian Festival

In the last decade, Bethlehem has lost its Christian majority to pressure from the Palestinian Authority. So why did American Christians hold a conference there to protest Israel? LUKE MOON takes us there.

continue reading >> Conference participants tour the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. Photo: Aviram Valdman / The Tower

Why is John B. Judis Giving Harry Hell?

Through his reinvention of the story of Harry Truman’s recognition of Israel in 1948, John B. Judis's new book attempts to overturn the foundations of liberal American Zionism. But as JOSHUA MURAVCHIK points out, his version is based on bald distortions and troubling omissions.

continue reading >> harry truman ben gurion angle

PHOTOS: Birthplace of Jesus, Hidden & Found

Long ago a bastion of Christianity, the "little town of Bethlehem" has changed dramatically under Islamic dominion. But as AVIRAM VALDMAN discovered, there is still much of its former glory on display, if you know where to look.

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Issue 12

March 2014
The Tower Magazine

Yes, We Really Can Stop the Slaughter in Syria

Rwanda, Bosnia, Darfur: The world has learned that unspeakable mass atrocities can and must be stopped—or has it? BROOKLYN MIDDLETON explores the options for intervention.

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Ideology at the Oscars

RICK RICHMAN looks at two new films with similar plot-lines, both of which speak of love and identity among Israel's Arabs—but which have been treated very differently by the Hollywood establishment.

continue reading >> A still from the film "Omar." Photo: Adopt Films

Why Liberals Should Give Boycotters the Boot

HOWARD WOHL on the New York Times, the campus boycott movement, and the dangers of letting radicalism take over the Left.

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Hammered: The Palestinian Peace Paradox

Another round of peace talks, another round of failure. BENJAMIN KERSTEIN explores the grinding psychological burden of a conflict that never ends.

continue reading >> Photo: amvrosii/123rf

Joining the Start-Up Nation Just Got a Lot Easier

A new index fund allows ordinary Americans to invest in a range of fast-growing Israeli companies. But as BEN COHEN shows, the path to massive investment is filled with challenges.

continue reading >> Photo: L.D. Heuser / wikimedia

PHOTOS: The Bedouin, Between Two Worlds

AVIRAM VALDMAN gives us a peek at the community that has benefited tremendously from the Israeli experience, yet remains very much apart.

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Issue 11

February 2014
The Tower Magazine

Do ‘Syria,’ ‘Iraq’ and ‘Lebanon’ Still Exist?

Turns out that the Arab Spring did a lot more than just overthrow long-standing regimes. In some cases, JONATHAN SPYER discovers, borders have melted away and countries have effectively vanished.

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The Woman Who Makes Jihadists Squirm

For over a decade, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner has led the charge against terrorists and their paymasters through civil litigation. As DAVID HAZONY explains, she's also changed how we think about the whole fight against terror.

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Why the Left Ought to Love the Jewish State

Once its greatest champions, radical Leftists now seek to paint Israel as racist, oppressive, and colonialist. JOSHUA MURAVCHIK exposes that hypocrisy, and offers a definitive response, grounded in the most liberal principles.

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On Feminists and Pioneers in Early Zionism

LAUREN DAVIDSON explores the complicated experience of women in the early years of the Zionist movement, and a new film that takes an unadorned look.

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The Afterworldly Imagination of Ofir Touché Gafla

One of Israel's most innovative new novelists has just landed on the American scene. BETH KISSILEFF talks to the man who will change the way we think of time, past, and future.

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PHOTOS: A Faith Under Fire

Israel's Christian Arab minority enjoys more freedom than any of their coreligionists in the Middle East. AVIRAM VALDMAN shows us how they're dealing with an increasingly Muslim region.

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Issue 10

January 2014
The Tower Magazine

The Last Lion of Judaea

Ariel Sharon embodied much of what Israelis have come to look for in a leader: Secular, bold, creative, and willing to take the world's endless abuse. BENJAMIN KERSTEIN explores his role in the Israeli psyche.

continue reading >> Ariel Sharon participates in a committee meeting in the Knesset, June 29, 2004. Photo: Sharon Perry / Flash90.

