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Why Blame Israel?: The Facts Behind the Headlines [Paperback]

Neill Lochery
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
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Book Description

7 April 2005
A recent poll revealed that over half of Europeans think Israel poses the biggest threat there is to world peace? above the infamous 'axis of evil' countries or the USA. The Israeli government's tough response to Palestinian insurgency has made it a pariah state in the eyes of many. Is this at all fair? Neill Lochery, an impartial expert on Israel and the Middle East, attempts to get to the truth about Israel and the bloody conflict with the Palestinians.

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Why Blame Israel?: The Facts Behind the Headlines + View from the Fence: The Arab-Israeli Conflict from the Present to Its Roots
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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Icon Books; New edition edition (7 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1840466243
  • ISBN-13: 978-1840466249
  • Product Dimensions: 2.1 x 12.6 x 19.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 541,423 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A superb book" -- Mail on Sunday

"A timely, erudite study that deserves to be read". -- Good Book Guide

"Incisive, informed, well-written. An unusually fair and accurate account from someone who is neither Jew nor Arab." -- Tom Gross, CNN, Sunday Telegraph and Wall Street Middle East Commentator

"Neill Lochery shows a remarkable insight into the minds and actions of the main players". -- Jewish Telegraph

About the Author

Neill Lochery is married with two children, and is currently Lecturer in Modern Israeli Politics and Director of the Centre for Israeli Studies, University College London.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Important information 11 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Outlined like a small encyclopedia of FAQ, important issues regarding the Middle East conflict are given in-depth analysis. Alas, the book is already 10 years old. Please keep writing, Mr.Lochery!
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12 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Both sides should be heard 15 Jun 2004
By Lynn
I would be interested to know from the reviewer above which 'experts' have dismissed this book as 'propaganda'?
The author, Neill Lochery, is one of the most respected experts in this field working for a leading London university. To make such a simplistic comment as 'this is Israeli propaganda' underlines the very reason why this book is so necessary - to redress the balance of information available on this conflict.
Israel is persistently portrayed as an unprovoked aggressor in this conflict, a view the world at large seems happy to go along with. Lochery makes the, seemingly, unwelcome assertion that it is perhaps the way in which the conflict is reported that creates this impression. He suggests that often biased reportage has created a distorted view of the Israel-Palestine conflict.
He illustrates his argument with well-research episodes where the facts have been misrepresented by the media to emphasis Israel violence whilst portraying Palestine as an innocent. Lochery reminds us that there are two sides to this self-perpetuating cycle of violence and retribution in which neither side is free of blame.
No one can state with any authority what the truth of the matter is. However, both sides have a right to have their voices heard. It is up to the informed reader to make up his mind. And you cannot consider yourself informed if your mind is closed to what you do not want to hear. You cannot dismiss a book as bad just because it does not echo your own opinions.
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12 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extremely informative and easy-to read 17 Jun 2004
As someone who follows the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with great interest, I have become weary of books which have an obvious bias or agenda towards one side or the other. I was therefore very pleasantly surprised by Neill Lochery's book, which is not only balanced but also provides many new insights and ideas.
The book is written in a simple question and answer format, and addressed all of the major issues of contention between the two parties. Refreshingly, Lochery is unafraid either to assign blame or give praise to both sides where needed. This makes a pleasing change from the norm, where too many commentators seem to believe that there can only be room for one narrative, and that if you are in favour of one side you must always find fault with the other.
In short, this is a comprehensive yet very easy-to-read book. If you would like to learn more about the Palestinian- Israeli conflict, this should be the first book you buy.
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24 of 35 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
In this seemingly never ending and extremely bloody saga, there is so much clever political 'spin' and such a great deal of vilification and hate directed at Israel by much of the world press and by the entire non-Jewish Middle Eastern population.
It is good to read a clear and well defined history and factual analysis which clearly redresses the balance and shows Israel in a different light as a truly democratic and industrious state which has endured decades of hostility and still lives in constant fear of its very survival.
The scene is set to change again after Arafat's death and it will be interesting to read Lochery's views in his next book - strange in a way that this was never contemplated in this book! Hindsight is a wonderful thing!!
Let us hope that Arafat's death and the changes which follow may provide a key to unlock the door to a permanent solution for peace in the Middle East.
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12 of 18 people found the following review helpful
By M. D Roberts VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I initially purchased this book on the premise that it investigated the role and coverage of the media in relation to the Arab/Palestinian - Israeli conflict.
Although it does pay some attention to these and related issues, it is my personal opinion that this analysis does not go deep enough.
In relation to such media coverage, initial intimations are made as to how the reporting of the international media has allegedly been dominated by a left-of-centre political culture which has served to reinforce stereotypical perceptions of the conflict. Reference being made as to how certain incidents have even led to the media allegedly breaking it's own codes of practice.
A case is presented, how with little background knowledge, what underlies the nature of many reports emanating from the region, is the alleged perception of most journalists that the Palestinians are the "victims" and the Israelis are the "aggressors". References are made to support these accusations.
Written entirely from a secular perspective the study provides a reasonable account of Israel's history in relation to the Arab - Israeli conflict.
A chronicle of Israel's history being provided, especially in relation to the Jewish presence in the Land, together with the political, international and regional overtures surrounding the re-birth of the Jewish state.
The effective carving-up of the Middle East by France and Great Britain after the First World War and the part that this has played in subsequent history is also studied. The strategic, self interests of the Western powers & the political machinations also being taken into consideration, both at the time and during the present day.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Better titled: "BLAME IT ALL ON EVERYONE BUT ISRAEL"
This is an ideal read if you want to learn the hard line right wing pro Israeli view. Far from being "the facts behind the headlines" as promoted, the book comprises SELECTIVE... Read more
Published on 16 May 2012 by Mike Harvey
1.0 out of 5 stars A pretence of unbiased reporting laid bare.
There are so many inaccuracies and downright falsehoods in this book, it is hard to know where to start. Read more
Published on 23 Oct 2009 by RepublicanStones
5.0 out of 5 stars Attempts to explore the facts behind the headlines,
"Why Blame Israel" by Neil Lochery attempts to get to the bottom of some of the persistant prejudices and untruths about Israel , and it's war against Arab terror , and to explore... Read more
Published on 3 May 2008 by Gary Selikow
4.0 out of 5 stars Detailed history up to 2004
With events moving so fast in the Middle East, this book is already outdated with regard to its possible scenarios for the future and the hopes based on the Geneva Accords of 2003. Read more
Published on 6 May 2006 by Pieter Uys
4.0 out of 5 stars The truth finally...
Finally a book that puts into words what Jews throughought the world are feeling. Israel has been buffeted from every croner of the globe for the last 40 years because of their... Read more
Published on 17 Nov 2004
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't believe the blurb
For a book that is billed on the sleeve as from an author 'outside the fray', the following excerpt from Dr Lochery's CV (found elsewhere) immediately suggests one should regard... Read more
Published on 5 July 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars No-brainwashing. Guaranteed
Two anonimous reviwers have already rated it with one star, but each of them with opposite arguments. Each claimed it was propaganda for the other side. Read more
Published on 23 Jun 2004 by "cafonsof"
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for all people interested in understanding
This book is clearly written and covers an extremely emotive subject with a surgical degree of calm and reasonned thought. Read more
Published on 23 Jun 2004 by Emma
1.0 out of 5 stars Hardly facts behind the headlines
Unfortunetly this books offers exactly the opposite of it what it claims to do. Anyone wishing to look at the Israeli and Palestinian conflict without true understanding of the... Read more
Published on 21 Jun 2004 by Mr. P. Mullins
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