Lay of the Land Weekly Newsletter- 23 January 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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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.

The Israel Brief

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Pin it on the Jews

By David E. Kaplan

Blame the Jews. This flyer blaming Jews for covid delivered to homes across the USA.

If covid is infecting bodies it is also infecting minds as it provides another perfect pretext to blame Jews for global suffering. Following a widely distributed flyer pinpointing specific American Jews responsible for “every single aspect of the covid agenda”,is it any wonder that US antisemitism has frighteningly shifted from rhetoric to violence!

Pin it on the Jews

(Click on the blue title)


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Ire

Harry Potter star and Gringotts Goblins create an uproar to rival the Dementors

By Rolene Marks

Get Real.  Middle East politics is confusing enough without the social media rants of  ‘graduates’ from Hogwarts.

What do Harry Potter stars and Gringott’s Goblins have to do with antisemitism? Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling and star, Emma Watson made news headlines recently – for the wrong reasons. What does the bestselling children’s author of all time, a star of the movie franchise and cancel culture all have in common?

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Ire

(Click on the blue title)


From Open Windows to Opening Doors

Diplomatic tiptoeing  from Dhaka to Jerusalem

By Adv. Craig Snoyman

Story of Jacob. An Indian Jewish hero who distinguished himself in the war for Bangladesh independence

Disquieting revelations from his Bangladeshi clients that they not only firmly disapproved of Israel but also did not distinguish between Jews and Israelis, the writer – a lawyer – delved into the relatively unknown history of Bangladesh, to discover there exists a Jewish-Israeli dimension that may  ease the way to normalising relations between the two countries.

From Open Windows to Opening Doors

(Click on the blue title)


The United Nations Is Giving the Names of Uyghur Dissidents to China

By  Josh Feldman

(Article appears courtesyof Newsweek)

Dead in its Tracks. UN assisting in the murder of Uyghurs by helping Chinese leadership cover its genocidal tracks.

How is this for irony? With increasing exposure of the Chinese government violently oppressing its Uyghur Muslim population in Xinjiang – described as a “genocide” – why is the very international body charged with protecting human rights – the United Nations –   lending them a hand!

The United Nations Is Giving the Names of Uyghur Dissidents to China
(Click on the blue title)

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).

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