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Cursed Victory: A History of Israel and the Occupied Territories Paperback – 4 Jun 2015

4.2 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (4 Jun. 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141017236
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141017235
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.4 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 308,555 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Bregman tells this bleak story well, and what a catalogue of grief it is ... A damning verdict (Max Hastings Sunday Times)

Bregman has also enjoyed unparalleled access to high-level sources that enabled him to quote directly from top-secret memos, letters, and intelligence reports that are unlikely ever to be made public ... Bregman's account of the conflict born of the cursed victory is intelligent, informative and rich in telling details. (Avi Shlaim Guardian)

The headlines notwithstanding, this is not primarily a book about who spied on whom. It is the best available book on the Israeli occupation of the Territories and why it should be ended ASAP; and one written with the kind of lucidity and insight only somebody who passionately loves his country can muster (Martin van Creveld)

A bombshell book... The nuggets provided in Bregman's book shed light on the extent of Israel's intelligence collection agencies' work not only in times of war, but also as Israel engaged with its neighbors in peace talks.... Bregman has a flair for exposing sensational details kept in secret by all parties for years (The Jewish Daily Forward)

Israeli intelligence eavesdropped on phone calls between President Bill Clinton and Syria's late strongman Hafez al-Assad during sensitive Middle East peace negotiations 15 years ago... Evidence is cited in verbatim transcripts of the calls revealed by political scientist and author Ahron Bregman in his forthcoming book Cursed Victory (Jeff Stein Newsweek)

Lucid ... timely ... Bregman has assets which lift this account above many on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. One is access to some hitherto secret material ... [Cursed Victory is] a highly readable study, an excellent starting point for those wanting to know more about how military victory turned into a tragedy (Donald MacIntyre The Independent)

Explosive.... [Bregman's] insight into the tragedy of post Six-Day-War Israel, which the title encapsulates in two words, is impeccable (Mira Bar Hillel The Oldie)

Although only nine years old in 1967, [Bregman's] insight into the tragedy of Israel after the Six Day War is impeccable (Independent Mira Bar Hillel)

Detailed and well thought-out... A former Israeli soldier in Lebanon, Mr Bregman knows his subject first-hand. In 1988 he left Israel, unhappy about the country's policy towards the Palestinians. As an academic at King's College London, he has accumulated copious documents, many of them secret and unpublished (Economist)

The definitive chronicle of how Israel's control over Palestinian life has transformed from a temporary system to a fully functioning colonial administration... Cursed Victory excels in unpacking exactly how Israel's administration of the occupation has adapted over five decades to ensure its continuation (The National (UAE))

Cursed Victory is briskly written ... [An] incisive, thoroughly documented and readable account (Adam Lebor Literary Review)

A well-researched, probing book. It is the work of a man troubled by his country's policies and the dilemmas with which those policies have saddled the people of Israel. The detail he has gleaned from often highly classified sources is fascinating and thought-provoking (The Australian)

The cry of an anguished conscience and a work of scholarship based on hitherto undisclosed material. The revelations are stunning (Frontline)

An intelligent, critical account... The book utilises to good effect unpublished intelligence files, transcripts of telephone calls and interviews with the many protagonists (The Jewish Chronicle)

Clear, accessible, readable ... Important, valuable and sober (Tribune)

His analysis is fair .... His excellent, meticulously researched book is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand what occupation has done to Israel as well as to its neighbours (Jeremy Bowen New Statesman) --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A well written and concise explanation of both the political ramifications and human tragedy of the Israeli occupation. The book paints in bleak detail the fundamental flaws in Israeli thinking and the political mistakes made. This is a book everybody should read, as far too few people appreciate what occurred when Israel was created.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The scholar served in the Israeli army as a major and has written several books on Israel, this being his fifth. It proved very timely to read, given what's happening there now. The author sticks to his topic and has been able to draw upon previously unavailable documents from the various Israeli administrations where the likes of Menachem Begin and others get to speak for themselves. Meanwhile, I don't know what this nonsense of "a self-loathing Jew" is about. It seems to be peremptory excuse not to take the scholarship and content seriously; likely a means of avoiding uncomfortable cognitive dissonance in facing up to the truth. There is no evidence of the author apologizing, simply reporting.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A compelling, moving and highly readable account of Israel’s brutal, even sadistic, arrogant and devious policies towards the Palestinian territories it has annexed, of Israel’s blatant disregard for international law and human rights, and of the humiliation it metes out to the Palestinian population at large and the systematic depredation it inflicts on it. Bregman also illuminates the ignominious rôle of the Israeli Supreme Court in giving a cloak of legitimacy to acts that are otherwise illegal. Some extremists in Hamas might wish to see Israel expunged from the map, but is that so different from Israeli policy to tease Palestinians out of their shrinking homelands – once at least referred to by the Israeli government as, ‘enemy countries’ - so that they would become Arab-free (the Israeli government’s 1967 ‘Operational Principles’)? This book should be compulsory reading for every UK and US parliamentarian whose policies towards Israel seem to be based on wilful blindness. That the author is himself Jewish makes this a particularly powerful indictment. It is nothing short of a tragedy that the voices of so many brave Jews, appalled by what has been, is still being, done ‘in their name’ by successive Israeli governments go unheeded.
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Format: Hardcover
shows how the israeli government promised enlightened occupation quickly turned into horror for the occupied the every day justification of the land grabs,demolishing peoples homes,assassinations of its opponents who it deems terrorists regardless of civilian casualties,using live rounds against demonstrators.brutality condemned by the UN supported by the US .
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Format: Hardcover
I'm reading a library copy, but it's def worth buying. I must make it clear that I do not share the author's political perspective. But it is a testament to the quality of his research and his writing that I'm happy to give his book 5 stars. His information is good, reliable and very well researched. He writes clearly for the interested layman (ie it isn't a stuffy academic tome). He tells the story chronologically with very intelligent insights and analyses. He askes pertinsnt questions. I would say thsat I don't think there is as better book on Israel, the Palerstinians and the Territories than this. He writes as an Israeli who sees thinghs from an outside but still Israeli perspective ie he isn't a non-Israeli writing merely (anti Israel/Zionist...) propgsnda for effect. He isn't a journo. He writes with integrity. This is why I respect whst he says even if I don't agree with all his opinions.
Well done Mr Bregman!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you wish to understand how the Israelis and the Palestinians got themselves into the positions they are now in, "Cursed Victory", is the book to read. Ahron Bregman's credibility is enhanced by the fact that: (a) he is an Israeli and (b) he has over the years had access to many of the people who were directly involved and the documents that they produced at the time.
Hopefully such a detailed, objective account of all that has gone wrong in the past, will help both sides in the continuing conflict to find a way to resolve it to the benefit of all concerned, sometime in the future.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An honest and , at times, disturbing account of the treatment of Palestinians by the Jewish state. Paradoxes abound: when will Israel recognise the right of Palestinians to aspire to statehood? When will it finally see sense?
Bregman is to be commended for having tne courage to write a book critical of the actions of his home country.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent work that draws on previously unavailable evidence. It is the work of a Zionist two-stater. It would be very useful if he were now to turn his attention to the occupation that followed the victory of 1947-8; indeed, also to the history of the Yishuv and its relations with Britain and the US that made that victory possible.
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