Mordechai Kedar

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Mordechai Kedar in 2015

Mordechai Kedar (Hebrew: מרדכי קידר; born November 25, 1952) is an Israeli scholar of Arab culture and a lecturer at Bar-Ilan University, and the vice president of NEWSRAEL.[1]


Mordechai Kedar was born in Tel Aviv.[2] His Polish-Jewish parents moved to Mandatory Palestine in the 1930s.[2] Kedar's first language was Yiddish.[2]

Kedar is a Religious Zionist and an expert in Israeli Arab culture. He served for 25 years in IDF Military Intelligence, where he specialized in Islamic groups, the political discourse of Arab countries, the Arabic press and mass media, and the Syrian domestic arena.[3]

He holds a Ph.D. from Bar-Ilan University. He is fluent in Hebrew, Arabic, and English. He is described as "one of the few Arabic-speaking Israeli pundits seen on Arabic satellite channels defending Israel".[4]

Peace proposal[edit]

Since 2012, Kedar has promoted a Palestinian-Israeli peace plan referred to as the "Palestinian Emirates" or "Eight-State Solution".[5]

According to Kedar, "The eight-state solution is based on the sociology of the Middle East, which has the tribe as the major cornerstone of society. We should follow this characteristic of Middle Eastern culture as the basis for the Israeli-Palestinian solution."[6] He says that the Western-style nation-state structures imposed on regions inhabited by multiple tribes such as Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and Libya are failed or failing, whereas states based on homogenous tribes such as the United Arab Emirates can succeed.[7]

The eight Palestinian city-states would be the Gaza Strip, Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah, Jericho, Tulkarm, Qalqilya, and the Arab part of Hebron, all of which he says possess traditional tribal leadership structures capable of transitioning to a self-governing emirate. Geographically, each emirate would govern its city and surrounding land. Each state could independently decide its own form of government, make its own laws, educate its own people, and print its own currency if it wishes, as well as have its own media, develop its own industry and commerce, or have its people find employment within Israel. This structure gives control and responsibility to local residents to decide their own future.[8]

Kedar says this proposal would result in self-governance and self-determination for the vast majority of Palestinian Arabs, with the remaining (sparsely populated) area of the West Bank to be annexed by Israel and its residents offered Israeli citizenship. As part of the arrangement, Israel would provide free passage of people and goods between each city-state and internationally. This proposal also satisfies Israeli security concerns, retaining strategic depth and minimizing the threat of rockets or terror tunnels.[9]

Views and opinions[edit]

Status of Jerusalem[edit]

Kedar said in June 2008, on Al Jazeera, that, "Jerusalem belongs to the Jews, period".[10][11]

Rape as deterrent against suicide bombers[edit]

In July 2014, he said that threats to kill or imprison terrorists are an ineffective deterrent stating: "the only thing that deters them is if they know that their sister or their mother will be raped in the event that they are caught."[12][13] A further joint statement by Kedar and Bar-Ilan University further clarified his point, stating "he did not call and is not calling to fight terror except by legal and moral means", and that:

"[Kedar] wanted to illustrate that there is no means of deterring suicide bombers, and using hyperbole, he gave the rape of women as an example. In order to remove all doubt: Dr. Kedar's words do not, God forbid, contain a recommendation to commit such despicable acts. The intention was to describe the culture of death of the terror organizations. Dr. Kedar was describing the bitter reality of the Middle East and the inability of a modern and liberal law-abiding country to fight against the terror of suicide bombers."[14]

Dr. Kedar wrote an article about this issue. On Rape, the Culture of Shame - and Radio Interviews

Speaking engagements[edit]

In December 2014, the Finchley United Synagogue in London cancelled a speech by Kedar that had been organized through the local chapter of the Zionist Federation. On the same week, scheduled appearances at three Jewish schools were cancelled after protests regarding his association with Pamela Geller, an anti-Islam organizer from the U.S., who was banned from the U.K. the previous year. The cancellation was met with mixed reactions; the federation chair defended Kedar, and said that he had been the victim of a smear campaign, while political scientist Michael Pinto-Duschinsky said that Kedar was "toxic for interfaith relations" in the U.K.[15] Kedar has been on the board of advisors of Geller's organization Stop Islamization of Nations (SION).[16]

Conspiracy theories[edit]

In a rally to support Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu on the 30th of October 2019, Kedar raised a conspiracy theory and suggested Yigal Amir is not the assassin of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. That idea was rejected publicly by Prime Minister Netanyahu on the following day. [see ]

Published works[edit]

  • Asad in Search of Legitimacy: Messages and Rhetoric in the Syrian Press under Hafiz and Bashar, Sussex Academic Press (July 2005).


  1. ^ "SPECIAL VIDEO: Dr. Mordechai Kedar, Middle East expert and VP of NEWSRAEL on Al-Jezzera in Arabic". Retrieved 2022-07-30.
  2. ^ a b c L'Chayim (2015): Mordechai Kedar.
  3. ^ "Lt. Col. (res.) Dr. Mordechai Kedar". The Begin–Sadat Center for Strategic Studies. Bar-Ilan University. Archived from the original on June 18, 2008. Retrieved 2011-04-08.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  4. ^ Edmund Sanders (June 26, 2011). "Israel urged to speak directly to Arab world". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on August 11, 2011. Retrieved October 7, 2011.
  5. ^ Barry Shaw (December 6, 2012). "Original Thinking: Palestinian Emirates (Part 1)". The Jerusalem Post. Archived from the original on August 8, 2014. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
  6. ^ Rachel Avraham (March 20, 2014). "Dr. Mordechai Kedar: "The Eight State Solution is the Best"". Foreign Policy Association. Archived from the original on August 8, 2014. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
  7. ^ "Americans (Still) don't understand the Middle East. This man wants to help. – Chicago Policy Review". 28 July 2015. Archived from the original on 2017-01-11. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  8. ^ Barry Shaw (December 13, 2012). "Thoughts on Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Part II". The Jerusalem Post. Archived from the original on August 8, 2014. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
  9. ^ Mordechai Kedar. "THE EIGHT STATE SOLUTION". Canadian Institute for Jewish Research. Archived from the original on 2014-08-08. Retrieved 2014-08-01.
  10. ^ "Video: Dr. Mordechai Kedar on Al-Jazeera". Archived from the original on 2014-07-26. Retrieved 2014-07-27.
  11. ^ "Video: Al-Jazeera host Jamal Rayyan confirms that Jerusalem is not mentioned in the Koran". YouTube. Archived from the original on 2017-08-06. Retrieved 2016-05-04.
  12. ^ The Huffington Post, Suicide Bombers 'Only Deterred By Threat Of Rape Of Sisters And Wives', Israeli Academic Says Archived 2014-08-10 at the Wayback Machine, 23/07/2014
  13. ^ Dr. Mordechai Kedar: How to stop suicide bombings Archived 2014-07-31 at the Wayback Machine (vídeo)
  14. ^ Haaretz, Israeli professor's 'rape as terror deterrent' statement draws ire Archived 2014-08-02 at the Wayback Machine, 22/07/2014
  15. ^ U.K. synagogue bars controversial Israeli academic speaker: Dr Mordechai Kedar of Bar Ilan University is associated with anti-Islam activist Pamela Geller, who was banned from Britain last year Archived 2017-03-30 at the Wayback Machine, Haaretz (December 8, 2014).
  16. ^ "Stop Islamization of Nations (SION) Calls on UN to Protect Christians of Syria". Press Release from PR Newswire. Reuters. 2012-01-20. Archived from the original on 2013-12-02. Retrieved 2014-12-21.