November 18, 2018

Two Nice Jewish Boys Episode 115: Cross Episode With Rosner’s Domain — The Aftermath of Pittsburgh

Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks
Two Nice Jewish Boys discuss the aftermath of the Pittsburgh attack, Israeli and Diaspora Jewish relations, and much more in this cross over episode with Shmuel Rosner of Rosner’s Domain.

Two Nice Jewish Boys Episode 113 – The Dark Side of Innovation

Hi-tech and innovation have brought many good things to the world. Social media connected us to one another and in doing so gave power to the citizens of the world. Search engines gave us access to knowledge and the day may come when autonomous cars will rid us of accidents on the road and save millions of lives.

But start-ups may also have dark sides. Facebook helped, unwittingly, spread fake news and foreign governments used it to intervene in the democratic process in America. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are used for drug and weapon trafficking, far from the eyes of law enforcement. And then there’s privacy. It’s that thing we used to have, and maybe never will again.

So innovation goes both ways. That we know. But what happens when companies innovate to provide tools for governments to intercept their citizens’ activities, extract information about them and maybe ultimately – prosecute them and violate their basic human rights?

In recent years more and more Israeli companies are blamed for doing exactly that. In a huge investigative report on Haaretz – one of Israel’s leading newspapers, reporters Hagar Shezaf and Yonathan Yakobzon, delved into the dark pasts of a few of these companies. What they found was alarming. Hagar Shezaf of Haaretz, joins us today to talk about the investigation and the piece she co-wrote.

The report on Haaretz
Hagar’s pieces on Haaretz
Hagar Shezaf on Twitter

Hot Take: Shmuel Rosner on the volatile situation in the Middle East

Check out this episode!

Shmuel Rosner: In the Mideast, a dangerous summer ahead

Jewish Journal Political Editor and New York Times contributor Shmuel Rosner helps us make sense of a Middle East that is getting more dangerous and complicated by the day.

Check out this episode!

Dr. Micah Goodman: Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

Israeli scholar Micah Goodman weighs in on the world’s most intractable conflict — and his ideas for a solution. He explains it all in his bestselling new book, Catch 67, which uses philosophical insights to tackle the Israel–Palestinian conflict.

“Everyone always talks about solving or not solving the conflict. What about shrinking the conflict?” -Dr. Micah Goodman


David Suissa and Dr. Micah Goodman in the studios

From left: David Suissa and Dr. Micah Goodman

Check out this episode!

Episode 65 – Behind the Scenes of Binary Options

Over the last decade, in Israel, Binary Options has become a term that carries with it a heavy stigma of fraud and theft and is generally associated with shady people. But it hasn’t always been like that. For a long time, for many people, it was just another sector of the financial industry which was raking in A LOT of dough. It actually provided an opportunity for many people who otherwise struggled to make a living in Israel, an opportunity to make good money, fast!

On the 23rd of March, 2016, Simona Weinglass, a reporter for the Times of Israel, wrote an expose of the Binary Options industry. In it, she described a world that thrived on deception, illegal activity, and ultimately on preying on the weak.

Since her exposé in the Times of Israel, Simona has been covering the battle against Binary Options in Israel’s Parliament. Today, the industry is well on its way to being taken down.

This episode is a rerun from a year ago (ep 14) when Simona joined us to talk about this dark industry and how she came to uncover it.

For her original exposé on the industry:

And for more of Simona Weinglass: simona-weinglass/

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Episode 64 – The Man who Discovers Planets

For thousands of years astronomers have been looking up to the sky, trying to understand what the hell’s going on up there. In the last 50 years technology has led to tremendous breakthroughs, and yet, we are still very far from solving the most essential of questions: how was all this created?

Prof. Tzevi Mazeh from Tel Aviv University has been trying to find answers to these questions for over 40 years. He was a guest researcher in Harvard, and as an astronomer, Prof. Mazeh took part in many important discoveries of stars, planets and other space phenomena.

Prof. Mazeh published the book “introduction to the Theory of Relativity”, and co-edited the book “Drishat Shalom”, a collection of articles about peace and justice from a biblical perspective.

Prof. Mazeh was also the chair of the political jewish-left-wing movement “Netivot Shalom”.

Prof. Mazeh is one of the most popular lecturers in Tel Aviv University, and apart from being a leading astrophysicist, he is also an expert in the history of Astronomy. And apart from that, he has also been teaching Talmud for many years.

