There’s a reason why it feels like a torturing device; It was

Photo by Sven Mieke on Unsplash

In the 1800s, the British prison system was badly broken. Convicted criminals were slowly rotting away in isolated cells, spending their days doing nothing. Most prisons did not provide prisoners with necessities such as linens or even much to eat. The dire prison situation led to other methods of punishment, either deportation to the British colonies or execution.

The British public was not content with the situation. Social movements formed by religious groups and human rights activists protested against the treatment offered to prisoners. Calls to rehabilitate offenders and reform the prison system grew.

It’s in this atmosphere that Sir…


The U.K.’s controversial plan shouldn’t be discarded as stupidity

Photo: Mangopear creative/Unsplash

For the third time since the pandemic began, the U.K. is betting against the rest of the world.

The first time brought catastrophic consequences. The U.K. flirted with the idea of herd immunity and delayed a decision to go into a full lockdown despite the world urging it to, a step that ended up costing the lives of thousands.

The second time was less of a failure. The U.K. was the first western country to start a Covid-19 vaccination campaign. It later decided to take yet another controversial step and was the first to extend the period of time between…


And how learning to juggle got me out of a slump

Photo by Peggy Anke on Unsplash

I was one of those weird kids who thought juggling was cool. What probably helped build the appeal was that I simply couldn’t do it. Time and time again I tried picking up 3 balls and throwing them in the way a juggler would. Every attempt ended in the same way, the balls fell to the ground immediately. Every few days, and later every few months, I would pick them up and give them another hopeful try. Nada.

I concluded that my motor skills and coordination were simply not good enough for the task. …


A (simple) look into Covid-19’s genome sequencing

The coronavirus pandemic changed the world. It changed economies, it changed education, it changed politics. The pandemic will continue to have a long-term effect on health, and science. There are many fields that won’t stay the same, from International travel to the development of vaccines.

Among those, there’s one field, not widely discussed, that has become the forefront of the fight against the virus. Genome sequencing allows researchers to learn about the virus, find variants, and even perform epidemiologic investigations. The field is going through a massive change.

I spoke to Prof. Adi Stern, an expert in biotechnology and the…


The extraordinary experiment asked whether a chimpanzee could become human

Gua the Chimpanzee and her ‘brother’ Donald. The physiological cinema register, Pennsylvania State College.

Winthrop Kellogg came up with the idea in 1927. He recently received his master's degree from Columbia University’s psychology program and was on his way to continue towards doctorate studies.

Kellogg was fascinated by incidents in which children were left in the jungle and grew up alongside wild animals. He reached the conclusion that these children changed because they were affected by the wild environment. Kellogg claimed that once they passed a critical period of development, the children could never be fully educated and civilized as human beings.

At that period in time, this theory wasn’t a consensus. Many claimed…


A simple(ish) guide to an unprecedented political crisis

Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: Wikimedia

The Political System

Israel is a parliamentary democracy. In the heart of its political system is the Knesset — the Israeli parliament. The Knesset is formed of 120 members, elected every 4 years. These members of Knesset (MKs) are part of various political parties.

The American or British political system is largely formed by two parallel lines. In the U.S, the majority of voters are either Republican or Democrat. In the U.K, the majority of voters are either Conservative or Labour. In Israel, the different parties form a semi-circle in terms of political agenda. Represented in the Knesset are parties from the radical…


The science of early memories gives some fascinating answers

Photo: Izzy Park/Unsplash

I was almost six years old when the Gulf War broke. International coalition forces waged war in Iraq, and as a result, Iraq attacked Israel with long-range powerful Scud missiles. I vividly remember the sirens. I remember putting on the gas mask that was distributed to all Israelis due to fear of a chemical attack. I remember constantly having to rush to the “sealed room” — my parents’ bedroom, which had its windows sealed with duct tape to protect against a nerve gas attack. I remember an unfinished dinner with my favorite food that was interrupted by sirens. …


The US and Europe see a dramatic spike in antisemitism during the Israeli-Gaza war

A synagogue in Norwich, UK, was sprayed with an antisemitic slur.

The Jewish Lockdown

I called Alison for a short interview after yet another attack in London. “I couldn’t sleep”, she told me nervously, “I’m too scared”. Alison shared with me a term that she had just heard a few moments before our talk — ‘ The Jewish Lockdown’. “The Jews are frightened to leave their homes. Some are taking the Mezuzahs off their door. Others are not going to kosher markets for fear of being attacked”, She said.

Alison is Jewish, she lives in a London suburb where 12%…


On May 12, Israel faced its most difficult day in years, with two wars spiraling out of control

A missile fired from Gaza directly hit a bus in Holon, Israel. Photo: N12

I was born in Israel. I lived in Tel Aviv for 28 years before moving to London eight years ago. I am a journalist working for Israel’s leading television channel. In the past 18 years, I’ve covered wars, riots, terror attacks, and mass demonstrations. I’m a cynic; as a veteran field reporter, you have to be. On May 12, for the first time, I cried for my country.

I’m not here to say that Israel is perfect. It isn’t. I’m not here to advocate. This essay is written from my heart, with my perspective, and to the best of my…


Dr. Sarah Halimi was beaten and thrown out of a balcony, her killer will not face trial

Sarah Halimi. Photo: CRIF (Conseil représentatif des institutions juives de France)

Dr. Sarah Halimi was 65-years-old, a retired physician and teacher. She was a French Orthodox Jew, with 3 children and many friends. Everyone who knew her says she was a good person.

On the night of April 4th, 2017, Sarah was sleeping alone at her 3rd-floor apartment in the Belleville district of Paris. It is a social housing project, Halimi has been living there for 30 years. She was the only Jewish person to have lived in the building at the time.

On the same April night, Kobili Traoré, a 27-year-old drug dealer who was addicted to cannabis, was watching…

Elad Simchayoff

I love writing about what I love. Journalist. Always curious. Israeli born, London based. Father, Husband, and a dog person.

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