Tim Judah

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Tim Judah in 2012

Tim Judah (born 31 March 1962) is a British writer, reporter and political analyst for The Economist. Judah has written several books on the geopolitics of the Balkans, mainly focusing on Serbia and Kosovo.

Early life[edit]

Tim Judah was born in London in 1962 and was raised in a family of Baghdadi Jewish descent whose tradition maintains they first came to Iraq from the ancient Kingdom of Judah at the time of the Babylonian Exile.[1] His ancestors include Solomon Ma’tuk.[2]

The Judah family was later established in Calcutta as part of the Baghdadi Jewish community before migrating to Britain.[3][4][5][6]

Judah attended Charterhouse school followed by the London School of Economics.[7] He also studied at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.[8]

Based abroad as a foreign correspondent, Judah lived in Bucharest from 1990 to 1991 where he covered the fall of communism for The Times and The Economist.[9] He was based in Belgrade to cover the conflicts surrounding the breakup of the former Yugoslavia.[10] He returned to London in 1995 but continues to travel frequently to the Balkans.[11]

Judah is married to writer and publisher Rosie Whitehouse and has five children, one of whom is the journalist Ben Judah.[12]


Tim Judah began his career at the African service of the BBC World Service.[13]

He has reported from many flashpoints around the world, including the states of the former Yugoslavia, El Salvador, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Niger, Darfur, Uganda, North Korea, Georgia, Armenia, Haiti and Ukraine.[14][15][16]

In 1997, based on his reporting of the Yugoslav Wars Judah criticized "academics imbued with a two dimensional view of the world" such as Francis Fukuyama for discussing the revolutions of 1989 as heralding the end of history.[17]

Judah has been described by The Guardian newspaper as "a distinguished foreign correspondent."[18][19] As a writer his style combines reportage, interviews and history and his main focus, as a journalist, has been on conflict in Africa and Eastern Europe, in particular the Balkans.[20][21][22]

He has written three books on the Balkans region, including The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia published by Yale University Press in 1997 and Kosovo: War And Revenge with the same publisher in 2002.[23] Regarding the Kosovo-Serbia question, Judah writes in his The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia in the section '"Kosovo: Land of Revenge" that the reincorporation of Kosovo to Serbia in 1944 was "the equivalent of reincorporating a cancer into the Serbian body politic".[24]

He was an eyewitness to many of the battles of the Yugoslav Wars including the siege of Dubrovnik and the battle of Vukovar.[25]

Judah is considered an authority on Balkan politics.[26] As a senior visiting fellow at the European Institute of the London School of Economics in 2009, he developed the concept of the Yugosphere.[27][28] He has described the Yugosphere as "a way of describing the renewal of thousands of broken bonds across the former state," a social and political phenomenon with a certain political application.[29]

In the Balkans itself, he is president of the board of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network and a member of the board of the Kosovar Stability Initiative.[30]

Elsewhere in Eastern Europe, Judah has reported on the Euromaidan Revolution and the War in Donbass. His most recent book In Wartime: Stories from Ukraine was published in December 2015.[31]

Judah's work on Africa has included a BBC Radio 4 documentary on Mouridism.[32] His work has also touched on African sporting achievements with his 2008 book Bikila: Ethiopia’s Barefoot Runner shortlisted for the best new sportswriter category in the 2009 British Sports Book Awards.[33][34]

Judah has also worked in 2013 as a regular columnist for Bloomberg.[35]

He has celebrated the Jewish festival of Passover in both Baghdad during the American invasion of 2003 and Donetsk during the Russian invasion of 2014.[36][37]


  • The Serbs: History, Myth, and the Destruction of Yugoslavia. Yale University Press. 2000. ISBN 978-0-300-08507-5.
  • Kosovo: War and Revenge. Yale University Press. 2002. ISBN 978-0-300-09725-2.
  • Bikila: Ethiopia's Barefoot Olympian. Reportage Press. 2008. ISBN 978-0-9558302-1-1.
  • Kosovo: What Everyone Needs to Know. Oxford University Press. 29 August 2008. ISBN 978-0-19-974103-8.
  • In Wartime: Stories from Ukraine. Allen Lane / Penguin. 1 December 2015. ISBN 978-0241198827.