Prof. Mazeh joins 2NJB today to talk about his out-of-this-world career.

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Episode 63 – Candies from Heaven: Tales of a Jerusalem Boy

Jews have been longing for Jerusalem for two thousand years. But in the 19th century only a few were courageous enough, some might say crazy enough, to take everything and leave their homes to the Holy Land.

And that’s exactly what several poor Yemenite families did. They walked by foot from Sanaa to Jerusalem, only to find out that the Holy city is actually a dump.

Gil Hovav’s ancestors were one of these families, and when a few generations later, Yemenite Jew Moshe Hovav Married the granddaughter of Eliezer Ben Yehuda, reviver of the Hebrew language – Gil Hovav was the result.

Gil grew up amidst a clash of cultures, which took place in a city torn apart by wars and religion. His fascinating childhood is the subject of his autobiographical book, Candies From Heaven, which was just now released in English.

Gil is one of Israel’s greatest experts in food and food culture. Gil has been a regular guest in every Israeli household for over 20 years. He’s a pioneer of the televised cooking shows here in Israel. He’s a food journalist and author of many cooking books and some novels as well.

Gil joins us for the second time to talk about his amazing childhood in Jerusalem.

Gil’s book Candies From Heaven on Amazon

Gil’s Facebook page

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Episode 55: Grammy Award-winning hip hop violinist Miri Ben Ari

Today we have the privilege to talk with Miri Ben Ari, aka the Hip Hop Violinist, and probably one of the most famous and influential Israelis to hit the contemporary international music scene.

Miri was born in Tel Aviv and where she grew up playing classical music since the age of 5. Her encounter with world renowned violinist Isaac Stern brought her towards the violin, and ever since then her romance with this instrument flourished.

Following her military service in the IDF string quartet, she moved to New York to study jazz. She played gigs and worked hard and after some time it all paid off, when Jay-Z noticed her talent and invited her to play with him. She then went on to extraordinary accomplishments like playing with Wyclef at Carnegie hall, co-writing Jesus Walks with Kanye West (which got her the Grammy) and being featured in four tracks on his debut album, releasing her own debut album The Hip Hop Violinist, Performing on David Letterman’s late night, performing for Barack and Michelle Obama at the White House and the list goes on and on and on.

In addition to all that, Ben Ari has devoted her life to social causes. She is a UN ambassador of Music, and Her NGO Gedenk has set as its mission to educate American youth about the Holocaust.

We are so honored to have Miri Ben Ari with us today.

Miri Ben Ari’s website and Facebook page

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Episode 52 – Porn for Jews with Sarah Rosen

From ridiculous rumors about having sex through a hole in the sheet to (ironically named) anti-sex icons like Woody Allen, for much of history, Judaism and Jews have suffered from the racist perception that they have a lower libido or are all together a-sexual.

Until one day, not so long ago, one nice Jewish girl from new York, Sarah Rosen, decided to change that, as to prove to the world the one and only absolute truth, that Jewish is sexy as hell. Her small blog porn4jews, became a hit and got huge exposure, which led to a successful book by the same title.

Sarah is visiting Israel with the help of the Schusterman foundation, and she was kind enough to join us.

Porn4Jews – WebsiteFacebookInstagramTwitter

Kosher Porn – the Book

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Episode 39 – The yeshiva kid who made it big … in China

Dr. Shmulik Hess is the CEO of Valin Technologies and he joins 2NJB to talk about his amazing life story and his inspiring career.

Episode 37 – Nobel Prize Laureate Prof. Dan Shechtman and the discovery that changed his life

Progress entails change. However, the establishment generally rejects change. This is the challenge that pioneers face in all fields and this was the challenge that Professor Dan Shechtman faced upon his discovery of quasiperiodic crystals, or quasicrystals. Ultimately, this discovery would lead Dr. Shechtman to the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2011 but not before a long and often arduous journey.

Professor Dan Shechtman was kind enough to invite 2NJB to his home to talk about his life, his career and of course, the Nobel Prize.

Episode 36: Mai Shbeta, the Jewish-Israeli-Muslim-Palestinian peace activist

She’s a sort of “peace incarnate.” A representation of what comes of abandoning hate and sectarianism for love and unity. Mai Shbeta is the daughter of a Jewish mother and Muslim father. According to Jewish religious law, she’s a Jew. According to Islam, she’s a Muslim. However, often the members of both faiths choose to see her as an outside – they see the differences rather than the similarities.

