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Israel's Border Wars, 1949-56: Arab Infiltration, Israeli Retaliation and the Countdown to the Suez War Hardcover – 1 Oct 1993

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 463 pages
  • Publisher: Clarendon Press (1 Oct. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0198278500
  • ISBN-13: 978-0198278504
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,800,583 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


Timely ... an impressive work, scholarly, balanced and searching ... Morris lets the facts speak for themselves (The Observer)

There can be nothing but praise for Dr Morris's latest book ... makes uncomfortable reading, but is nevertheless of fundamental importance for understanding the evolution of Israeli policy and the attitude of the major powers, particularly Britain and the United States (Jewish Chronicle)

Morris analyses effectively the interplay between different Israeli decision-making authorities, military and civilian, local and central ... this book confirms and lends depth to the authoritative picture of the Arab exodus in Morris's previous work ... Morris's works provide the fullest, best documented, and most fair-minded examination of the subject yet published. They are likely to remain the standard works on the topic for the foreseeable future. (Mediterranean Historical Review) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

This revised and updated paperback edition of a highly successful study looks at the development of Israel-Arab relations during the formative years 1949 to 1956, focusing on Arab infiltration into Israel and Israeli retaliation. Palestinian refugee raiding and cross-border attacks by Egyptian-controlled irregulars and commandos were a core phenomenon during this period and one of the chief causes of Israel's invasion of Egypt in 1956. This pioneering study, which has been expanded on the basis of much new, and recently declassified material from the IDF, deepens our understanding of the current situation in the Middle East, and of the prospects for a lasting peace there. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Format: Paperback
Israel's leading revisionist historian returns to the archives and argues that Israel was ultimately the party most responsible for keeping the Arab-Israeli conflict going right after the 1948 war. With their eyes on gaining more Arab territory, Israeli leaders did not take advantage of the peace offers coming from Jordan and Syria. Most important, according to Morris, Israelis misinterpreted the many thousands of Arab infiltrators each year into their country, turning simple refugees trying to reclaim their houses and farmers working their fields into politically motivated enemies. Far from sponsoring these attacks, Arab regimes actually opposed them. Oblivious to the limited, even defensive nature of 90 percent of the raids, Israelis retaliated against Arab neighbors with great force, killing Arab civilians without mercy. This in turn led Arab governments to reply by organizing state-run guerrillas, known as fedayeen. Before you know it, the Suez War resulted, and with it the enduring enmity that has long characterized the Arab-Israeli conflict. Like revisionist historians reviewing Soviet-U.S. relations, Morris is determined to show, against all experience and commonsense, that the democratic and liberal country is the one that initiated, maintained, and benefited from conflicts. Let's just say that if David Ben-Gurion was, in Morris' description, a "virtuoso manipulator of facts," then Morris has established himself as a virtuoso manipulator of archival records.
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