A Sign of the Apocalypse

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The Israeli government is going after a bookseller:

Leading Israeli authors Amos Oz and David Grossman have added their support to efforts to head off the deportation of an East Jerusalem bookstore owner whose shop at the American Colony Hotel specializes in works about the Arab-Israeli conflict and has been a major destination over the years for diplomats and foreign journalists.

As reported a week ago in Haaretz, the bookshop owner, Munther Fahmi, who was born in East Jerusalem, became subject to deportation after his status as an Israeli resident ended because he had spent about 20 years living in the United States and received American citizenship. Fahmi has filed a request with the inter-ministerial committee authorized to grant exceptions to the denial of residency rights.

I'm wondering if anyone in the current Israeli government understands just how ridiculous this looks? A Jewish country trying to deport a person who sells books? A person who was born in the city in which he keeps his shop?

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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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