Amotz Asa-El

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Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Amotz Asa-El (Hebrew אמוץ עשהאל), The Jerusalem Post's senior columnist and former executive editor,[1] is a fellow at the Hartman Institute; The Jerusalem Report's senior writer; and a leading commentator on Middle Eastern, Israeli, and Jewish affairs.


Prior to joining the Post, Asa-El was a foreign correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle, and the foreign editor of the Hebrew-language financial daily Telegraph.

Having joined The Jerusalem Post as its business editor in 1995, Asa-El was later The Post's News Editor and editor-in-chief of its overseas edition, the International Jerusalem Post, before serving as The Jerusalem Post's executive editor. In these positions, Asa-El led The Post's editorial line that blended economic conservatism, diplomatic pragmatism, political reform and cultural pluralism. As executive editor, overseeing the work of 100 writers, editors, copyeditors, designers and photographers, Asa-El directed the redesign of the daily Jerusalem Post, the remodeling of its weekend magazines and supplements, and the creation of an opinion desk, after having previously created a business desk and reinvented The International Jerusalem Post as an independent news weekly.

From 2006 to 2008 Asa-El led the launch of McGraw/Hill's Hebrew edition of BusinessWeek, and in 2010 he founded the Shalom Hartman Institute's Hebrew-language journal of thought Dorsheni.[2]

A senior editor of The Jerusalem Report, the Middle East's leading English-language newsmagazine, Asa-El has been for the past 20-plus years a frequent commentator of Middle Eastern affairs on Reuters,[3] BBC,[4] CNN,[5] and Israeli TV.[6][7]

Asa-El's weekly column "Middle Israel" ( appears regularly in The Jerusalem Post since 1995, and is a unique attempt to present in English the Israeli centrist's view on anything, from politics and foreign affairs to business, culture, and religion. Asa-El has been quoted or published along the years by The New York Times,[8] The Washington Post,[9] The Wall Street Journal,[10],[11] Politico,[12] USA Today,[13] Haaretz,[14] The Economist,[15] Time magazine,[16] The New Republic,[17] Le Figaro,[18] The Daily Telegraph,[19] L'Express,[20] Azure, Harvard Political Review,[21] The Australian, The Australian Financial Review, Jornal do Brasil, The Times of India, Politiken, and others.

Asa-El's five-part series in The Jerusalem Report about the future of the Jewish people won the Bnai Brith Journalism Award for 2018.[22]

Since 2008 Asa-El has been a columnist for Dow Jones', analyzing the Arab, Turkish, Iranian and Israeli economies as well as global issues like Western demographics,[23] Swiss monetary policy,[24] British unity,[25] and the war in Ukraine.[26]

Asa-El has been invited on lecture tours to the US,[27] Canada,[28] China,[29] Brazil,[30] Australia and New Zealand[31] where he addressed business leaders, diplomats, legislators, journalists, clergy and academic forums on issues relating to Middle Eastern, international and Jewish affairs. His lectures were hosted among others by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Jewish National Fund, Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee, the Canada Israel Committee, the Australia Israel Jewish Affairs Council, United Israel Appeal, Hadassah and Bnai Brith, as well as a variety of universities from Harvard and Columbia to the University of Melbourne and the Royal Military College of Canada.


Amotz Asa-El's The Jewish March of Folly (Yediot, 2019),[32] an interpretation of the Jewish people's political history from antiquity to the dawn of Zionism, has been described[33] as "inspired writing" by Hebrew University and New York University philosopher Prof. Moshe Halbertal; "a must-read for Israel's leaders," by former defense minister and IDF chief-of-staff, Lt-Gen (res.) Moshe Ya'alon; "persuasive, important, and touching" by jurist and former education minister Amnon Rubinstein; "extraordinary and exciting," by former justice minister Dan Meridor; and as "a tour de force—a work with rare breadth and depth," by Saul Singer, co-author of bestseller Start-up Nation.