Losing American Support, the Gulf States Scramble

With America losing credibility across the Middle East, its longtime Arab allies are left facing the Iranian menace alone—and, as JONATHAN SPYER points out, they are increasingly looking elsewhere for support.

continue reading >> Photo: the_dead_pixel / flickr

How the Weak Iran Deal Makes War More Likely

Nobody wants either an Iranian nuclear bomb or an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. So why, EMANUELE OTTOLENGHI asks, are the world’s powers trying so hard to make them happen?

continue reading >> Boeing 707 refueling F-15s, June 28, 2011, Israeli Air Force Flight Academy ranks ceremony. Photo: Oren Rozen / Wikimedia

The Bedouin’s Outrageous Claims to the Negev

AKIVA BIGMAN sets aside the emotional attraction to the protests against the Prawer plan, and puts a critical eye to the movement's real aims. The results are deeply troubling.

continue reading >> .

A Chameleon in the Courtyard of the Divine

On the invisible frontiers between Israel and America, between Torah and
literary fiction, Ruchama King Feuerman found her muse. BETH KISSILEFF interviewed her in the office of a New Jersey psychoanalyst. Why not?

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PHOTOS: White Fire on Gold

AVIRAM VALDMAN takes his camera through the biggest snowstorm to hit Israel in over a century.

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Issue #9

December 2013
The Tower Magazine

We Really Need to Talk About Corruption

Forget about whether it's a good idea. JONATHAN SCHANZER asks if it's even possible to build a Palestinian state on profiteering, violent turf wars, and widespread hatred of elected officials. If not, then we have a very big problem.

continue reading >> Counterfeit money found in the Muqata, 2002. Photo: Israel Defense Forces / flickr

Lihi Lapid, Leaning a Different Way

The novelist, photographer, and wife of Israel's finance minister has a tough message for modern women: Don't believe in fairy tales, and know whom you can trust. BETH KISSILEFF interviews the author of 'Woman of Valor.'

continue reading >> Lihi Lapid. Photo: Vardi Kahana / The Tower

Dare We Say It? The Mullahs Must Go

Not so long ago, people on both sides of America's political divide saw democratic revolution as a serious basis for US policy in Iran. What happened? MICHAEL LEDEEN calls for reopening that conversation in the wake of the Geneva debacle.

continue reading >> Protesters marching on Tehran’s Azadi Tower during Iran’s Green Revolution, June 15, 2009. Photo: Hamed Saber / Wikimedia

Jabotinsky’s Lost Moment: June, 1940

Of all the early Zionists, nobody saw the coming Holocaust as clearly as Vladimir Jabotinsky. RICK RICHMAN explores the resonance he had with Americans, the army he almost built, and how his untimely death may have changed history.

continue reading >> Jabotinsky by Yitzhak Danziger. Photo: tamoryair/wikimedia

Oslo Proved Something About Peace, All Right

Twenty years after the dramatic handshake on the White House lawn that heralded the Oslo Accords, peacemakers are still insisting that you lose nothing by trying. As BENJAMIN KERSTEIN shows, they haven't learned a thing.

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PHOTOS: Worlds Beneath the Sacred Waters

Off the coast of the Israeli port city of Ashdod, a whole new kind of fishery has emerged, where Mediterranean sharks swim with whole schools of tuna and sea bream. AVIRAM VALDMAN went there with his camera—and a whole lot of guts.

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Issue #8

November 2013
The Tower Magazine

Ataturk, Ben-Gurion, and Turkey's Road Not Taken

Both Israel and Turkey were founded on a secular, ethnic-nationalist, modern and Western-facing vision. But as GABRIEL MITCHELL shows, little differences can mean a lot when it comes to democracy—and it's playing out before our eyes today.

continue reading >> A military parade on Turkish Victory Day. Photo: Nerostrateur / Wikimedia

Why Are There Jihadists In Minnesota?

They traveled from Somalia to the Great Lakes in search of a better life. But now their kids are joining al-Shabab. AIDEN PINK traveled to Minneapolis, where he learned about the newest front in anti-terror.

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The Decent Marxist

When Norman Geras passed away last month, the world lost an unusually articulate, indefatigable, left-wing thinker who opposed anti-Semitism, anti-Zionism, and illiberalism in all its forms. JOHN-PAUL PAGANO shows us the way.

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The Next Cultural Superpower?

