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Image and Reality: Israel-Palestine Conflict Paperback – 12 Oct 1995

4.3 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Verso Books (12 Oct. 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 185984040X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1859840405
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.2 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,844,330 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

.".. this thoroughly documented book is guaranteed to stimulate and provoke. It will be required reading in the continuing war of the historians."--William Quandt, "Foreign Affairs".".. the most revealing study of the historical background of the conflict and the current peace agreement."--Noam Chomsky, "Guardian Weekly".".. a comprehensive critique of the Zionist premises of Israeli historical writing ... new interpretations of the origins of the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israel wars ..."--"Middle East Report".".. a thought-provoking work which calls into question many accepted 'truths' associated with the Israel-Palestine conflict."--"Middle East Journal""Here is a book not to be missed."--"Le Monde Diplomatique".".. both an impressive analysis of Zionist ideology and a searing but scholarly attack on Israel's treatment of the Arab's since 1948."--Lord Ian Gilmour, "London Review of Books".".. hard-hitting and iconoclastic, but with ... arguments securely buttressed by thorough and comprehensive research."--"Middle East International".".. well-documented, scholarly ... a valuable addition to any collection on the Israel-Palestine conflict."--"The Center for Policy Analysis on Palestine".".. will challenge the most cherished beliefs of Israel's supporters ..."--"The Royal Institute of International Affairs".".. one of the best and boldest critical works on the Israel-Palestine conflict."--"Millennium (Journal of International Studies)"

About the Author

Norman G. Finkelstein is the author of "A Nation on Trial" (with Ruth Bettina Birn), named a notable book for 1998 by the "New York Times Book Review," and "Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict."

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Somebody, I forget exactly who, pointed out that Norman Finkelstein's books about the Arab-Israeli conflict are not actually works of Middle Eastern history but books about American history. This is essentially true, in that Finkelstein does not write narrative history or even critical history; he is essentially a scholarly critic of American opinion on the conflict, and the general tendency of his work is to point out the gap between what American writers have tended to say about the conflict and what the historical record actually shows. So, the meat of this book is his relentless, meticulous and devastating demolition job on Joan Peters' book "From Time Immemorial", a work that no professional historian is now willing to cite but which still has a loyal and uncritical readership out there among people who think that the Israeli government can do no wrong.

It can be seen, therefore, that criticising Finkelstein for having an "agenda" is beside the point. It's never very to the point anyway, since everybody who writes a book about anything whatever has an agenda, in that they have something that they want to say about the subject. Finkelstein's agenda is simply open for anyone to see. This book also contains his relatively brief and offhand dismissal of Michael Oren's "Six Days of June", which is interesting partly because that book is often cited as an "objective" history of the Six Day War, and Finkelstein doesn't find it difficult to prove that it is nothing of the sort, being heavily biased in favour of the Israeli side.

He performs an essential public service, and has been vilified and slandered for doing so.
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Format: Paperback
Dr. Norman Finkelstein has written a brilliant and scholarly expose of
the Israel-Palestine conflict. He is not a dispassionate historian/scholar
nor does he pretend to be. He dedicates the book to his parents,
survivors of the Warsaw Ghetto and the Nazi extermination camps:
"May I never forget or forgive what was done to them."

Finkelstein's keen intellect is breathtaking. His painstaking research
which supports the evidence how the "reality" of the causes of the
conflict is vastly different than the "image" presented to us by the media
is a marvel to behold.

My favorite chapters in the book are chapters 2 and 4.

In Chapter 2, he discusses Joan Peters book "From Time Immemorial"
and masterfully exposes it as a hoax. The crux of Peters' thesis was
that "Palestine was, literally, 'uninhabited' on the eve of the Zionist
colonization; and that if the Arab population did not materialize, literally,
ex nihilo in Palestine, it did surreptitiously enter to exploit the economic
opportunities that the Jews created when they made the 'desert bloom'." By that logic, most Palestinians were not even there in 1948 to be expelled from their homes.
The fact that such a threadbare hoax can be published in this country
is not surprising. But the fact that this book received accolades from
journalists and scholars alike, from such luminaries as Daniel Pipes,
Sidney Zion, Holocaust historian Lucy Dawidowicz, and Nobel
peace prize laureate Elie Wiesel, speaks volumes about the American
commissar culture.
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Format: Paperback
Impassioned and mercilessly detailed analyses of various aspects of the Israel-Palestine conflict. Finkelstein is quite obvious in his political biases, which in many ways makes it easier to trust him because you know what you need to adjust for. A distinctly American kind of radical, and that's not a put down.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a meticulous exposition of the multitude of
propaganda theories that have been peddled as truth, and
are now accepted as the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. It is concise and very well researched. An
essential read for anyone who is interested in the history of this conflict.
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Format: Paperback
This book is only for those who are serious about understanding one of the longest, and seemingly confusing conflicts in modern history.

Dr. Finkelstein's bold and very thorough analysis does an outstanding job at dissecting most of the greatest myths about the Palestine/Israel conflict. He covers the entire conflict, starting with the reasons for creating a Jewish state in the first place, the real source of Palestinian resistance to the creation of such a state (the fear of expulsion and/or oppression), and Israel's cunning ability to exploit narrow historical opportunities in order to expand its state.

I heard there were efforts to silence this book, and after reading it, I perfectly understand why- it exposes several parts of the American intellectual community as complete frauds.

15 years on, this book remains remarkably relevant to what's going on today.
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