63 episodes

Go behind the scenes of Israeli history with self-confessed history nerd Noam Weissman. Each week, he offers a fresh perspective on some of the most controversial and interesting events in the country’s history. If you’ve ever wanted to know more about what Israel is all about -- from multiple angles and viewpoints -- this is the podcast for you.

Unpacking Israeli History Unpacked

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.8 • 656 Ratings

Go behind the scenes of Israeli history with self-confessed history nerd Noam Weissman. Each week, he offers a fresh perspective on some of the most controversial and interesting events in the country’s history. If you’ve ever wanted to know more about what Israel is all about -- from multiple angles and viewpoints -- this is the podcast for you.

    Season 6, Coming Next Week!

    Season 6, Coming Next Week!

    We're back for season 6! Get ready to join Noam for a deep dive into Israeli history, shedding light on the events of today.
    Have thoughts, questions, or stories to share? Drop us a line at noam@jewishunpacked.com. Your email might even become part of the conversation on the show.
    So, what are you waiting for? Yalla, let's do this.

    • 3 min
    Should Israel Ransom Hostages? (Updated)

    Should Israel Ransom Hostages? (Updated)

    When we first released an episode on captured soldiers, back in August 2023, we had no idea that we were mere months away from the worst hostage crisis Israel had ever experienced. 
    On October 7, 2023, Hamas murdered 1,200 people – mostly civilians – and dragged another 240 to Gaza, plunging Israel into a nightmare. Hamas did not discriminate. They took babies as young as 9 months, elderly people well into their 80s, and everyone in between.
    Some of those 240 hostages have been rescued or released. Some were murdered in captivity. Three were killed mistakenly by “friendly fire.” But as of December 2023, 129 remain in Gaza, their fates and welfare unknown. And the questions we raised back in August remain more relevant than ever. 
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    Sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tO4xtCQdNDbcO3THe1elsiNrvREOuG6FjD3gcq5hDnA/edit?usp=sharing

    • 59 min
    Noam on the Ground: Reflections on the Israel War

    Noam on the Ground: Reflections on the Israel War

    Noam reflects on his meetings with survivors, evacuees, and Jewish leaders in the wake of 10/7. (Or 7/10, for the Israelis and Europeans out there.)
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    Sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GVNSsNxr23fIzzW7TnU3p6kGC-OxoTYkDSlAXmsd34w/edit?usp=drive_link

    • 45 min
    Meta-Narratives of the Israel-Hamas War

    Meta-Narratives of the Israel-Hamas War

    The world changed on 10/7. It's too soon to know exactly how this war will play out. But in this episode, Noam offers some thoughts on how and why people choose “sides” in a conflict like this – and how to respond to the misinformation, denialism, hatred, and extremism that poisons the discourse.
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    Sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sfIlw07IpRwqctUMhdJdwXiauZkgkkNZa3Ns3ZY_L1w/edit?usp=sharing

    • 37 min
    Hamas, Explained (Updated)

    Hamas, Explained (Updated)

    This episode is a re-release, with the understanding that everything has changed.
    You’ve heard their name. Watched their propaganda videos. Seen their bloody handiwork up close and personal.
    But how well do you really know the story of Hamas?
    This episode delves into the surprising history of Israel’s charming next door neighbor. It’s a deep dive into their history, their ideology, their legacy. Because if we want to truly understand Israeli history, we’ve got to face the parallel history that has developed alongside it.
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    Sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DBe4s5ArwlF7ACLUoztotb9EarUYqK7nd1Z0pCXyMR4/edit?usp=sharing
    ~~~~ 
    Unpacking Israeli History is generously sponsored by Marci and Andrew Spitzer, and this week’s episode is sponsored by Adam Neuman.

    • 45 min
    War Ends, Scars Remain - Yom Kippur War Part 3

    War Ends, Scars Remain - Yom Kippur War Part 3

    October 6, 2023 marks the 50-year anniversary of the first day of the Yom Kippur War – perhaps Israel’s most traumatic war. This miniseries unpacks that trauma, guiding our listeners through the lead-up to the war, the battles, the behind-the-scenes geopolitical maneuvering, and the painful aftermath. The final episode of our series explores wider geopolitical implications of the war and reflects on the war’s legacy.
    ~~~~  
    Sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1okcCstf6CJAouiWPPUjSUHA0Pmq3SbxZ-I8gnz7A2pA/edit?usp=sharing
    ~~~~ 
    This Yom Kippur War mini-series is generously sponsored by Risa and Simcha Dauer.

    • 41 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
656 Ratings

656 Ratings

OldTomtomUser ,

My favorite podcast

After experiencing virulent antisemitism from close ex-friends in the past few years, I had already begun a deep dive researching Judaism and Jewish history. On Oct. 7, the virulence of Jew hatred online ratcheted up by a couple of orders of magnitude and I needed facts at the tip of my tongue to be able to hold my own against accusations of all the atrocities the DARVO gaslighting has convinced the world that Israelis have done. Unpacking Jewish History is concise, cogent, fact-based, evenhanded, and entertaining — exactly what I need. From the background I get from this podcast, I know how to direct my reading. I know how to counter low-information accusations. Thank you for putting this podcast out, it is a huge public service to the entire Jewish community. I’ve started at the beginning and am systematically making my way through, using the podcast to launch deep dives in my reading. Bless you for helping me fill the holes in my Israeli history knowledge.

Motherrivki ,

Learning

The podcast is a great learning tool for different views on Israel and the different marks of its history.

EZ History Nerd ,

Deep dive into Israeli history

Excellent overviews of important moments from Israeli history, good, bad, and ugly. The presenter is open about his biases, and goes out of his way to show other perspectives. The narration, pacing, and writing of all the episodes are superb. Highly recommended!

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