Ari Shavit

Ari Shavit
ארי שביט
Ari Shavit.tif
Born (1957-11-26) 26 November 1957 (age 65)
Rehovot, Israel
Alma materHebrew University of Jerusalem
  • Writer
  • journalist
Known for
  • Columnist at Haaretz
  • Author of the award-winning 2013 book My Promised Land

Ari Shavit (Hebrew: ארי שביט; born 16 November 1957) is an Israeli reporter and writer. Shavit was a senior correspondent at the left-of-center Israeli newspaper Haaretz before he resigned when a pattern of sexual misconduct came to public attention.

A self-described left-wing journalist[1] and anti-occupation peacenik,[2] Shavit is the author of the 2013 New York Times Best Seller My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel.


Shavit was born in Rehovot, Israel, and studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. His father was a scientist and his mother was an artist. Some of his ancestors were early leading Zionists.[3]

Shavit was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces in 1975. He volunteered as a paratrooper in the Paratroopers Brigade. He served as a squad leader[4] and took part in various raids against armed Palestinian organizations and camps in Lebanon, including Operation Litani.


Known for his left-wing journalism,[1] Shavit has been a columnist for Haaretz since 1995.[5] His work has also appeared in The New Yorker,[6] The New York Times,[7] and Politico.[8]

Shavit describes himself as an "antioccupation peacenik".[2] He is particularly critical of right-wing Israeli politicians, such as Avigdor Lieberman, who he argues is only loyal to Russia and to Putin.[9] Shavit is also critical of Miri Regev, describing her as 'anti-culture', and of Ayelet Shaked, describing her as 'anti-democracy'.[10]

He has for many years been a critic of Benjamin Netanyahu. Although admitting that Netanyahu is highly intelligent, Shavit argues that Netanyahu "scorns [US] Democrat politicians and liberal intellectuals... as weaklings." Shavit also castigates Netanyahu for not being "a civil leader who truly cares for the welfare of his citizens. He [Netanyahu] is unconcerned by social justice."[11]

In 2013, Shavit released My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel. It was a New York Times Best Seller[12] and received widespread acclaim. The New York Times listed My Promised Land in its "100 Notable Books of 2013",[13] The Economist named it as one of the best books of 2013,[14] it received the Gerrard and Ella Berman Memorial Award in History from the Jewish Book Council,[15][16] and it won the Natan Book Award.[17] In September 2014, Shavit traveled to Cleveland, Ohio to accept the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award[18] in nonfiction for My Promised Land, and delivered a talk at the Cleveland City Club[19] about the necessity of American leadership in the Middle East. The book received many positive reviews, as well as criticism from both the left, including from Norman Finkelstein,[20][21] and from the right, including from Martin Kramer.[22][23]


In 2016, charges of sexual misconduct involving groping of women in the workplace surfaced, forcing Shavit to apologize and resign from his positions at Haaretz and Channel 10.[24]

Shavit was temporarily suspended from the Haaretz newspaper after he was accused of sexual harassment by American-Jewish journalist Danielle Berrin ('Hollywood Jew'), who wrote a cover story on the subject in the Los Angeles Jewish Journal.[25] Shavit, initially claimed the incident was merely flirting, saying "I apologize from the bottom of my heart for this misunderstanding. I did not mean to say anything unwelcome to Berrin".[26] In response, Shelly Yachimovich wrote: "I don't know if Berrin accepted his apology, but I didn't... It's not like he accidentally stepped on somebody's toe."[27] In response to the allegations, Shavit announced that he was taking time off from his journalism.[28]

A member of the staff of the Jewish organization J Street then stepped forward to say that while she was arranging speaking engagements for Shavit he had caressed her hand and propositioned her with the suggestion that they go out for drinks.[29][30] Shavit then resigned.[29][31]



  • Shavit, Ari (2013). My promised land : the triumph and tragedy of Israel. Random House.

Essays and reporting

  • Shavit, Ari (21 October 2013). "Lydda, 1948 : a city, a massacre, and the Middle East today". Dept. of History. The New Yorker. Vol. 89, no. 33. pp. 40–46.

Critical studies and reviews of Shavit's work

  • Garner, Dwight (19 November 2013). "Son of Israel, Caught in the Middle". The New York Times. In the end, he plaintively says: "I wonder how long we can maintain our miraculous survival story. One more generation? Two? Three? Eventually the hand holding the sword must loosen its grip. Eventually the sword itself will rust. No nation can face the world surrounding it for over a hundred years with a jutting spear."
  • Wieseltier, Leon (21 November 2013). "The State of Israel". The New York Times. It is one of the achievements of Ari Shavit's important and powerful book to recover the feeling of Israel's facticity and to revel in it, to restore the grandeur of the simple fact in full view of the complicated facts.
  • Fischer, Elli (January 2014). "Israel for Me, Not for Thee". Commentary. Shavit and the secular, social-democratic Ashkenazic tribe that created the state in their image and dominated the first three decades of its existence must be allowed to lament the loss of their Israel..
  • Tim, Holmes (29 May 2014). "Ari Shavit's Resuscitation of Liberal Zionism is Doomed". New Left Project. Archived from the original on 23 December 2017. Retrieved 2 April 2018. of Shavit's principal tasks is to defend ethnic cleansing. So observes Israel-Palestine scholar and serial debunker of fraudulent history Norman Finkelstein in Old Wine, Broken Bottle: Ari Shavit's Promised Land, a slim volume that takes Shavit's book apart. Inevitably failing to stake out any serious ethical justification for the Palestinian Nakba [...], Shavit instead relies on rhetorical puffery, resurrecting some of the crudest tropes of colonial-era racism.


