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Rebecca Shimoni Stoil

Journalist, Historian

Travels from Baltimore, MD

Availability: Contact JNF Speakers Bureau for availability or contact the speaker directly.



Middle Eastern and Foreign Affairs, Inside Israel and US Government, Academic Perspectives on Israel and Jewish History, Anti-Terrorism and Security, Positively Israel, Media and Current Events


Rebecca Shimoni-Stoil is the Washington correspondent for the Times of Israel and a PhD candidate at Johns Hopkins University. She was previously the Jerusalem Post’s acting Washington DC bureau chief, and has served as both the Knesset and Internal Security correspondent for the Jerusalem Post.

Rebecca has written across a broad spectrum of topics, beats and styles as a feature and magazine writer, op-ed writer, blogger, staff writer and web editor.

She provided front-line accounts of rocket attacks in Sderot, train wrecks, suicide bombings and the Second Lebanon War. She has interviewed Nobel Peace Prize laureates, top security officials and many of Israel’s political leaders.

She also has happily reviewed some of Israel’s best (and worst) dining establishments. Rebecca has appeared as a guest commentator on television and radio programs in multiple countries.

Rebecca graduated with honors from the University of Chicago, and then made aliyah. She talked her way into the IDF, despite being told that she was “too old”, and then talked her way out of serving as a secretary and into a combat unit. She became the deputy commander of combat medics in the “Eshet Battalion” of the Armoured Corps, and received the Central Command award for distinguished service. As a reservist, Rebecca was a member of the elite Home Front Command Heavy Search and Rescue unit and served in the Second Lebanon War.

She has a deep interest in women's issues, particularly in the framework of Israeli politics, in emergency preparedness and response, and in political culture and identity in the Jewish world.

Rebecca is currently completing a PhD in History at Johns Hopkins University. She also teaches a groundbreaking course on military studies for non-majors, translating the major questions facing military thinkers and civilian policy-makers into a political science framework. Her own research focuses on political identity and agrarian culture, and she has articles forthcoming on such diverse topics as memory and the American whaling industry and economic thought on the Israeli right.

Rebecca currently lives in Maryland with her husband and three children, who all look forward to returning to Israel.

Download a prepared introduction for Rebecca Shimoni Stoil

Popular Speeches:

  • Israel and America: New beginnings/Aging partnership Israel has a new coalition and America is approaching midterm elections, with speculation already beginning for 2016. What does it all mean for Israel's geopolitical situation, as well as for Israel's internal politics?
  • One Knesset, 120 Voices Who's in? Who's out? And how does the Knesset get anything done at all? I explain the different forces at work, and some of the major issues facing Israel politicians and legislators. (This can be appropriate for all knowledge levels, and can even be run for adults and teens as an interactive "game" on retreats/shabbatonim.)
  • Coalition for Change or a Blast from the Past? Religious politics in Israel, from separated busses to Tel Aviv's clubs. From drafting yeshiva students to the Women of the Wall. What is the state of Israeli Judaism and what directions might it take in the future?
  • Coming of Age in a Tough Neighborhood The Arab Spring, the Syrian Autumn, the Iranian bomb and the Turkish chill. What challenges does Israel face from its closest neighbors, and what can be done about it?
  • Homefront Under Fire Civilian and military challenges in protecting Israel's home front, from rocket-started wildfires to bomb-proof preschools. Strategies, stories, and an intimate look at civilian life under rocket fire and in the shadow of bombings.
  • The Army that Built the Nation How the IDF serves as a powerful tool for creating integration and understanding among Israel's diverse groups. What has the country gained from it and how can that balance be maintained?
  • "What are you doing here?” My own intimate story of the aliya experience, service as the only female combat soldier in an Armored Corps combat unit in Gaza and the West Bank, the Second Lebanon War, the Second Intifada and offering a front-seat view of pretty much anything else newsworthy that has happened in Israel since 2001.

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