Lay of the Land Weekly Newsletter- 19 September 2022

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 Virginia, USA.

The Israel Brief

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Lay of the Land wishes its readers a Shana Tova or Happy New Year. In keeping with the festive hope of a “sweet” year ahead,
may the piercing wails of the Shofar herald new directions to bring the world to a healthier and more peaceful place.




Observations and insights in chilling documentary about 2016 terrorist attack in the heart of Tel Aviv

By David E. Kaplan

Close Encounters. Prof. Boaz Ganor moderates riveting discussion on documentary with (l-r) survivor, director and former senior security official.

The evening of 8 June 2016 was a Midsummer Nights’ Nightmare at Tel Aviv’s popular Sarona market, when two ISIL-inspired Palestinian terrorists sat down at a table at ‘Max Brenner’, removed their firearms and shot randomly – killing and wounding in a murderous rampage. Now made into a chilling documentary, its showing followed by a panel discussion at Reichman University’s Counter-Terrorism Conference,  proved unnerving as it was illuminating.


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A tribute to ‘The Queen’ of our times

By Rolene Marks

A Queen for All Times. Although 10 decades in the public eye, a smiling spirited Queen Elizabeth II parts from her people young at heart.

From the writer’s perspective in Israel, “David Ben Gurion was Prime Minister” when the globally lamented Queen Elizabeth II “ascended the throne”. Her 1947 declaration on her 21st birthday in Cape Town, South Africa that “… my whole life. whether it be long or short. shall be devoted to your service…” was thankfully “long” and explains why her funeral is expected “to be the most viewed event in history.”


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Poland & Lithuania

A sad tale of two countries

By Stephen Schulman

Survivors of the Shoah. A DP camp much like where the writer’s wife’s Yona was born to parents who met, married and left for Israel

Grateful to the foresight of all his four grandparents who left Eastern Europe for South Africa over a 100 years ago, the Holocaust was part of the writer’s “education and consciousness”  but hardly touched him personally until he came to Israel and married Yona. Born to parents in a DP Camp in Germany before emigrating to Israel, Yona’s family’s history brought home to the writer the intimate horrors of what befell Europe’s once thriving Jewish communities.

Poland & Lithuania

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LOTL Co-founders 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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