  1. ^ a b Abrams, Elliott. "Politics and Prophecy". Jewish Review of Books. Vol. Spring 2014. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  2. ^ a b Whitford, David; Elkind, Peter (12 December 2013). "Promise – and potential – in Israel". Fortune.
  3. ^ "Promise – and potential – in Israel". Fortune. Retrieved 1 February 2020.
  4. ^ Ari Shavit, My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel. Random House Publishing Group. 19 November 2013, pp xi.
  5. ^ Shavit, My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel, p. xiii.
  6. ^ Shavit, Ari (14 October 2013). "Lydda, 1948". The New Yorker.
  7. ^ "The Old Peace Is Dead, but a New Peace Is Possible". The New York Times. 12 March 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  8. ^ "Is Israel Losing Its Soul?". Politico. 20 March 2015. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  9. ^ Shavit, Ari (30 December 2010). "Lieberman Can Feel at Home at the Kremlin". Haaretz.
  10. ^ Shavit, Ari (1 January 2016). "Israel's Center-left Must Seize the Day After the Awful 20153". Haaretz.
  11. ^ Shavit, Ari (8 March 2015). "Netanyahu's Churchill Complex". Politico.
  12. ^ "Best Sellers". The New York Times. 8 December 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  13. ^ "100 Notable Books of 2013". The New York Times. 27 November 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  14. ^ "Torrents of words". The Economist. 7 December 2013. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  15. ^ "2013 National Jewish Book Awards Announced". Jewish Book Council. 15 January 2014. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
  16. ^ "Past Winners". Jewish Book Council. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  17. ^ Sela, Maya (3 June 2013). "Haaretz Columnist Ari Shavit Wins U.S. Literary Prize for Book on Israel". Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  18. ^ "My Promised Land – Anisfield-Wolf". Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  19. ^ "My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel | The City Club of Cleveland | September 12, 2014". City Club of Cleveland. 12 September 2014.
  20. ^ Finkelstein, Norman. "Old Wine, Broken Bottle - OR Books". OR Books.
  21. ^ Slater, Jerome (19 December 2013). "Jerome Slater: On the US and Israel: Unforgivable: Ari Shavit's My Promised Land and Its Acclaim in the United States". Jerome Slater: On the US and Israel. Archived from the original on 29 March 2014 – via
  22. ^ Kramer, Martin (July 2014). "What Happened at Lydda" (PDF). Mosaic Magazine – via
  23. ^ Kramer, Martin (July 2014). "What Happened at Lydda". Mosaic Magazine.
  24. ^ Beaumont, Peter (31 October 2016). "Ari Shavit quits media roles after sexual harassment accusations". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 November 2016.
  25. ^ Yitahak, Yoav (27 October 2016). ארי שביט הוא החשוד בהטרדה מינית של עיתונאית אמריקנית [Ari Shavit is suspected of sexually harassing an American journalist]. News1 (in Hebrew).
  26. ^ "Journalist Ari Shavit admits he's accused of assault, apologizes for 'misunderstanding'". Times of Israel. 27 October 2016.
  27. ^ Zeveloff, 28 October 2016, Naomi. "Ari Shavit 'Sorry' for Trump-Style Sex Assault. Many Israelis Aren't Buying It". The Forward. Jerusalem.
  28. ^ "Ari Shavit: I'm Taking Time Off From My Journalistic Work". Haaretz. Retrieved 29 October 2016.
  29. ^ a b Mitnick, Joshua (30 October 2016). "After an L.A. reporter accused him of sexual assault, a top Israeli newspaper columnist steps down". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 November 2016.
  30. ^ Zeveloff, Naomi (30 October 2016). "J Street Staffer Is Second Woman to Accuse Ari Shavit of Sexual Harassment". The Forward – via Haaretz.
  31. ^ "Ari Shavit Resigns Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations". Haaretz. 30 October 2016.

External links

  • Official website
  • Ari Shavit: Apocalypse now, apocalypse forever
  • "'Promised Land' Wrestles With Israel's Brutal Contradictions". NPR. 18 November 2013.
  • "Tom Friedman tells Obama and Netanyahu: Read Ari Shavit's book". Haaretz. 17 November 2013.
  • Saving the Promised Land, Fathom: For a deeper understanding of Israel and the region, 2 June 2014
  • Ari Shavit: Triumph by treachery towards the Promised Land
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