The Jewish March of Folly reached the nonfiction bestseller lists of Steimatzky in Haaretz and the private bookstores in Yediot, and has topped Ivrit's list for Hebrew nonfiction titles.[34][35][36]

Asa-El's previous book, The Diaspora and the Lost Tribes of Israel (Universe, 2004), a geographic history of the Jewish people, was reviewed by The Wall Street Journal[37] as "an engaging history of the Jewish experience" that "vividly captures the creativity and nomadic quality of the Jewish people."


Asa-El holds graduate degrees in journalism from Columbia University in New York, in Jewish history from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies from Brandeis University outside Boston.

Private life[edit]

He lives in Jerusalem with his wife and their three children.


  1. ^ "Amotz Asa-El". The Jerusalem Post -
  2. ^ Institute, Shalom Hartman. "דרשני 2 - סתיו 2010".
  3. ^ "Israel's Netanyahu clinches coalition deals". 14 March 2013 – via
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ IBA News VOD (2 June 2016). "Amotz Asa-El on IBA News" – via YouTube.
  7. ^ "IBA News".
  8. ^ Sontag, Deborah (9 May 1999). "Leftist Dove Is Netanyahu's Favorite Campaign Target" – via
  9. ^ Booth, William (2014-07-29). "Israelis support Netanyahu and Gaza war, despite rising deaths on both sides". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2019-03-23.
  10. ^ Asa-El, Amotz (26 March 2013). "Shards of a Reputation" – via
  11. ^ "Viewpoint: Israel's lightning rod". 11 November 2005 – via
  12. ^ Asa-El, Amotz (22 September 2016). "Israel, the Switzerland of the Middle East". POLITICO.
  13. ^ "America's Muslims can fight radicalization: Column". USA TODAY.
  14. ^ עשהאל, אמוץ (1 December 2015). "אלו שמבינים בביטחון" – via Haaretz.
  15. ^ "A systemic problem". 3 April 2008 – via The Economist.
  16. ^ Vick, Karl. "Netanyahu Finally Forms a Government, But It's Nearly As Painful As The Election" – via
  17. ^ Republic, The New (29 September 2003). "City of God" – via The New Republic.
  18. ^ "Lettre d'un Israélien à Lionel Jospin". Partito Radicale Nonviolento.
  19. ^ Butcher, Tim (17 January 2009). "Why Arab states are unmoved by plight of Hamas: most fear Muslim militancy despite their dislike of Israel" – via
  20. ^ "Mahmoud Abbas, l'espoir déchu". 9 January 2009.
  21. ^ "Spring 2007". issuu.
  22. ^ "'Post' columnist Asa-El wins B'nai B'rith journalism award - Israel News - Jerusalem Post". 2018-04-26. Retrieved 2019-03-23.
  23. ^ Asa-El, Amotz. "To grow, the rich countries must have more babies". MarketWatch.
  24. ^ Asa-El, Amotz. "What the Swiss should have learned from Stanley Fischer". MarketWatch.
  25. ^ Asa-El, Amotz. "Scotland's independence would be economic, moral disaster". MarketWatch.
  26. ^ Asa-El, Amotz. "U.S. should be neutral on Ukraine". MarketWatch.
  27. ^ Waxman, Andrea (February 24, 2006). "Israeli journalist Amotz Asa-El to visit Milwaukee". The Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle. Archived from the original on 2010-06-03. Retrieved July 5, 2010.
  28. ^ "Le journaliste israélien Amotz Asa-El au Devoir - De l'utopie au pragmatisme". Le Devoir.
  29. ^ "Shanghai: Asia and the Jewish World: A Global Leadership Conversation". Jewish Funders Network.
  30. ^ "Seminário Internacional de Jornalismo". Portal Nacional de Saúde :: Unimed do Brasil :: Eventos.
  31. ^ "Amotz Asa-El: On Israel". Radio New Zealand. 17 March 2011.
  32. ^
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  34. ^
  35. ^
  36. ^
  37. ^ Lefkowitz, Jay (17 March 2005). "Homes Away From Home" – via