Small countries can contribute a lot to the world cultural stage. BENJAMIN KERSTEIN explores the precedents in the last half-century—and what they could mean for the future of the Jewish state.

continue reading >> Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli was painted onto a Southwest Airlines plane to promote the 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. Photo: Christopher Ebdon / flickr

Facebook Democracy is Good Democracy

For a country that loves its politicians accessible, down-to-earth, and above all authentic, social media have become an invaluable way to talk to your voters. LAHAV HARKOV explores the new political discourse emerging in the Jewish State.

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PHOTOS: And Wine Soothes the Soul of Man

In recent years, Israeli vintners have become a global legend. AVIRAM VALDMAN visits the deep purple world of wondrous winemaking.

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Issue #7

October 2013
The Tower Magazine

Who Is the Real Big Winner of the Arab Spring?

Could the pundits be wrong? While conventional wisdom holds Israel's strategic situation has taken a big hit across the Middle East, GABRIEL SCHEINMANN says the opposite is true.

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Of Utopian Dreamers and the Israeli Spirit

After a decade of research, Yossi Klein Halevi has produced the new Israeli epic. DAVID HAZONY profiles the author of "Like Dreamers," which tracks the paratroopers who took the Temple Mount in 1967, and whose lives mirrored the history they made.

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The Big Hamas Elephant

Western leaders talk about peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. But a third of the Palestinians live under a Hamas in Gaza, which will never make peace with Israel. What, ELHANAN MILLER asks, can they hope to achieve?

continue reading >> Chairman of Hamas in the Gaza Strip, Ismail Haniyeh. Photo: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash90

Tel Aviv: Culinary Cathedrals of the White City

ASHLEY RINDSBERG takes us to some of the top restaurants in Tel Aviv, and discovers an eating culture that is exquisite, rapidly changing, and couldn't give a fig for Michelin ratings.

continue reading >> Tel Aviv fusion hotspot Zepra. Photo: Aviram Valdman

Will Egypt’s Liberals Ever Win?

As a new military-backed regime in Cairo works to stabilize Egypt, prospects for long-term reform seem unclear at best. ARMIN ROSEN spent some time with liberal activists there, and came away with more questions than answers.

continue reading >> Down_With_The_Military_Rule(Graffiti) photo wikimedia

PHOTOS: Loving Life at the Dead Sea

With its air rich in oxygen and its minerals an ancient balm for the afflicted, nothing in the Middle East compares for otherworldliness with the Dead Sea. AVIRAM VALDMAN takes us there.

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Issue #6

September 2013
The Tower Magazine

Say It Again. Kurdish Independence Now

Syria has failed. Iraq is breaking apart. But in both countries, one region has become an island of civil order and pro-Western sentiment. JONATHAN SPYER makes the case for Kurdistan.

continue reading >> mountain kurdistan photo flickr

Why I Sometimes Don’t Fully Hate the UN

With its awful record on terror and Israel, many consider the UN a travesty. But as BEN COHEN writes, it is really two separate organizations: One tries to improve humanity; the other advances the Palestinian cause at any price.

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Iran Is *Really* Good at Evading Sanctions

Tehran's military nuclear program keeps expanding, even under the toughest sanctions yet. EMANUELE OTTOLENGHI offers a breathtaking look at the regime’s secret tactics. If Western leaders really want to stop Iran, they will have to get much more serious, fast.

continue reading >> dusseldorf harbor cred U Kersting slash flickr

A Pitched Battle for the Only Empty Place Left

LIAM HOARE explores the Negev desert, a vast expanse that has become a battleground between Bedouin needing room for their growing families while preserving their traditions, Jews looking to build a new kind of life, and authorities just trying to impose the rule of law.

continue reading >> Photo: Aviram Valdman

Assaf Inbari Is Looking for a Home

Born on a dying kibbutz in the Galilee, a journalist decided to eternalize the rise and fall of a utopia. The result was ’Home,’ a Marquez-like epic that suddenly placed him among Israel’s literary elite. EETTA PRINCE-GIBSON paid a visit.

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PHOTOS: Summer Before the Storm

Just before what might be an autumn of teeth-grinding battle and lost opportunities, AVIRAM VALDMAN aims his camera at the unique indulgences of what was an unseasonably cool Israeli summer.

