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Hamburger Well Done

Jewcy contributor Aaron Hamburger stares down the chauvinism at Shmuel Rosner's Ha'aretz blog, wherein writers far and wide mail in their questions. Aaron and Shmuel had a bit of a sparring match, too: There are a few things in your … Read More

By / July 17, 2007

Jewcy contributor Aaron Hamburger stares down the chauvinism at Shmuel Rosner's Ha'aretz blog, wherein writers far and wide mail in their questions. Aaron and Shmuel had a bit of a sparring match, too:

There are a few things in your column that I think should be cleared up. Your sentence "Hamburger himself evinced enough interest in Israel to stay in the country a few weeks and then write a book set there," is misleading because it implies that my background on issues relating to Israel is that of a first-time novice. I have been to Israel more than a dozen times in my life. My family and I rented a house there one summer. I have cousins there. My brother married an Israeli woman and we visited her family several times as well. In writing Faith for Beginners, however, I did not rely solely on my own experience of Israel. I also did copious research and cited a few of my sources in the back of my book. I don't know what you mean by "Hamburger has said in the past that he is interested only in Americans." (Maybe it would help if you quoted my words directly.) However, if that statement were literally true, why would I write two books set outside of America, first in Prague, then in Israel? Yes, my focus is on America and Americans and the way we deal with the world in an age when American decisions have such profound ripple effects, but certainly not to the exclusion of all others. Anyway, isn't it natural for me to focus on Americans since I am American myself?

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