Universiteit Leiden

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Eldad Ben Aharon


Dr. E. Ben Aharon
+31 71 527 2727

Dr. Eldad Ben Aharon is a lecturer at the Leiden University Institute for Area Studies. He specializes in the diplomatic history of the Middle East during the Cold War that broadly includes U.S. foreign policy on the wider region, Israeli Turkish relations and Israeli Iranian relations. Dr. Ben Aharon’s research focuses on Israel's foreign policy from 1948 to the present as well as questions of theory and methodology in a humanities-based approach to International Relations, especially the relationship between archival research and oral history. Occasionally, Dr. Ben Aharon writes op-eds and news analysis (in Hebrew and English) and policy papers for think tanks. His other main areas of research interest are memory studies, Holocaust studies, comparative genocide studies, Jewish-Muslim Relations, Arab Jews, and the theory and practice of oral history. Dr. Ben Aharon’s teaching includes courses in the political history and historiography of Israel, Israel-Diaspora relations, selected themes in Israel's foreign policy, modern Hebrew in practice and a BA thesis seminar in International Studies.

More information about Eldad Ben Aharon


Dr. Ben Aharon is currently (July 2020) finishing writing his monograph that investigates why and how Israeli diplomats leveraged the contested memories of the Armenian genocide in the last decade of the Cold War. Set against the renewed US-Soviet polarisation from 1978, the 1979 Iranian revolution, and the 1980 military coup in Turkey, his book examines how the ‘diplomacy of genocide’ was a central component in restoring the Israeli Turkish relationship in key moments during the last decade of the Cold War. This innovative research combines the first comprehensive study of the records available in the Israeli State Archive (ISA), the archives of Jewish American organisations and recently declassified records of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), with interviews with prominent Israeli diplomats of the period. Dr. Ben Aharon's book uncovers how diplomatic manoeuvring related to the recognition of the Armenian genocide, intersecting with Holocaust memory, played a more important role than scholars have hitherto acknowledged in the triangular relationship between Israel, Turkey and the United States.



BA Israel Studies

Courses taught:

BA International Studies

Courses taught:

Curriculum Vitae

  • 2015- 2019 D. Phil. Royal Holloway, University of London, Holocaust Research Institute and the Department of History
  • 2012-2014 Master of Arts University of Amsterdam (UvA) and the NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies
  • 2007-2011 BA in Humanities and Social Science with specialization in International Relations

Grants and awards

  • 2017-2019 Global Excellence Scholarship for Armenian Studies, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.
  • 2015-2019 Crossland Crossland Maintenance award, Royal Holloway, University of London.
  • 2015-2019 College Research Scholarship, Royal Holloway, University of London.
  • 2015-2018 Friendly Hand Charitable Foundation Scholarship


  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Leiden Institute for Area Studies

Work address

Matthias de Vrieshof
Matthias de Vrieshof 4
2311 BZ Leiden



No relevant ancillary activities

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