  1. ^ Bataween (11 April 2006). "Passover pilgrimage to Ezekiel's tomb in Iraq". Point of No Return. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Ma'tuk, Sulayman ben David". www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  3. ^ Seierstad, Asne (24 April 2009). A Hundred and One Days: A Baghdad Journal. Basic Books. ISBN 9780786736829.
  4. ^ "Passover in Baghdad". Granta Magazine. 1 July 2003. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Ben Judah: The last of our synagogues". The Jewish Chronicle. 3 January 2017. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  6. ^ Bataween (28 July 2017). "Point of No Return: Jewish Refugees from Arab and Muslim Countries: Why don't Jews remember their Sephardi heroes?". Point of No Return. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  7. ^ Tim Judah [@timjudah1] (7 December 2015). "Waiting to discuss Ukraine 🇺🇦 at LSE (studied IR here) in the Old Theatre...#LSEukraine .@LSEIRDept .LSEpublicevents" (Tweet) – via Twitter.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  8. ^ "Belgrade Security Forum :: Tim Judah". Archived from the original on 10 October 2017. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  9. ^ "Tim Judah". Pulitzer Center. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  10. ^ "Tim Judah". Pulitzer Center. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  11. ^ "Tim Judah". Pulitzer Center. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  12. ^ "Snowden, Syria, Vladimir Putin's 'Cold Peace' with the West | CBC News".
  13. ^ Telegraph, Alex Harris webmaster@jewishtelegraph.com - Jewish. "A JEWISH TELEGRAPH NEWSPAPER". www.jewishtelegraph.com. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  14. ^ "Tim Judah".
  15. ^ "OUR TEAM". The Judah Edition. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  16. ^ "Tim Judah: Biography". 19 April 2006. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  17. ^ Judah, Tim (1997). "The Serbs: The Sweet and Rotten Smell of History". Daedalus. 126 (3): 23–45. JSTOR 20027440.
  18. ^ Adams, Tim (24 January 2016). "This Is London: Life and Death in the World City by Ben Judah – review". the Guardian. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  19. ^ "Financial Times Magazine interviews Cara Fellows : Cara". www.cara.ngo. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  20. ^ "Tim Judah".
  21. ^ "The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia, by Tim Judah (Yale University Press, £8.99 in UK)". The Irish Times.
  22. ^ "Tim Judah's 'Wartime' offers historical context, stories from the conflict in Ukraine". Chicago Tribune. 12 October 2016.
  23. ^ Chotiner, Isaac (18 October 2016). "How Putin Won Crimea, and Lost Ukraine". Slate. ISSN 1091-2339. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  24. ^ Judah, Tim (2008). The Serbs: History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-14784-1. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  25. ^ "THE SERBS". The Judah Edition. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  26. ^ Stephen, Chris (2 December 2017). "Security clampdown at The Hague amid fears of further suicides". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  27. ^ Yugosphere PDF
  28. ^ "Tim Judah - Georgina Capel Associates ltd". Georgina Capel Associates ltd. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  29. ^ "THE YUGOSPHERE". The Judah Edition. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  30. ^ "Tim Judah - Board members - IKS". www.iksweb.org. Archived from the original on 18 March 2017.
  31. ^ "In Wartime by Tim Judah: 9780451495495 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books".
  32. ^ Judah, Tim (4 August 2011). "Islam's mystical entrepreneurs". BBC News. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  33. ^ "Tim Judah". Pulitzer Center. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  34. ^ "They are made a spectacle unto the world | The Spectator". The Spectator. 23 July 2008. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  35. ^ Judah, Tim (July 2013). "Articles by Tim Judah - Bloomberg View". www.bloomberg.com. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  36. ^ Judah, Tim. "Ukraine: The Phony War?". The New York Review of Books. Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  37. ^ Bataween (11 April 2006). "Passover pilgrimage to Ezekiel's tomb in Iraq". Point of No Return. Retrieved 6 August 2018.


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