The Soviet Jews Who Turned a Beloved Cartoon Character into a Metaphor for Their Plight

The hero of the Soviet Union’s most popular animated series was an adorable but mysterious “beast of unknown origin” named Cheburashka. To Maya Balakirsky Katz, Cheburashka’s rootlessness, his inability to fit into bureaucratic classification systems—in an early episode he is rejected by the zoo since its staff doesn’t know which cage to put him in—and even the fact that he resembles but most definitely is not a bear (the symbol of Russia), all suggest that he is a symbolic Jew. Such an interpretation becomes more persuasive given the men behind the cartoon:

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Read more at Tablet

More about: Arts & Culture, Soviet Jewry, Soviet Union, Television, Zionism

What Palestinians Want

July 10 2020

In an extensive report on a major survey of Palestinian public opinion, David Pollock sums up his key findings. Above all, the results suggest that large numbers of Palestinians are willing to make compromises with Israel in the short term, but tend to harbor maximalist, even militant, long-term goals:

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Read more at Washington Institute for Near East Policy

More about: Palestinian public opinion, Palestinians, Two-State Solution