As the Russian Easter approaches – it will symbolically coincide this year with May Day – it is the right time to speak of a very important recent spiritual event that received too little publicity in the West, but it kept Russia all agog. This was not an Oscar nomination, after all. Two old men,... Read More
I am now in Moscow, which once again became a holy city, with hundreds of churches and monasteries that were resurrected from ashes for last twenty years. The churches are all different, some gold and baroque paintings in 19th century style, some harking back to Ivan the Grim days, decorated with murals floor to ceiling,... Read More
They say that at a press-conference before departing from Israel, President George W. Bush was asked: “What impressed you most of all in Israel?” The Texan replied: “The Bible in my room. It was in your tongue! Despite the wars and terrorism, you did not begrudge the effort and translated the Holy Bible into Hebrew... Read More
Jews are evil, and there is a special place in hell just for them. I’d say to them: Believe whatever you want. Practice whatever you preach. Just stay the hell away from us. Do not rush to denounce me, do not send this piece post-haste to your local branch of ADL or LICRA, do not... Read More
On the many-coloured Hans Buenting Map (1581), our world looks like a flower; its three petals present the three continents of Europe, West Asia, Africa, united by the Holy Land. The map allows for a different reading, too: the flower is the faith of Christ and Our Lady, and the three petals are Islam, Catholicism... Read More
They walk in big and jolly crowds on Jerusalem streets, waving blue-and-white flags and smiling at passers-by; the Christian friends of Israel often arrive in the autumn, during the Tabernacles Feast. This year, too, they came by thousands; cheered up the despondent shopkeepers of Ben Yehuda Street, promised to stand by us, in weather fair... Read More
Three incredible days passed in Jerusalem. On Friday night, burial processions carried out the shroud of the Lord from the small ancient church of St James into the parvis of the Holy Sepulchre. Yesterday, tens of thousands of native Christians and pilgrims flocked into the great edifice of the Holy Sepulchre to celegrate the annual... Read More
In the Return of the King, the Oscar-studded film based on the Tolkien’s fantasy, there is a touching and inspiring moment: at the lowest ebb of struggle, when the Sauron hordes pour in through the breached gates of Gondor, horns announce the arrival of the relieving force. Rohan is coming, and the looting Orks retreat... Read More
The film of Mel Gibson, The Passion, grows into an important, maybe the important event of the year. Even before screening, it caused violent reactions of the American Jewish 'thought police', ADL led by obnoxious Foxman. There are unpleasant rumours (in the New York Times) that Mr Gibson gave in and decided to censor the... Read More
In this season of short days and long nights, the Greeks like their Palestinian Orthodox Christian brothers turn their thoughts - not to neutral 'shopping season', like Americans, not to Lapland, like the West Europeans, but to a small town of Bethlehem in Palestine, where the most profound miracle took place and Eternal Logos was... 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.