Fiamma Nirenstein

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Fiamma Nirenstein

Fiamma Nirenstein (Florence, 18 December 1945) is a journalist and author. On April 2008's national elections, she was elected Member of the Italian Parliament and she served as Vice President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Chamber of Deputies for the entire XVI legislature (ending on March 2013).

Biography[edit]

Born in Florence, where she completed her university studies in Modern History, Nirenstein is an expert of the Middle East conflicts, terrorism, anti-Semitism, human rights and her activities deals with the great changes that are taking place within the Middle East democratization process. She became a specialist in these fields after having travelled all over the world as a specialist in foreign affairs.

Nirenstein is a leading columnist for the Italian daily “Il Giornale”. From 1991 to 2006, she has been correspondent from Israel for “La Stampa” daily and “Panorama” weekly. She is the author of ten books in Italian (and two in English), the latest being “A Gerusalemme”, (Rizzoli, 2012). In Italy, Nirenstein has introduced and prefaced Bernard Lewis, Nathan Sharansky and Ruthie Blum. She has been granted over twenty awards for her literary and journalistic activity.

On April 2008's national elections, she was elected Member of the Italian Parliament and she served as Vice President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Chamber of Deputies for the entire XVI legislature (ending on March 2013). She was also a member of the Italian delegation to the Council of Europe, where she represented Italy in the Network for the fight against violence on children. Nirenstein also established and chaired the Committee for the Inquiry into Antisemitism of the Italian Parliament. During her parliamentary activity, she has been working intensively at a great number of laws, resolutions, interrogations in many fields, with a particular focus on Israel, human rights, international controversies, democratization in the Middle East, awareness on the Iranian nuclear capabilities.

On June 29, 2011, Nirenstein has been unanimously elected chairperson of the International Council of Jewish Parliamentarians (ICJP), an organization that brings together Jewish legislators, parliamentarians and government ministers from around the world. In 2011, she established a center on Foreign Policy, “SUMMIT - for the dialogue between Europe and Middle East, human rights and democracy”, with which she organized tens of events and conferences. She is a Selection Committee Member of the Genesis Prize, a fellow of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and of the Gatestone Istitute, as well as a member of the Advisory Board of Ngo-Monitor and a board member of the European Friends of Israel (EFI). She is also one of the six founding members of the steering committee of the Interparliamentary Coalition on Combating Antisemitism (ICCA), and in the Board of the Friends of Israel Initiative, established on 2010 by President José Maria Aznar. She is also a Board member of the “Talmud Project”, a major initiative, sponsored by the Italian government, to translate the Babylonian Talmud into Italian. On December 16, 2009, Nirenstein, together with the other members of the ICCA steering committee, has been awarded by the Israeli Knesset for her commitment in the fight against Antisemitism. On April 2011, she was awarded in New York by CAMERA, together with José Maria Aznar and John Bolton, for her activity as “Friend of Israel”.

In June 2011, Nirenstein was included in the Jerusalem Post list of the 50 most influential Jews in the world, headed by Marc Zuckerberg.

In '93 and '94, she directed the Cultural Institute of the Italian Embassy in Tel Aviv.

Nirenstein started her carrier in 1977 and has been a columnist and correspondent for all the major magazines (Panorama; l'Espresso; Epoca). Nirenstein contributed to the New York Sun, to Commentary Magazine and has written for Moment Magazine. Today she writes a blog on the Times of Israel. Her writing are collected in four American anthologies, her work as a journalist is at length quoted in "Bias" by Bernard Goldberg (Regency Publishing, 2002, pp. 200–206) as an example of good journalism in explaining the terrorist phenomenon. The Wall Street Journal one day after 9-11 quoted at length her article on Commentary Magazine to explain the disaster.

She has been dedicating a great effort in voicing for Muslim dissidents. In December 2007 she promoted and organized in Rome the international conference “Fighting for Democracy in the Islamic World”, which was the continuation of the great Prague conference on dissidents, promoted by Natan Sharansky, Václav Havel and José Maria Aznar in June the same year.

Fiamma Nirenstein has produced many documentaries for the Italian TV, the last by the title of "Settlers", about the disengagement seen through the lives of the people involved in it. She is daily interviewed by the Italian TV and radio and on 2006 she conceived and conducted a program on foreign affairs, "Ore diciotto/Mondo", on channel RAI 2. She is weekly interviewed on Radio Radicale, for a program named "Mediorientale". Her experience of journalism includes an enormous group on interviewed leaders, from Rajiv Gandhi to Deng Xiaoping, from the protagonists of the anti-communist regimes revolutions of the ‘80 to all the most important figures of the Israeli and Palestinian worlds, from Arafat to Sharon to Netanyahu. She has opened in Italy a harsh discussion about antisemitism, anti-Zionism and the left. She has been official speaker in a variety of conferences on antisemitism, among them, the world forum of OCSE in Berlin about antisemitism, the Boston Conference on "antisemitism, the press and Europe" (2004), "Multiculturalism, the left and antisemitism" during the 2006 international symposium of the Vidal Sassoon Center (SICSA) at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2014 SICSA international symposium, she introduced the issue of fighting “Israelophobia” to beat contemporary antisemitism.

The pivotal focus and underlying idea that runs through all Fiamma Nirenstein's work is the fight against totalitarianism and terrorism as connected to antisemitism and hate for Israel.

Since 2007 she has a popular website/blog and a newsletter in English and Italian: www.fiammanirenstein.com

On May 26, 2013 she made Alyià and she lives now in Jerusalem with frequent visits to Italy.

Notable views[edit]

'every Jew in the world is an Israeli even if he's not aware of it. Anyone who doesn't know it is making a big mistake.' [1]

'morally speaking, there mustn't be negotiations with Hamas, which thinks that Jews are the sons of monkeys and pigs. You can't negotiate with cannibals, who eat human beings.'[1]

Books by Fiamma Nirenstein[edit]

  • A Gerusalemme (2012) The history of Jerusalem through the eyes of twenty years of journalistic work
  • Israele Siamo Noi (2007) On the State of Israel as archetype for a liberal democracy at war with terror. - Translated into English: Israel is us - a personal odyssey to a journalist's understanding of the Middle East, JCPA ed., 2009
  • La Sabbia di Gaza (2006) On the Israeli disengagement from Gaza.
  • Terror: The New Anti-Semitism and the War Against the West (2005) An English-language selection of various articles.
  • Gli Antisemiti Progressisti (2004) A look at the new anti-Semitism.
  • Islam, la guerra e la speranza (2003) An interview with Bernard Lewis.
  • L'Abbandono, come l'Occidente ha tradito gli ebrei (2002). A book that argues the West has betrayed the Jewish people.
  • Un solo Dio, tre verità (2001).(One god, three truths)
  • Come le cinque dita di una mano – una famiglia di ebrei da Firenze a Gerusalemme (1998) Written with her family.
  • Israele: una pace in guerra (1996).)Israel, at peace in war)
  • Il Razzista Democratico (1990).(The Democratic racist)

References[edit]

External links[edit]