Episodes - Israel Story Episodes - Israel Story
Over the last four episodes, we’ve told the stories behind some of Israel’s most iconic songs. When we set off on this musical journey, we hoped to find a unicorn, ...

In Israel today, Mizrahi – or “Eastern” – music is ubiquitous. In fact, to many, it is practically synonymous with Israeli music. But that wasn’t always the case. For decades, ...

In 1968, an up-and-coming left-wing politician by the name of Uri Avnery brazenly suggested replacing Israel’s national anthem, HaTikvah. His proposal was surprising, given the fact that the would-be replacement was the unequivocal ...

Let’s face it – when it comes to Israel, everything is complicated. Politics are complicated, religion is complicated, democracy is complicated, the conflict is complicated. Even our complications are complicated. ...

Somewhere between post-Passover fatigue and summer-is-around-the-corner excitement, Shavout tends to be overlooked. But in reality, it is the secret gem of the Jewish calendar: A festival that’s all about strong women, wheat ...

Tonight, Jews around the world will gather together at their seder tables. They will drink wine, ask questions, search for the Afikoman and recite the obligation to see themselves as if they ...

According to a recent study conducted by the Israeli Anti-Drug Authority, the Holy Land might as well be rebranded as a ‘Weedtopia.’ More than a quarter of adults aged 18 ...

Imagine an abandoned White House, covered with graffiti, open to the winds, full of trash, broken bottles and condom wrappers. Now go a step further and picture it against the ...

People in one-hundred-and-eighty-seven countries around the world – including Iran, Iraq and Papua New Guinea – tune in to Israel Story. And today, we went out to talk to a ...

On November 2, 1917, Arthur James Balfour – Britain’s mustached Foreign Secretary – signed his name at the bottom of a short, typed letter addressed to a shy banker-turned-zoologist by ...

Food, it turns out, is a serious business. And as we recently came to appreciate, it can lead folks to embark on all kinds of unlikely crusades. In today’s episode ...

In 2007, long before Tesla and Elon Musk became household names, a thirty-nine-year-old Israeli tech entrepreneur by the name of Shai Agassi came out with an announcement that rattled the ...

Eli Amir, Eliyahu Rips and Eliezer Sonnenschein couldn’t be more different: the first is a celebrated Baghdad-born author, the second is a brilliant mathematician from Latvia, and the third is ...

27: Jarab

More often than not, we think of Jewish-Arab relations in Israel as being adversarial. We frequently hear tales of hatred, violence, animosity and discrimination. But reality is, of course, much ...

In the early summer of 1982, Israel invaded Lebanon. The First Lebanon War — as it would later be called — would ultimately lead to thousands of casualties, an eighteen-year-long ...

Though few people grasped it at the time, the Six-Day War put the young state of Israel on an entirely new trajectory. Some see the war’s outcome as a historic ...

In 1991, REM’s Michael Stipe famously sang, “That’s me in the spotlight, losing my religion, trying to keep up with you, and I don’t know if I can do it.” ...

Early next week we will mark Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. There are just about 160,000 Holocaust survivors still living in Israel, but they are rapidly vanishing. More than forty ...

It’s springtime in Israel and renewal is in the air: Wildflowers are blooming, short pants make their first appearances of the year, and – most importantly – we are back ...

In the second installment of this two-part series (and our season two finale), we pick up where we left off last week: Presenting small stories – one per decade – ...

This is the first in a two-part series that takes us through Israel’s short but dramatic history. Over the last few months, we’ve spent many hours, in all kinds of ...

This Thursday, May 5th, Israelis observe Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day.  At 10 a.m., according to custom, an air raid will sound and the country will fall quiet for ...

On today’s show, we delve into the world of family bonds. We’ll ask how they’re formed, and how they change over time, and are challenged in a bunch of different ...

Israeli buses regularly make international headlines, be it for suicide bombings, fights over gender segregation or clashes concerning Shabbat schedules. On this week’s episode, we delve into the world of lesser known bus-related conflicts.

Stories of relationships that have ended, and the things (the often slightly nutty things) that people do in the aftermath.

The stories in today’s episode come from our most recent live show, “Israel in Love.” We’ll meet three couples looking back at their love affairs from very different vantage points.

14: Besties

How Moshe Dayan’s wife and Yasser Arafat’s mother-in-law became bosom buddies, and other tales of unlikely friendships.

How we change nature and nature changes us, from wildflower picking in Israel to ayahuasca retreats in Peru.

The first place travelers to Israel encounter is usually Ben Gurion Airport. What they’ll remember of that experience depends in part on their relationship to the country. Are they coming home? Arriving to a place they’ve always dreamed of visiting? Passing through, with fear or wariness, en route to someplace else?

Israel Story producers crisscrossed the small country, visiting every 48 Herzl Street and collecting stories from whomever they encountered.

An Israeli couple flies to Nepal to pick up their three babies from two surrogate mothers and discover that the transaction is not as straightforward as it seems.

What do you do when you realize that in order to be true to yourself, you have to shatter everything around you, including the lives of those you love most?

Rabin is a symbol. An icon. Twenty years later, it isn't so simple to understand what he truly stands for anymore.

Two journeys - in very different directions, and taken for very different reasons - out of, and then into, Africa.

Valentine’s Day is not native to Israel, but the country does not lack for tales of love, romance, and the pursuit thereof.

5: Holy Cow!

We’ve got four featured moo-ers: a red heifer that some think will bring the messiah, a cow that’s become the symbol of radical Israeli veganism, buffalos that hold the future for a self-described “Israeli redneck,” and the golden calf that was biblical big-business.

Three Israelis who are not religious but have pursued unusual hobbies with missionary zeal. One is a hitman-for-hire, another collects a highly specific classification of autographs, and the third is a professional whistler.

Three stories that all revolve around people who rescue books, chase after books, or otherwise allow books to determine their destiny—from a Yiddish book collector based in the Tel Aviv central bus station to a lonely college student to bibliophiles in search of the lost fragments of the Aleppo Codex.

For Enid, the birth of her sixth child—born with Down syndrome, started her and her family on an incredible journey—to Tzfat, Israel, and from there to court rooms, hospitals, ultra-Orthodox yeshivas, and wedding halls, all so she could do right by her child and the other special-needs children she picked up along the way.

1: Faking It

From our relationship with Ira Glass to priceless antiquities all the way to coveted sick passes – Israeli stories that are anything but real. In our very first episode, the Israel Story team delves into the realm of fakes, forgeries, and mimicry.

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