A Newly Published List of Surnames Reveals the Diversity of Alexandria’s Vanished Jewish Community

June 24 2021

The Egyptian city of Alexandria was until the 20th century home to one of the oldest Jewish communities in the Diaspora—and for a long time one of the most important. Jews first settled there not long after it was founded by the Greeks under Alexander the Great in 332 BCE; by the beginning of the Common Era Jews comprised over a third of its population, making it likely the largest concentration of Jews anywhere. During the early medieval period Alexandrian Jewry experienced another efflorescence. Jacob Rosen, who once served as Israel’s ambassador to Jordan, has compiled a comprehensive list of Jewish surnames from the city. Benjamin Weinthal writes:

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Egypt, Jewish history, Mizrahim

Why a Government Victory in Southwestern Syria Is Bad News for Israel

Sept. 17 2021

Last week, Russia negotiated a ceasefire between the Syrian government and rebel forces in the city of Daraa, where the initial protests that sparked the uprising against Bashar al-Assad began. The agreement ended a 75-day assault on the city, located near the country’s southwestern border, by Russian, Iranian, and Syrian forces. Jonathan Spyer explains the significance of these events:

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Read more at Jonathan Spyer

More about: Golan Heights, Iran, Israeli Security, Russia, Syrian civil war