Avi Shlaim, one of the world’s foremost experts on the Israel–Palestine conflict, reflects with characteristic rigour and readability on a range of key issues and personalities. From the 1917 Balfour Declaration to the failure of the Oslo peace process, from the 1948 War to the 2008 invasion of Gaza, Israel and Palestine places current events in their proper historical perspective. It assesses the impact of key political and intellectual figures, including Yasir Arafat and Ariel Sharon, Edward Said and Benny Morris. It also re-examines the United States’ influential role in the conflict, and explores the many missed opportunities for peace and progress in the region.
Clear-eyed and meticulous, Israel and Palestine is an essential tool for understanding the fractured history and future prospects of Israel-Palestine.
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Avi Shlaim is a Fellow of St. Anthony’s College and a professor of international relations at the University of Oxford. He was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2006. His books include Lion of Jordan: The Life of King Hussein in War and Peace; War and Peace in the Middle East: A Concise History; The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World; and Israel and Palestine: Reappraisals, Revisions, Refutations. He lives in Oxford.From Publishers Weekly:
Shlaim (Lion of Jordan), an Israeli army veteran and international relations professor at Oxford University, offers a penetrating critique of Zionism in these reviews and essays collected from the last 30 years. He focuses on the three main watersheds—Israel's establishment, the Six Day War of 1967 and the Oslo Accords of 1993 and offers valuable commentary on current scholarship—saving his sharpest criticism for Benny Morris, a former colleague in Israel's school of new historians, a group who made their name by refuting early historical accounts of Israel's creation and the displacement of Palestinians. But while he illuminates unfamiliar corners and characters in the Arab-Israeli impasse, such as a Syrian dictator who briefly pursued peace before getting swept from power and executed, Shlaim too often lets his politics seep into his work, omitting important details that should shape the debate: he describes Professor Norman Finkelstein as merely a well-known critic of Israel, ignoring Finkelstein's rather incendiary comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany. Shlaim's book is an important one, but some readers might think that he gives short-shrift to the Israeli side of this divisive debate. (Oct.)
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