Rachel Shabi

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Rachel Shabi
Rachel Shabi, The World Transformed.jpg
Rachel Shabi in 2017
Ramat Gan, Israel
Alma materUniversity of Edinburgh
OccupationJournalist and author

Rachel Shabi is a British journalist and author. She is a contributing writer to The Guardian and the author of Not the Enemy, Israel's Jews from Arab Lands.

Early life[edit]

Born in Israel to Iraqi Jewish parents[1] in Ramat Gan,[2] Shabi grew up in the UK. She studied politics and literature at the University of Edinburgh.


Shabi is a journalist based in the UK, having also reported from the Middle East including on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and from Tunisia and Egypt. As well as focusing on the Middle East, she writes on issues such as progressive politics, the far right, counter-extremism and migration. She is also the author of a book and regularly appears as a commentator on international news channels.

Shabi has written for publications including The Guardian,[3] The New York Times,[4] the London Times, The Independent,[5] Al Jazeera English, Foreign Policy, Prospect and the New Statesman.

Her book, Not the Enemy: Israel's Jews from Arab Lands, was published in 2009. In the work, Shabi argued that Israel has discriminated against and culturally stripped its population of Jews from Arab and Muslim countries. The book received a National Jewish Book Award.

Shabi was shortlisted for the 2011 Orwell journalism prize[6] and was a joint winner in the Press Category of the Anna Lindh Journalist Award for reporting across cultures (for her article "We were looking for a nice, peaceful place near Jerusalem", published by The Guardian) the same year.[7] In 2013, Shabi won the International Media Awards' Cutting Edge Media award.[8]

In September 2017, Iain Dale placed Shabi at No. 30 on his list of 'The 100 Most Influential People on the Left', up sixty places on his previous listing, noting that, "Omnipresent on our screens, the redoubtable Shabi is one of the few Corbyn supporting commentators to be taken seriously by the media. Thoughtful and fluent, she deserves her massive rise in this year's list."[9]

Shabi identifies as an Arab Jew and has lamented the stigmatization of Arab-Jewish culture in Israel.[10]


  • We Look Like the Enemy: The Hidden Story of Israel's Jews from Arab Lands, Bloomsbury Publishing 2009. ISBN 9780802715722


  1. ^ Shabi, Rachel (16 May 2009). "Finding my roots in Tel Aviv". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  2. ^ "Rachel Shabi". www.bloomsbury.com. Bloomsbury Publishing. Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  3. ^ "Profile: Rachel Shabi". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  4. ^ Shabi, Rachel (9 June 2017). "How Jeremy Corbyn Proved the Haters Wrong". The New York Times. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  5. ^ "Profile: Rachel Shabi". The Independent. London. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  6. ^ "Orwell Prize 2011 Shortlists Announced". www.orwellfoundation.com. The Orwell Foundation. 26 April 2011. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  7. ^ "Winners of the 2011 Edition". www.annalindhfoundation.org. Anna Lindh Foundation. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Rachel Shabi wins Cutting Edge Media Award". YouTube. 11 May 2013. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  9. ^ dale, Iain (25 September 2017). "The 100 Most Influential People On The Left: Iain Dale's 2017 List". www.lbc.co.uk. LBC. Retrieved 29 September 2017.
  10. ^ "The loss of inheritance". Gulf News. Retrieved 11 October 2019.