Passover 5771

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Michael Walzer once wrote, "Wherever you live, it is probably Egypt." Those of us who aren't oppressed live too close to oppression, or participate in oppression, or are otherwise indifferent to oppression. This Passover, when we tell the story of the Jewish people's journey from the slavery of Egypt to the freedom of Israel, pause for a moment to contemplate this miracle: This year, in Egypt, it isn't even Egypt. Pharaoh is under arrest, his sons are in jail, and the Egyptian people are groping their way to freedom. Next year, at Passover, let us hope that the Egyptian people will have succeeded in their struggle to make the word "Egypt" a synonym for freedom, and not enslavement. Let us hope that in Libya, and Syria, and Iran, freedom is close at hand. Let us hope that the Palestinian people find their way to freedom, too, and let us hope that by next year, the people of the Jewish state of Israel will have completed their journey from slavery to true freedom, a freedom that will grant them a permanent place under the sun.

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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