B'nai B'rith UK

+44 (0)75 88 087 324 office@bnaibrithuk.org


Virtual Meetings 2022

Dr. Helen Beer: Yiddish in the 21st Century: Continuity and Change (Heritage Days – 24/11/2022)

Dr. Helen Beer looks at how the Yiddish language and culture continued in the post-World War Two period and the many develop-ments and changes which have arisen in the 21st Century

Helen is a recently retired Lecturer in Yiddish at University College London (UCL). She continues to teach language and literature courses, plus summer courses in Brussels, Paris and Weimar. She is Director of the annual London intensive Yiddish summer course (Ot Azoy), and is immersed in many Yiddish music and theatre

Prof. Robbie Sabel: Is international law relevant to the Arab-Israel conflict? (Bureau of International Affairs – 9/11/2022)

Prof. Robbie Sabel Ph.D is Professor of International Law, Hebrew University
Jerusalem and former Legal Adviser and Deputy Director,  General Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs; His most recent book is International Law and the Arab-Israeli Conflict (CUP, 2022)

Louise Soloway Chan: An Artist’s Journey from East to West, and Back Again (Heritage Days – 2/11/2022)

Louise Chan studied art in the UK and India, moving to Hong Kong as Artist in Residence with the British Council.  Known there for her large colourful installation of 3D bas-relief panels.  Recently, in collaboration with a gallery in Hong Kong, she produced a series of small Chinese style ink paintings and animations, of people navigating daily life and travel during the pandemic

Lord Dubs in Conversation with Professor Shirli Gilbert (Heritage Days – 30/10/2022)

“What lessons can we learn from refugees of the Holocaust and how they have rebuilt their lives, to help us better understand the situation refugees from Ukraine currently face?’’

Lord Dubs
Born in December 1932 in Prague, Lord (Alf) Dubs was one of the Czech children rescued from the Nazis in the Kindertransport. Since then, he has been a keen campaigner on the plight of refugees, leading him to sponsor an amendment to the government’s immigration bill in the Lords in 2016, which would have forced the government to accept 3,000 unaccompanied child refugees stranded in Europe. Lord Dubs has been a local councillor, an MP, Chair of the Fabian Society, Chair of Liberty, a trustee of Action Aid, Director of the Refugee Council and a trustee of the Immigration Advisory Service.

Professor Shirli Gilbert D.Phil
Shirli Gilbert, Professor of Modern Jewish History at University College London, is a specialist in modern Jewish history, with particular interest in the Holocaust and its legacies, modern Jewish identity, and Jews in South Africa. She holds a D. Phil in Modern History from the University of Oxford and was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Society of Fellows at the University of Michigan.

Jewish Chaplaincy in the British Armed Forces: Dr Jonathan Lewis  (Heritage Days – 21/09/2022)

Dr Jonathan Lewis  is a retired lawyer and judge and member of Pinner Synagogue.

The first British Jewish chaplain, appointed in 1892, ministered in Britain. Commissioned Jewish chaplains served alongside soldiers from 1915 and have done so continuously since then in many theatres of war, travelling huge distances in search of widely dispersed Jewish soldiers.  This is the story of British Jewish ministry at war, as well as of its military service in peacetime

 Our Jewish Heritage Matters: Synagogues, Cemeteries – Protect, Preserve and Educate: Dame Helen Hyde (Heritage Days – 07/09/2022)

Dame Helen Hyde, DBE is a Trustee of the Holocaust Education Trust, the National Holocaust Centre & Museum, plus Trustee and Patron of the One Vision Project, Watford. In 2012, Helen was made Dame Commander of the British Empire for services to national education and Holocaust education and in 2018 she was presented with an Honorary Doctorate of Education by the University of Hertfordshire.

Using the Law to Counter BDS and Anti-Israel Activities: Jonathan Turner (Bureau of International Affairs – 24/08/2022)

Jonathan Turner, barrister and author specialising in intellectual property and competition law, is Chief Executive of UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI), an organisation which uses laws to counter BDS and other anti-Israel activity. The work of UKLFI has led to the arrest of a flotilla of ships in Athens, stopped the flow of funds to terrorist organisations and helped students combat antisemitism

Jews and the Ukrainian Tragedy: Prof Colin Shindler (Bureau of International Affairs – 29/05/2022)

Colin Shindler is emeritus professor at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. He became the first professor of Israel
Studies in the UK in 2008 and was the founding chairman of the European Association of Israeli Studies (EAIS). He is the author of many books and
a frequent contributor to the Jewish and international press


Licoricia of Winchester – the rise and fall of a remarkable Jewish businesswoman: Rebecca Abrams (BBUK – 18/05/2022)

Rebecca Abrams is the author of seven published works of fiction and non-fiction and the editor of two anthologies of writing.  Her most recent non-fiction title situates the life of Licoricia of Winchester and her Jewish community on the wider context of 13th century England and the historic roots of English antisemitism.