This reality has driven Mai Shbeta to spend her time working diligently towards peace. She’s presented at the World Economic forum in Davos in 2011 and, recently completing a law degree at the Bar Ilan University, she has her eyes set on the advancement of Human Rights. Mai joins 2NJB today to talk about her life and career.

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Podcast – FAUDA: the Israeli Netflix TV hit with co-creator Avi Issacharoff

Fauda is currently streaming on Netflix. Photo courtesy of Netflix.

From HBO’s In Treatment to Showtime’s Homeland, Israel has become a prominent exporter of quality content for the American television industry. As an emerging studio, Netflix wasn’t about to miss out. They set their eyes on Fauda.

Fauda is one of the most successful and critically acclaimed Israeli TV shows in recent years. It tells the story of Doron, a member of a covert anti-terror unit in the Israeli military, whose world is split in two, between his undercover identity and his life back home.

Three months ago, Netflix acquired Fauda for global distribution. Avi Issacharoff, Fauda’s co-creator and an analyst of Middle Eastern affairs for Walla News and The Times of Israel, joins 2NJB to tall about the show and its worldwide success.

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Episode 25 – Scoops of hummus to news scoops with Shen Liberman

Shen Liberman is the head of the Culture Desk at Channel 10 News. She started her career as a radio anchor for Galatz, Israel’s military radio (it’s a thing). From there, she continued on to 7 years of exile in the barren wastelands of New York and Los Angeles. Between serving hummus dishes as a waitress, staying in the most luxurious hotels and interviewing celebrities, Shen built an impressive career as a journalist. This week Shen joins Two Nice Jewish Boys to share her tales of the media world here in Israel and abroad.

Episode 23 – MK Sharren Haskel: A new generation in the Likud Party

tnjb-logo-2-0MK Sharren Haskel joined the parliament not too long ago, in late 2015. Nevertheless, she’s managed to do quite a bit in the last year and a half. Haskel, the youngest MK of the Likud party, is the flag-bearer for the cannabis bill which was long opposed, and recently endorsed by Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan.

In addition to being an active member on several Knesset committees, Haskel works diligently on issues such as public diplomacy, the environment, health care, and animal rights. Returning from the inauguration of U.S. President Donald Trump, Haskel sat with Two Nice Jewish Boys to talk about her life and service as a Knesset Member.

Episode 22 – Uri Geller: Spoon bender and spy

tnjb-logo-2-0In August 1973, the CIA conducted a study at the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California. That study documented the unique abilities of a young man named Uri Geller. After 7 days of tests, the study concluded “that he [Geller] has demonstrated his paranormal perceptual ability in a convincing and unambiguous way.” To paraphrase Uri’s own son: whichever way you look at this, there’s a fascinating story here!

Uri also conducts an ESP experiment for you guys this episode! Listen, follow his instructions and share your drawings in the comments. We’ll upload his drawing soon!

Episode 21 – 2001: A Lebanese odyssey with Jonathan Elkhoury

tnjb-logo-2-0Jonathan Elkhoury was only 9 years old when he fled Lebanon with his mother and brother in 2001. The family reunited with Jonathan’s father, an ex-officer of the SLA (South Lebanon Army) who had sought refuge in Israel the year before.

Today Elkhoury is a proud Zionist and the spokesman for the Israeli Christians Recruitment Forum. 2NJB sat with Jonathan to talk about his amazing life story. Today we also feature the amazing song Dissipating Dream by Telalit!


Episode 20 – Putting Holocaust denial on trial with Prof. Deborah Lipstadt

tnjb-logo-2-0Professor Deborah Lipstadt’s amazing story has been recently adapted into the beautiful Hollywood movie “Denial” starring Rachel Weisz. She sat with 2NJB as we spoke about Holocaust Deniers, her career and the life-turning event that unfolded as she was sued by Holocaust Denier David Erving.

Podcast: David Wolpe, author, senior rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles

Jared Sichel stops by the Venice studios of music producer Andrew Feltenstein to learn about the process of producing music for films, TV shows, and trailers. And Andrew talks about the role of Judaism in his life, and shares his experience in the music industry.

Tribal – Episode 1: Jon Birger, author of ‘Date-onomics’