Lay of the Land Weekly Newsletter- 18 May 2021

Unveiling the contours and contrasts of an ever-changing Middle East landscape

Reliable reportage and insightful commentary on the Middle East by seasoned journalists from the region and beyond


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We celebrate the grain harvest of the early summer and remember the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai seven weeks after the 
Exodus from Egypt. In our troubling and turbulent times, we pray for peace and prosperity
for all the people of the region and beyond.
Chag Shavuot Sameach

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What’s happening in Israel today?  See from every Monday – Thursday LOTL’s “The Israel Brief” broadcasts and on our Facebook page and  YouTube  by seasoned TV & radio broadcaster, Rolene Marks familiar to Chai FM listeners in South Africa and millions of American listeners to the News/Talk/Sports radio station  WINA, broadcasting out of Charlottesville, Virginia. You can tune-in to Rolene’s interview on the Schilling Show or listen to recaps on the Israel Brief. You can subscribe to LOTL news from Israel and enjoy at a time of your convenience.

The Israel Brief

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From Gaza with Hate

Israel under attack from the Air and the Airwaves

By David E. Kaplan

City Lights. After 2.00am, a rocket from  Gaza scores a direct hit on a residential building in Petah Tikva.
The daily ‘messages’ from Gaza to Israel is spewing death and destruction. Israelis wait for the shrieking siren,
warning of ‘incoming mail’. The writer reflects on daily life ‘Under Fire’
from missiles and media.

From Gaza with Hate

(Click on the blue title)


Media Watchdog

Open letter to the Daily Mail and other media outlets

By Rolene Marks

Murky Media. What role is the media really playing in covering the complex Israel-Gaza conflict?

With Israel facing off terror entities in the Gaza strip, it is also facing off the international media, who rather than present an accurate picture of a complex situation,  appear to the writer, more engaged in a battle for clicks and views?

Media Watchdog

(Click on the blue title)


The Empire Strikes Back

By Craig Snoyman

Inquisition. Star Wars’ Darth Vader find resonance with the writer in South Africa’s judicial process.

Recalling the iconic blockbuster from his youth, the writer – a practicing advocate from South Africa – compares the dark forces of that memorable movie facing the ‘Forces of Light’ with the recent ‘DARK’ antisemitic inquisition of top Jewish candidates for the position of judges to South Africa’s judiciary.

The Empire Strikes Back

(Click on the blue title)


The Arab Voice

Arab writers from the Middle East and beyond, opine on Pope Francis’s meeting with Holocaust survivor; the need for  Kuwait to reform its legal system with an emphasis on gender equality, and the preferred attributes of national leaders in the region today.

The Arab Voice

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LOTL Cofounders David E. Kaplan (Editor), Rolene Marks and Yair Chelouche

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While the mission of Lay of the Land (LotL) is to provide a wide and diverse perspective of affairs in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world, the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by its various writers are not necessarily ones of the owners and management of LOTL but of the writers themselves.  LotL endeavours to the best of its ability to credit the use of all known photographs to the photographer and/or owner of such photographs (0&EO)