Ofer Shelah

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Ofer Shelah
עופר שלח1.jpg
Date of birth (1960-02-09) 9 February 1960 (age 60)
Place of birthKiryat Bialik, Israel
Knessets19, 20, 21, 22, 23
Faction represented in Knesset
2013–2019Yesh Atid
2019–2020Blue and White
2020–Yesh Atid

Ofer Shelah (Hebrew: עֹפֶר שֶׁלַח, born 9 February 1960) is an Israeli journalist and politician. He has served as a member of the Knesset for Yesh Atid since 2013.


Shelah was born in Kiryat Bialik. He started his Israel Defense Forces service in 1977 as a paratrooper in the Paratroopers Brigade, and in 1979 became an officer after completing Officer Candidate School. He served as a platoon leader and as an executive officer in the paratroopers,[1] and took part in various raids against PLO camps in Lebanon. After he was honourably discharged he fought as a platoon leader and as company commander in reserve Paratroopers Brigade[2] in the 1982 Lebanon War and lost an eye in Lebanon in 1983.[3] He later published a book about his experiences, Guf Sheni (Hebrew: Second Person; lit. second body‎).


Shelah subsequently completed a BA in Economic and English Literature at Tel Aviv University and an MA in Literature and Creative Writing at New York University.[4]


He started worked as a journalist for the mainstream daily' 'Maariv in 1988, later moving to its competitor Yedioth Ahronoth, as well as hosting television news and sports programs. As a journalist, Shelah specialized in writing about security issues and on sports.[5]

Political career[edit]

Prior to the 2013 Knesset elections Shelah joined the new Yesh Atid party, and was placed sixth on its list.[6] He was elected to the Knesset as the party won 19 seats. During his first time, he was a member of the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee.[4] He was placed sixth on the party's list for the 2015 elections,[7] and was re-elected as the party won 11 seats.

Shelah lives in Moshav Ginaton, and is widowed with two children.[5]


  1. ^ Incoming chief IDF rabbi vows to 'respect all faiths, races and sexual orientations' Israel Hayom, 14 July 2016
  2. ^ Gal Perl Finkel, Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water, The Jerusalem Post, August 09, 2018.
  3. ^ How to win a modern war The Jerusalem Post, 7 September 2016
  4. ^ a b Ofer Shelah Knesset
  5. ^ a b All the kingmaker’s men, and women Times of Israel, 23 January 2013
  6. ^ Yesh Atid Central Elections Committee
  7. ^ Yesh Atid list Central Elections Committee

External links[edit]