Some Positive Trends, for Once

It's always newsworthy when friend-of-Goldblog Bradley Burston writes something optimistic about the future of Israel and the Middle East. Read this week's column, which focuses on a series of positive trends, in full. Here's a sample:

A broad backlash in Israel has greeted a spate of unabashedly racist rulings by state-employed rabbis. In defiant response, the rulings have escalated in intensity. At the weekend, a large paid ad in the Jerusalem Post opposing territorial concessions, cited medieval commentary commanding violating the Sabbath and taking up arms against "marauders" (identified in the ad as "Israel's neighbors") "even if their ostensible aim is merely to steal straw and stubble." The most prominent of the signatories to the ad, addressed to Benjamin Netanyahu and dated January, 2011, was Abraham Shapira, former Israel chief rabbi. Rabbi Shapira died on September 27, 2007.
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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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