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Issue #5

August 2013
The Tower Magazine

Deep in Africa, Tehran Spreads Its Tentacles

Despite sanctions, Iran keeps expanding its terrorist reach and making progress towards a nuclear weapon. To achieve this, it's built a vast and effective network in sub-Saharan Africa. ARMIN ROSEN explores.

continue reading >> The ship Francop, captured in 2009 as it smuggled weapons from Iran to Hezbollah. Photo: IDF

The Morocco Model: A Path to Arab Democracy?

More than two years after violent upheavals began sweeping the Arab world, observers search for another way. MICHAEL J. TOTTEN visited one country
that has been above it all—and may hold the keys to a better Arab future.

continue reading >> Rick's Cafe Casablanca

Ego Games: Erdogan’s Olympic-Sized Folly

If Istanbul wins the contest to host the 2020 Olympics, Turkey will become a magnet of global attention. But as AIDEN PINK points out, there's a much darker side to hosting the Games.

continue reading >> Turkey vs Iran. Photo: Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games / flickr

Southern Kibbutzim, Under Fire and Losing Faith

At night, they fear the terror of falling rockets. By day they wonder
about the future of Israel's most iconic way of living. LIAM HOARE met the
Kibbutzniks who live too close to the Gaza border.

continue reading >> Kibbutz Nir Yitzhak. Photo: Flash90

Coexistence Chic in Jaffa and South Tel Aviv

The southern neighborhoods of Israel's greatest city are a study in transformation and recombination: From poor to prosperous, Arab to Jewish, ancient to modern. DEBRA KAMIN explores the hopes and regrets of gentrification.

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PHOTOS: The Druze, Another People Apart

Known for their national loyalty and military service, Israel's Druze villagers live a traditional, isolated and somewhat secretive way of life. AVIRAM VALDMAN travels to the Galilee and gives us a rare look.

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Issue #4

July 2013
The Tower Magazine

Dreaming of a Lebanon Without War

MICHAEL J. TOTTEN interviews key figures in Lebanon's Christian, Sunni, and Druze communities, and discovers a country weary of war—and talking publicly of peace with Israel for the first time in a generation.

continue reading >> Photo: semmickphoto / 123RF

The Map that Ruined the Middle East

How has a century-old deal cut between European powers led to endless misery in the Middle East? GABRIEL SCHEINMANN takes a look at the Sykes-Picot agreement, and asks whether the time has come to rethink the whole thing.

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Drilldown: Is Blue-and-White Oil on the Way?

Forget about natural gas. Israel is sitting on hundreds of billions of barrels of oil—or so it is often said. DANIEL FINK filters out truth from fantasy in the quest for energy independence.

continue reading >> Oil refineries in Haifa by night. Photo: Shay Levy / Flash90

The Gezi Diaries: Erdogan's Turkey Goes Medieval

For years, pundits have sold Turkey as a modern Muslim miracle. But in the last few months, its Islamist government has revealed its true nature, authoritarian and violent. CLAIRE BERLINSKI offers a first-hand account of the mayhem.

continue reading >> Photo: Resim77 / Flickr

An Ancient Rendezvous with a Gleam in its Eye

It was once the most important port in Israel, the place Napoleon besieged but never quite conquered. NERI ZILBER visits the hotels and restaurants of Acre, a town of lost dreams and a surprisingly bright future.

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PHOTOS: City of Utter Fantasy

Nestled on Israel’s northern shore, Acre has tugged at the imagination from biblical times to Napoleon. AVIRAM VALDMAN walks us through the ancient portal.

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Issue #3

June 2013
The Tower Magazine

The Abyss: Can Anything Save Syria?

The world reels from the cruelty of the Syrian civil war. But as JONATHAN SPYER writes, a serious look at the rebels' struggle and the stakes of failure suggests that Western nations must get involved, and quickly.

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The Greatest Living Hebrew Writer Is Arab

An accomplished novelist, screenwriter, and columnist, Sayed Kashua
has taken Israel by storm. DEBRA KAMIN spoke with the man who has
adopted the classic Jewish literary pose of the outsider—and pointed it
at the Jewish state.

continue reading >> kash krop 5a

Hatred Begins in the Classroom

Everyone knows that for peace to prevail, schools need to preach coexistence between Arab and Jew. But as ADI SCHWARTZ discovered, a recent report comparing Palestinian and Israeli textbooks only made matters worse.

continue reading >> Palestinian schoolchildren in Gaza City. Photo: Wissam Nassar/Flash90

My Jerusalem, Forever Divided, Forever One

One day, writes peace activist GERSHON BASKIN, Israel will share its capital with a Palestinian state. The city will have to find a new way to live, its beautiful mosaic of neighborhoods working together under multiple authorities, weaving together a very possible dream.

