Israel Matters! – April 2024

Back to Israel

(David Margolis, Guest Columnist)

I was a guest contributor for this column last July where I shared my “Reflections on a First Tour of Israel” following TBS’ May 2023 Israel Trip.  I ended that column with: “On the flight back to the States I knew two things to be true – that I would return to Israel as often as possible, and if I no longer felt safe as a Jew in America I would be welcomed and protected in Israel.  Like Home.” (more…)

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Israel Matters! – March 2024

To think like an Arab Israeli

The article below written by Yahyah Mahamid originally appeared February 3, 2024 on ( We at Israel Matters found this so interesting and important that we are sharing it with you below.

As an Arab-Israeli, the events of October 7 and the fighting in Gaza have had a profound effect on me and the Arab community in Israel as a whole. These events put a spotlight on the complicated and complex dynamics of coexistence, the heavy price Israeli Arabs paid and are still paying, and the strong desire of Israeli Arabs to be part of Israeli society. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – February 2024


Eylon Levy is an official spokesman for the Government of Israel. A graduate of both the University of Oxford and Cambridge University, he became widely known following in interview with Sky News regarding the exchange of 50 Hamas-held Israeli civilian hostages for 150 convicted Palestinian offenders in Israeli prisons. The interviewer repeated the terms of the exchange — 50 hostages for 150 criminals – and then questioned whether this 3-for-1 ratio meant that each Israeli life was being valued by Israel as equivalent to three Palestinian lives. With an incredulous raise of his eyebrows, Levy proceeded to expose the idiocy of this proposition – of course Israel would agree to exchanging prisoners for hostages on a one-for-one basis, but we’re talking about Hamas here. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – January 2024

Doing Good When Times Are Bad

In 1973 I was a student in Jerusalem during the Yom Kippur War. Following several days in and out of bomb shelters, our student group was split into volunteer teams that fanned out across Jerusalem. I was dispatched to a poor neighborhood to go door-to-door and deliver new garbage bags to the residents. This was one small thing that I could do to help. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – December 2023

Israel Matters On Campus Too!

As of the date this article is written, Israel is under attack from all sides. While the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) relentlessly continue their mission of dismantling Hamas in Gaza following the atrocities of October 7, amid all the tragic collateral civilian casualties due to Hamas having embedded deeply in the local population, Israeli cities and towns continue to be targeted by rockets fired from Gaza.  Other Iranian-sponsored terrorists have joined in this naked aggression: Hezbollah rockets have forced Israel to evacuate civilians from the “finger of the Galilee” emptying towns from Metulla to Kiryat Shemona. Combined with surviving residents forced to flee their homes in Israel’s south (the “Gaza envelope”), at least half a million Israelis are now refugees in their own homeland living in hotels, shelters, or with family elsewhere in the country.  Iranian-backed terrorists based in Syria have launched rockets and drones at Israel, one of which landed on a kindergarten in Israel’s Red Sea resort town of Eilat.  From the south, Iranian-backed Houthis have also launched rockets at Israel, though so far none of these have reached their targets, having been intercepted by US naval forces or Israeli missile defense systems. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – November 2023

This Time is Different – Israel Under Attack – A Personal View

October 7, 2023, may be the worst day in Israeli history.

I arrived in Israel on October 3rd.  Israel is a place I have visited dozens of times. There are so many things I love about Israel – the people, the culture, the food, the air, walking on the “tayelet” (boardwalk) along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, visiting the many historic, cultural and religious sites, and being in a place where it isn’t an effort to be Jewish.

But this trip to Israel was different.

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Israel Matters! – October 2023

Sabra Celebs!

Too frequently, what the world sees, hears, and thinks about Israel is negative (frequently with a not-so-accurate and anti-Israel slant). But on the other end of the public opinion continuum, Israel has a number of internationally-known “celebs” (a “celeb” or “סלב” in Hebrew is just what you might expect – a celebrity), who routinely shine a bright spotlight on the country. Israel Matters is proud to devote this month’s issue to highlighting a few of these famous folks of Israeli descent who, through their exemplary work, bring a positive feeling about the State of Israel to many around the world. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – September 2023

More Israeli Weird Science!

In the February 2022 issue of Israel Matters we introduced you to a goldfish that could drive its fish tank around the campus of Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Tel Aviv research that detected liars based on the movements of facial muscles, and 3D-printed meatless meat inspired by research at the Technion Israel Institute of Technology. A year and a half later, and just in time for Rosh Hashanah when we should be inspired by fresh ideas and new thoughts, Israel Matters is proud to present an encore edition of Israeli Weird Science. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – July/August 2023

Reflections On A “First” Visit to Israel

I consider May’s TBS tour of Israel led by Rabbi Scolnic to be my first time in Israel. In actuality it was my second as I did spend two nights in Tel Aviv attending my nephew’s wedding back in 2012. That visit consisted of a quick afternoon visit to Jaffa, a couple of wonderful meals alongside the Mediterranean Sea, and the aforementioned wedding ceremony and celebration. (more…)

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Israel Matters! – June 2023

Just before Israel marked seventy-five years of independence, it lost two literary giants who defined in their work and in their lives the best of modern Zionism.  Meir Shalev and YehonatanGeffen, both born in the legendary cooperative village (moshav shitufi – מושב שיתופי) of Nahalal shortly before Ben-Gurion declared the founding of a Jewish state in Palestine, exemplified the hopes and the distresses of their generation of “new” Jews.  Secular, socialist, and critics of the rise of messianic Zionism, their death in the days in which democratic Zionism is fighting back, reminds us that the values of the founding generation of Israel are alive and kicking. (more…)

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