About Haim Watzman

Haim Watzman is a Jerusalem-based writer, journalist, and translator, and co-author, with Gershom Gorenberg, of the South Jerusalem blog. He is the author of Company C: An American's Life as a Citizen-Soldier in Israel (Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2005) and A Crack in the Earth: A Journey Up Israel's Rift Valley (Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2007). Haim was born in 1956 in Cleveland, Ohio and grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland. After receiving a B.A. from Duke University he moved to Israel, where he has lived since 1978 and worked as a freelance translator and journalist. His translations include Tom Segev's The Seventh Million, Elvis in Jerusalem, and One Palestine Complete, as well as David Grossman's The Yellow Wind, Sleeping on a Wire, and Death as a Way of Life. As a journalist, he has written from Israel for The Chronicle of Higher Education, the British science journal Nature and other publications. Links to articles of interest can be found here. Haim currently writes the monthly Necessary Stories column for The Jerusalem Report. He lives in Jerusalem with his wife, Ilana, and four children: Mizmor, a student; Asor, a soldier; and Niot and Misgav, high school students. He is an active member of Kehilat Yedidya, a liberal Orthodox community equally concerned about democracy in Israeli society and traditional Jewish values. Contact Haim by e-mail at hwatzman@gmail.com. Photo of Haim Watzman by Debbi Cooper

Cold Feet–Why Israeli Voters Shouldn’t Get Their Fantasy Government

By February 17, 2009

The talk in the locker room at the Jerusalem Pool has been surprisingly conciliatory since the election last week. Dani, who voted Meretz (after seriously considering Hadash) and Siman, who voted Likud, agree that the next coalition should consist of … Read More

Drawing the Line

By February 9, 2009

The sad story about the election Israel will hold tomorrow is that, no matter what the precise results, the balance of power will be held by a group of legislators contemptuous of the principles of democracy. Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beitenu … Read More

Go Green!

By February 5, 2009

Two months ago, I announced that I’d decided to vote for the Green Movement. I urged the Greens to form a joint slate with MK Michael Melchior’s Meimad party—and they did. And since then, silence. Where the hell have I … Read More

Biblical Bellylaughs

By January 28, 2009

”Humor in the Tanakh”, Daniel Saunders promises us on Jewcy. And what a relief to find some lighthearted biblical exegesis amidst the posts like Jamie Sneider’s account of interfaith sex with her not yet ex-husband, Mia Rut’s three-way date with … Read More

The Cliche Expert Visits Gaza

By January 22, 2009

With apologies to Frank Sullivan Q: Why Magnus Arbuthnot! How unexpected to see you in South Jerusalem! What brings you here? A: I have been sent by a respected and impartial NGO to investigate the carnage inflicted by Israel in … Read More

Let Them Rage: Why Anti-Zionists Should Be Allowed to Run

By January 13, 2009

If it weren’t the fact that the fracas at yesterday’s meeting of Israel’s Central Election Committee was theater rather than serious deliberation, I might be more upset about the decision to bar from contesting the coming election two of the … Read More

Tough Love: The Moral Choices in the Gaza War

By January 6, 2009

One series of questions posed to Israeli soldiers in discussions of war ethics goes something like this: If you were ordered to blow up a house where a terrorist commander was hiding, and you had reason to believe that enemy … Read More

No Happy Endings in Gaza

By December 30, 2008

I’ve got war refugees in my home today. I mean my daughter’s fellow second-year students from the animation program at Sapir College, located right next to Sderot. The campus is under fire and has shut its gates, so these budding … Read More