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If Peace Never Comes, This Will Be the Reason

DEBORAH DANAN has organized co-existence dialogue for Israelis and Palestinians for years. But one big problem has always gotten in the way—
and understanding it may give us the key to peace at last.

continue reading >> Photo: Aviram Valdman

PHOTOS: City of Gold and Dreams and Blood

Sometimes the most ancient sites offer the most stirring personal moments. AVIRAM VALDMAN aims his camera at the unfathomable human experience
that is Jerusalem.

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Issue #2

May 2013
The Tower Magazine

Has Turkey Betrayed the West?

Once a secular, modernizing country, Turkey's ruthless assault on journalists raises serious doubts about its future. JAMES KIRCHICK takes a look at the most oppressive regime in NATO.

continue reading >> Photo: Ali Gemal Ergelen / Fotopedia

Europe Has a Serious Hezbollah Problem

For the first time in decades, the Lebanese terror group has begun launching attacks on European soil. BENJAMIN WEINTHAL explores the new reality—and what EU leaders can do about it.

continue reading >> Europe has a Hezbollah problem. Photo: buchachon/123RF Stock

Downfall of a Great Newspaper

Israel's most venerable daily has become a cautionary tale about how not to keep a newspaper afloat. EREZ TADMOR spoke with employees at Haaretz about where all this is going.

continue reading >> Headquarters of Haaretz, Israel's once-venerable newpaper. Photo: The Tower/Aviram Valdman

Styles of Belief

After decades as an importer of style, Israel has suddenly gotten the attention of the world's leading designers. ELIANNA BAR-EL took to the streets of Tel Aviv, trying to fathom the deepest currents of its fashion scene.

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I am a British, Liberal Zionist. Deal with It.

LIAM HOARE reflects on the Jewish state, anti-Semitism, and the kibbutz.

continue reading >> Cows, Shavuot, Ein Hashofet

PHOTOS: Christian Secrets of the Judean Desert

From hidden monasteries dug out of the cliff-side to baptismal waters of the Jordan, The Tower's AVIRAM VALDMAN took his camera places where few tourists ever go.

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Issue #1

April 2013
The Tower Magazine

The Only Country Left Standing

Foreign policy "realists" have long argued that America's interests lie in supporting the oil sheikhs and putting pressure on Israel. With the region in turmoil, has the calculus shifted? DAVID HAZONY asks what happens when the only country left standing is the one that some people never wanted to see.

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Rationalized Violence in the Land of Children

For DAHLIA LITHWICK, raising children in America meant keeping them safe from terrifying random violence. Now in Israel, things have started to make more sense.

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For Israeli Gays, It’s Not About the Ring

In a child-affirming culture, the struggle for equality focuses less on marriage and more on adoption, surrogacy, and parenthood. ZVIKA KRIEGER takes a look.

continue reading >> Gay pride in Jerusalem. Photo by Miriam Alster/FLASh90

Discovering Israel’s Lost Cities

Far away from the hustle of Tel Aviv and the ideological intensity of Jerusalem, there is a third Israel—places like Lod and Shfaram and Ramle—where Arabs and Jews relate to each other in a totally different way. ASHLEY RINDSBERG takes us there. Photos: Aviram Valdman

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Who Is Yair Lapid, and Why Should We Care?

Yair Lapid is Israel's hottest political phenomenon. But as WILLIAM KOLBRENER shows, his new book reveals a far more fascinating tale—of a son embodying his father's own voice, and a father who haunts not only his son but an entire country.

continue reading >> Yair Lapid, chairman of the Yesh Atid party. Photo: Flash 90

PHOTOS: Golan Heights Like a Crazy Dream

Just a few miles from the Syrian tempest, AVIRAM VALDMAN took his camera for a trek to the northern Golan Heights, and discovered a world unlike any other.

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