I was born in the Soviet Union, and later repatriated from the Russian Federation to the state of Israel. With such a background, several reasons drove me to attend the department of Middle Eastern and Islamic studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, among them being my wish to understand the culture and the history of the countries neighboring Israel. Additional interest of mine has been the history of Afghanistan and the Soviet involvement in that country. In the course of my BA studies, I gained better understanding of the culture and the history of Islam, the history of the Arab people, and the basic knowledge of the classical Arabic language. That, while in my second field of interest I was also able to acquire the basic knowledge of the history of Iran and of the classical Persian language. During my studies, I have developed a great interest in the history and the culture of Iran, India and Central Asia, as well as in the historical and cultural links between those three areas. My regular MA curriculum offered me almost no opportunity to pursue my fields of interest, and for this reason the Asian Sphere program appealed to me, as it would offer me opportunity to focus on my recent research interest, and would allow me to avoid compromise when choosing the subject for my thesis. I also hope that the program would allow me to meet with other students who are interested in the same topics, and would give me the opportunity to make new friends and colleagues.