With slight disappointment the public regarded the field. Just a minute ago, two knights were converging in fearsome joust, their spears pointing forth, plumage blowing, horses galloping, ladies out waving their handkerchiefs to their champions, - and now we see they have passed each other, both firmly in the saddle, plumage unruffled, spears unbloodied, horses... Read More
President Trump is so pissed off by the Stormy affair that he is likely to prefer a good old war to another humiliation. This suits his enemies and friends (though not his voters) to a tee. He has a choice of doing a difficult manly act that needs all his courage, but which one? Should... Read More
Putin's March 1st presentation of new Russian weapons has been greatly misunderstood as a declaration of strategic parity or triumphalism. There was a much more urgent need, namely, to prevent an imminent strike. This danger is not over yet, for a week later, on March, 7, President Putin emphasised his readiness to employ the nuclear... Read More
Russia avoided the Syrian quagmire despite dire predictions. Putin minimised his footprint, his war is almost over, ISIL has been defeated. Trump could also exclaim “Mission is completed!” – and fly home. But it seems he is eager to rush in where angels fear to tread. Trump does not mind doing for the Israeli Prime... Read More
What’s wrong with gassing your own people? After all, California does it and Oklahoma plans it, and these are fine advanced states. I would not like the Russians to send their howling missiles to Sacramento: they gas their own people. While gassing someone’s else people may be considered a sort of interference in their affairs,... Read More
The Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu is the friendly calf of the Russian proverb who sucks two cows. After his rather successful meeting with President Trump, he went to the enemy No.1 of the United States, and to his good friend, President Putin, in chilly Moscow, where he always gets a warm reception. This time... Read More
If the greatest poker game of all times will end by nuclear grand slam, and the survivors will review the causes of WWIII, they will die laughing. The Third World War had been fought to save al Qaeda. Yes, my dear readers! Uncle Sam invaded Afghanistan in order to punish al Qaeda, and now he... Read More
The recent Syria agreement signed in Geneva by Kerry and Lavrov (probably it will be remembered as “Pizza and Vodka deal”, as the journalists have been served these delicacies by the negotiating teams during the time they had to wait for the results) beside the points disclosed by the foreign ministers included five documents. The... Read More
The massive terrorist attack in Brussels came as a Not So Fast answer to Vladimir Putin’s Mission Accomplished. It appears the world needs more of Russian intervention in the Middle East if the black killers from the desert are to be stopped. Luckily, Russia is not in a rush to leave completely. From what I... Read More
The area around the Central Moscow tube stations looks like Aleppo after an air raid. Ruins, destroyed buildings, bulldozers gathering the shambles. No, Moscow was not hit by terrorists: this is a planned demolition of hundreds of small and not-too-small shacks erected (in defiance of planning law) in the vicinity of tube stations in the... Read More
The Russians and their Syrian allies have cut the main supply line of the rebels to the north of Aleppo, the Azaz corridor. In our last report, we wrote about the Azaz corridor, “a narrow strip of land connecting Turkey to the rebel forces in Aleppo. Though it has been narrowed down to four miles... Read More
TOP NEWS: Feeling Pinch of Oil Collapse, Some Russians Take to Streets, reported The New York Times. Indeed, at that time thousands of Russians were queuing in Central Moscow. The enormous line snaked around in the park, despite frost and snow. People stood three and four hours, braving winter weather: old ladies in furs and... Read More
Heavy darkness befalls the North; the sun rarely emerges from between the clouds. This year, Russia has noticeably less street illumination, and the spirits are anything but festive. Only the whiteness of the snow and Christmas trees break the gloom and remind us of the forthcoming low point of the cosmic wheel, Yuletide, when days... Read More
Russians are enjoying their Syrian adventure. Twenty days after its start, their entry into the Syrian war has paid off and brought some dividends. They displayed their military toys and duly impressed other boys in the sandbox. After a long period of despondency the Russians have now been cheered up, thank you, they feel much... Read More
President Putin is a pirate, no less. In his declaration at the UN, he stole President Bush Jr’s copyrighted 2001 call to fight Terror. That’s why the Americans were taken aback: the Russian President played back at them the best tropes of their own presidents. This was a clever subterfuge: instead of pointing out the... Read More
Despite doubts and denials, Russia is about to embark on an ambitious expansion of its Syrian presence, likely to change the game in the war-torn country. Russia’s small and dated naval repair facility in Tartous will be enlarged, while Jableh near Latakia (Laodicea of old) will become the Russian Air Force base and a full-blown... Read More
First, the good news. American hegemony is over. The bully has been subdued. We cleared the Cape of Good Hope, symbolically speaking, in September 2013. With the Syrian crisis, the world has passed a key forking of modern history. It was touch and go, just as risky as the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. The... Read More
In the Middle Eastern corrida, the moment of truth is approaching fast. Assad’s Syria is running around the arena like a wounded bull, fraught and worn down by a year of cruel strife. Banderillas of mujaheeds stick out of his broken hide. The public, the Europeans, the Americans, the Gulf rulers call: Kill him! And... Read More
Israel retains its ability to control the Syrian 'Islamist' rebels. Netanyahu is not worried about Syria's possible disintegration. Despite the received wisdom claiming that Israelis prefer a stable and familiar Assad to the great unknown of Islamic guerrillas, the new and sensational information we received points out to the opposite, namely: Israelis prefer the Somalisation... Read More
The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court announced on Thursday that he would soon stand before the United Nations and report on alleged Libyan war crimes. We can only hope that his brief will include the latest war crime, the murder of Qaddafi’s family, his son and three grandchildren, and the assassination attempt on... Read More
Israel Shamir has written extensively on public affairs, primarily relating to the Israel/Palestine conflict and Russia, including three books, Galilee Flowers, Cabbala of Power and Masters of Discourse available in English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Norwegian, Swedish, Italian, and Hungarian.
He describes himself as a native of Novosibirsk, Siberia, who he moved to Israel in 1969, served as paratrooper in the army and fought in the 1973 war, afterwards turning to journalism and writing. During the late 1970s, he joined the BBC in London later living in Japan. After returning to Israel in 1980, Shamir wrote for the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz, and was the Knesset spokesman for the Israel Socialist Party (Mapam), also translating and annotating the cryptic works of S.Y. Agnon, the only Hebrew Nobel Prize winning writer, from the original Hebrew into Russian.
His perspective on the Israel/Palestine conflict was summed up in The Pine and the Olive, published in 1988 and republished in 2004. That same year, he was received in the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem and Holy Land, being baptised Adam by Archbishop Theodosius Attalla Hanna. He now lives in Jaffa and spends much time in Moscow and Stockholm; he is father of three sons.