The academic boycott of Israel, ostensibly targeting Israeli academe, is actually meant to isolate and stigmatise Jewish academics in America. It serves the aim of pushing Jewish academics out of shrinking disciplines, where Jews are believed to be ‘over-represented.’ That is how diehard supporters of the Palestinians find academic allies who have no professional interest in Palestine, in fields like American studies or English literature.
Born within four years of each other, David Ben-Gurion and Abdullah bin Hussein emerged out of the same political womb to forge Israel and Jordan in battle. An examination of the parallels in their lives.
Room 16 of the American Colony Hotel is reputedly where the Oslo process began, between Israel and the PLO. It isn't, but it was a milepost on the "road not taken," between Israel and the "inside" West Bank leadership personified by Faisal Husseini. A look at the forgotten alternative to Oslo, inspired by the author's own stay in Room 16.
An appraisal of the way Zionist leaders, above all Chaim Weizmann, tried to hold Britain to its Balfour Declaration commitment by emphasizing the dangers of mass Jewish migration after the First World War.
The Washington Institute has sponsored a series of discussions about sudden succession in the Middle East. Each session focuses on scenarios that might unfold if a specific ruler or leader departed the scene tomorrow. This essay sets the scene by asking whether a major leader’s departure is necessarily history-changing. Martin Kramer examines past cases of unexpected departures of twentieth-century regional leaders, in Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Saudi Arabia. He suggests that the impact depends mostly on where the hand of fate interrupts the leader’s career. Paradoxically, the more successful a leader has been in realizing his larger goals, the less consequential his exit.
Why did MLK not condemn Israel’s actions in the twenty years between 1948 and 1968, at a time when Israel stood repeatedly in the dock? And why didn’t he say anything about the Palestinian “plight,” especially as he got a high-level tutorial on the subject during a visit to East Jerusalem in 1959? An exploration of possible influences, from Reinhold Neibuhr to King's own personal experience.
A survey of the past history of efforts to create a regional security order in the Middle East. Israel has always sought its security through major ties with centers of power outside the region. The article examines the logic for this approach, and assesses prospects that this might change.
The career of Bernard Lewis was punctuated by three wars: World War II, the Cold War, and what he himself called “the crisis of Islam.” The article seeks to demonstrate that for Lewis, these wars formed a continuum, the common thread being the struggle to defend freedom and democracy against the forces of tyranny.
The Netflix series The Crown includes a scene depicting British prime minister Anthony Eden nearly misleading Queen Elizabeth about the role of Israel in the 1956 Suez "collusion." The author considers whether the depiction is accurate.
The two parts of this essay were published in April 2018. Visit the website of Mosaic Magazine for the responses by Benny Morris, Efraim Karsh, and Avi Shilon.
Kramer, Martin. “A Controversy at Harvard.” In Anti-Zionism on Campus: The University, Free Speech, and BDS, edited by Andrew Pessin and Doron S. Ben-Atar, 151-162. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 2018.Abstract
A review of the Harvard aspects of a 2010 controversy that followed remarks on Gaza made by the author at a conference in Israel.