David Samuels

17 articles

The Aspiring Novelist Who Became Obama’s Foreign-Policy Guru

In the basement of the White House, in an office with no windows, an MFA grad named Ben Rhodes is telling the story of America’s foreign policy.


One Hundred Years of Arm Bars

How three generations of a Brazilian family evangelized for and fought over the sport of Gracie jiu-jitsu as it moved from the Amazon to Hollywood to the UFC.


The Arc of the Sun

A trip to the South African Million Dollar Pigeon Race.

David Samuels on the Longform Podcast

A Fish Tale

Typee, the most popular book Melville published in his lifetime, was his memoir of Polynesia. Most of it was probably made up.

Let’s Die Together

The rise of anonymous group suicide in Japan.


How Libya Blew Billions and Its Best Chance at Democracy

Following Muammar Qaddafi’s death in 2011, Libya had hundreds of billions of dollars. This is the story of how it was erased.

Previously: David Samuels on the Longform Podcast.


Q&A With Art Spiegelman, Creator of ‘Maus’

“And the Holocaust trumps art every time.”


The Pink Panthers

From a Tokyo smash-and-grab to driving a car through the window of a Dubai jewelry shop, how a ragtag band of Balkan thieves set a new bar for audacious heists.

A member of the Pink Panthers, Milan Poparic, escaped from prison yesterday.


The Watchers

A startup’s plan to launch a fleet of cheap, small, ultra-efficient imaging satellites and revolutionize data collection.


The $314,900,000 Losing Lottery Ticket

Ten years ago, Jack Whittaker won the largest lotto jackpot in history. Then he lost everything.


Wild Things

Animal nature, human racism, and the future of zoos.


American Mozart

A profile of Kanye West.