Circle of Pro-Israel Writers Rises

Shalem Center Boosted Right-of-Center Journalists

By Naomi Zeveloff

Published July 31, 2012, issue of August 03, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

They’re under 30, mostly right-of-center on Israel and writing for some of the pre-eminent publications in America.

A new crop of young pro-Israel writers is on the ascent. And many of them got their start at the same place: a collection of small university journals seeded by the Shalem Center, a prominent Zionist think tank in Israel.

The rising Middle East commentators include several alumni of Columbia University’s quarterly journal, The Current. Armin Rosen, for instance, is a fellow at Atlantic Media, where he recently penned an article attacking the anti-Zionist blog Mondoweiss for having the “appearance of an anti-Semitic enterprise.” David Feith, son of George W. Bush Pentagon appointee Douglas Feith, is an assistant editor at The Wall Street Journal, where he has inveighed against the Palestinian Fatah party, Israel’s negotiating and security partner in the occupied West Bank. Jordan Hirsch is an editor at the prestigious quarterly Foreign Affairs and recently defended the legacy of right-wing Zionist ideologue Vladimir Ze’ev Jabotinsky in Tablet, an online Jewish magazine. And Bari Weiss, a senior editor at Tablet, has written for The Wall Street Journal about the Middle East and Israel.

All of these former Current editors declined to speak to the Forward.

Alumni from other Shalem-supported journals — who did speak to the Forward — have also made names for themselves writing about Israel and Judaism, though not always from a right-of-center perspective. Zvika Krieger, founder of the Yale Israel Journal, is senior vice president of The S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace and is a correspondent for The Atlantic. And Sarah Breger, who started a journal called Kedma at the University of Pennsylvania, is the managing editor of Moment magazine.

“In a sense, these people have become young, influential voices in their communities,” said Tanya Strusberg, who ran the campus affairs program at Shalem from 2007 to 2008.

That the Shalem Center was the early nurturing ground for a cohort of rising stars of pro-Israel journalism is a happy coincidence, Strusberg said. The goal of Shalem’s student journals program was to provide an outlet for Jewish pro-Israel voices on college campuses, not necessarily to spawn a new generation of professional Israel advocates.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Happy birthday to the Boy Who Lived! July 31 marks the day that Harry Potter — and his creator, J.K. Rowling — first entered the world. Harry is a loyal Gryffindorian, a matchless wizard, a native Parseltongue speaker, and…a Jew?
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.