The Ritual-Murder Accusation and the Roots of Medieval Anti-Semitism

Sept. 18 2015

William of Norwich, a young English apprentice, was found dead in 1144, the victim of mysterious circumstances. A few years later, a monk named Thomas of Monmouth wrote an account of William’s “martyrdom” at the hands of a group of Jews who allegedly tortured and murdered him in a ritual reenactment of the death of Jesus, in accordance with what Thomas alleged was Jewish custom. From this point on, the accusation that Jews engage in the ritual murder of Christian (or Muslim) children has refused to die, despite the utter absence of evidence. Jonathan Brent reviews The Murder of William of Norwich, a recent book on the subject by E. M. Rose:

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Read more at Moment

More about: Anti-Semitism, Blood libel, British Jewry, History & Ideas, Middle Ages

Iran’s Elections Could Complicate U.S. Plans to Renew the Nuclear Deal

June 11 2021

This week, after the International Atomic Energy Agency announced its suspicions that the Islamic Republic is hiding nuclear materials from its inspectors, the White House decided to lift some sanctions on Iranian oil, and still plans to forge ahead with nuclear negotiations. Meanwhile, Iran will hold its presidential elections next week. The exercise is not particularly democratic—the supreme leader approves the candidates in advance, and his minions have from time to time fixed the results—but neither is it entirely meaningless. While there are important differences among the candidates, not one can be dubbed a moderate, even by the standards of this brutal Islamist theocracy. Reuel Marc Gerecht explains why this matters:

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Read more at Dispatch

More about: Ali Khamenei, Barack Obama, Iran nuclear program, Joseph Biden