Further non-fiction titles include:  The Jewish Journey: 4000 years in 22 objects (Ashmolean Museum), and as co-editor Jewish Treasures From Oxford Libraries

Rebecca is a widely published journalist and also teaches creative writing at all levels.


The Kaunas Culture Capital 2022 Memory Office Programme – Jewish Heritage Projects: H.E. Renatas Norkus (Bureau of International Affairs – 11/05/2022)

His Excellency Renatas Norkus is the Lithuanian Ambassador to the United Kingdom

Leadership in a contested space: Arlene Foster (Bureau of International Affairs – 27/04/2022)

Arlene Foster is a former politician and broadcaster who twice served as First Minister of Northern Ireland. As Leader of the Democratic Unionist Party, she led her party into a supply and confidence agreement with the Tories in 2017 and
offered a consistently pro-Israel voice in UK politics

Isresilience: what Israelis can teach the world – Michael Dixon and Naomi Baum (BBUK/Bureau of International Affairs – 06/04/2022)

Michael Dickson is the executive director of Stand With Us in Jerusalem and has been listed as the fourteenth most influential Jew on Twitter

Naomi Baum, Ph.D is a psychologist and consultant in the field of trauma and resilence. She was Director of the Resilience Unit at the Israel Center for the Treatment of Psychotrauma in Jerusalem

BBUK meets BB Romania: Sharing our history  (23/03/2022)

Situated in the heart of Central Europe, the Romanian Jewish community has had a chequered history, presented by Felicia Waldman, Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Bucharest, whilst leading guide and author of Jewish London, Rachel Kolsky, gave an account of the journey of Jewish settlement in the UK

Shechita: a European battleground – Henry Grunwald and Shimon Cohen  (BBUK/BB Europe – 23/02/2022)

This talk was hosted by B’nai B’rith Europe, and the Zoom recording is available online through BBE using the following details:

Link: https://bit.ly/35E5MTk

Password: BBETalks10*

Henry Grunwald OBE QC has been the Chair of Shechita UK since it was founded in 2003. A successful criminal defence barrister by profession, he has held many senior positions in the UK Jewish community as well as having served as a Vice-President of the European Jewish Congress from 2003-2009. A former President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and founder and first Chair of the Jewish Leadership Council, he is currently Chairman of the Rabbi Sacks Legacy Trust. He also chairs the National Holocaust Centre and Museum and is President of World Jewish Relief.

Shimon Cohen is the founder and chairman of The PR Office, a London based public relations consultancy. He is a media relations and reputation management specialist. He currently advises Chairmen, CEOs and a
number of high profile sports and media personalities. Shimon led the international communications for Nelson Mandela’s 46664 campaign. He is active in community affairs, particularly as Campaign Director of Shechita UK and in Special Educational Needs

Proportionality in Armed Conflict: Professor Geoffrey Corn (BBUK/Bureau of International Affairs – 16/02/2022)

Professor Geoffrey Corn, Distinguished Professor of National Security Law at South Texas College of Law, Houston, considers how the illicit tactics of enemy states and rogue agents affect how countries conduct modern warfare.
He examines this question by engaging with key concepts in the laws of armed warfare, such as proportionality and distinction, and shows how urban war exacerbates the challenges faced by combatant nations. His presentation has a major bearing on criticisms routinely made about Israel within the western media

Late but not too late: the campaign to bring Nazi war criminals in the UK to justice: Philip Rubenstein (BBUK – 19/01/2022)


Philip Rubenstein is Director of the All-Party Parliamentary War Crimes Group in the late 1980s, which succeeded in securing a change in the law to enable the prosecution of Nazi war criminals in the UK. Served on the Board of BICOM and currently a Board member of the International Centre for Jewish Studies.

Labour and Hard Left Antisemitism – Lessons Learned and Moving On: Rt. Hon Joan Ryan (Bureau of International Affairs- 12/01/2022)

Rt. Hon Joan Ryan, Executive Director of ELNET UK, a non-profit organisation dedicated to strengthening relations between Europe and Israel. Former MP for Enfield North. Resigned from the Labour Party citing the antisemitism crisis and the leadership’s refusal to act or condemn it. Honorary President of Labour Friends of Israel and a Member of the Privy Council