Sam Sokol has delivered engaging and entertaining talks to groups at universities, think tanks, Federations and synagogues from Tel Aviv to Kansas City. He has addressed the Israel Council on Foreign Relations, the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee and student groups at institutions of higher learning such as Brandeis, Emerson and Boston University.
Delivering a lecture on Russian hybrid war at the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy in New York.
Accepting the 2015 B'nai B'rith Diaspora Reportage Award in Jerusalem.
Sam Sokol addressing ISGAP on Israel's controversial approach to Holocaust revisionism in Eastern Europe.
Russia, fake news and the forgotten Jewish refugees of Ukraine:
How Russia pulled the Jews into his hybrid war in Ukraine and sent tens of thousands of Jews into exile
Two years prior to Russia's interference in the US Presidential election, the Kremlin launched a hybrid war on Ukraine, using fake news, propaganda and proxy-armies to destabilize its former imperial territory. As part of this effort, Moscow exaggerated the problem of Ukrainian antisemitism, fabricating fictional pogroms and accusing its adversaries of reviving Nazism. Caught in the middle of the conflict, Ukraine's Jews were hit hard, with tens of thousands of refugees fleeing to Israel in the face of the destruction of their communities and way of life.
Covering contemporary European antisemitism:
Antisemitism has been on the rise across Europe and many European Jews feel trapped between rising left and right-wing populism on the one hand and Islamic Judeophobia on the other. What is it like to cover resurgent European antisemitism as a Jewish reporter?
Covering a country that hates the press:
A journalist's experience of reporting on Israel in an age of increasing hostility toward the news media
Israelis' trust in the media has eroded significantly in recent years, especially on the political right and among the more religiously conservative elements of the population. What is it like to report on Israeli religious life, the Arab-Israeli conflict and other contentious topics while living as an orthodox Jew in a community in which the press is an object of disdain? And how does the widespread view that the media in biased affect those tasked with risking their lives to report the news?
Jew versus Jew:
How Israel became a battleground over what it means to be Jewish
2018 marked the first year in the history of the state of Israel in which the majority of new immigrants under the law of return did not qualify as Jewish under the Orthodox interpretation of Halacha (Jewish law). They joined the hundreds of thousands of non-Jewish Israelis from the former Soviet Union unable to marry or divorce under the Orthodox dominated state Rabbinate. As Israelis argue over the proper role of non-Jews of Jewish descent in a Zionist state, debates over issues ranging from the role of non-orthodox denominations in public life to the institution of civil marriage. What will the future of a Jewish state look like after the religious kulturkampf?
Israeli ultra-orthodoxy, religious extremism and the struggle for integration:
A firsthand account of what it is like to cover religious extremism and violence in your own backyard. A resident of Beit Shemesh, a flashpoint between Haredi and secular Israelis, Sam Sokol can describe just what it is like to work as a journalist when the religious conflict, and concomitant violence, occurs within walking distance of your own home.
Israel's facilitation of European Holocaust denial:
Since the end of the Cold War, Israel has worked hard to build lasting ties with the countries of the former Soviet Union. However, in the interests of realpolitik, the Jewish state has often overlooked rampant Holocaust revisionism sponsored by allied governments, instead praising them for their efforts at preserving the memory of European Jewry. When does using the politics of memory in pursuit of geopolitical goals stop being an acceptable tool of statecraft and become a crime against history?