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O Jerusalem! Paperback – 1 May 1988

4.8 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 635 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; Touchstone ed edition (1 May 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671662414
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671662417
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 3.6 x 21.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 336,685 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"A monumental work!"

-- "Cleveland Press"

"Moving, fascinating, informative.... No other book on this subject...comes close to O Jerusalem!"

-- "Los Angeles Times"

"It reads like a whodunit, and you turn page after page to see what happens next....The pace is so swift, the drama so heightened by alternating flashes of tragedy and comedy that one has to stop frequently to catch one's breath and marvel."

-- "The New York Times Book Review"

"A remarkable book...a history that not only clarifies the military and political events of the war but brings its human dimensions vividly to life."

-- "The National Observer"

"A story as dramatic, as miraculous, as full of wonders as any ever told."

-- "The New York Times Book Review"

From the Back Cover

Here is the classic retelling of the spellbinding events of the birth of Israel.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
One can nitpick -- vague timelines, some wrong presumptions -- but one cannot deny that this is a book which is long on fact and even longer on good storytelling. The authors have the usual "orientalist" anti-Arabism in the style of the book -- Arabs "swarm" and do "frenzied" things and are compared to locusts traveling at one point. The authors maintain a Labor Zionist emphasis, e.g. the Irgun and Lehi Zionists are called terrorists (please let the reader decide!) and it is clear that the LAbor Zionists are getting "home team" coverage, but the authors do not suppress certain facts, e.g. they do dispute as a result of their investigation the old (and today discarded) contention that Arabs fled as a result of an evacuation policy by Arab leaders and state more accurately that Arabs fled form fear of war, terroristic violence and forced expulsion. It also looks as if they talked to everyone, Jewish, Arab, and British who was there. A classic of popular history, by no means the last word, but certainly one of the best.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It's hard to find an unbiased view and account of this contentious topic. Happily I can report that this meets these criterions. The author is neither an Abdullah nor a Finkelman. The book is a complete day by day blow by blow account of the events from pre-partition to shortly after. What it is not is a history of the land and the problem. Do not expect to be any clearer on who is to blame or who has real claim to the land. I would have liked this, but this was not the aim of the book.

What you get is a gripping step by step story of who did what and when. I have no idea where they got such detailed information, or even how accurate it is, but regardless it makes for a great read. I would like the book to have gone on further and covered later events, but it never promised this so I can not complain.

Over all this is a great historical account. Certainly worth reading to lift some of the fog around partition, and its bloody events.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book was delivered both promptly and with a kind note from the supplier wishing me enjoyment in reading same.

The depth of preparation by the Zionists can only be described as amazing. The one factor that the Palestinians missed is that for the Jews there was nowhere else to go after the Holocaust. A very well educated former German population had lost everything so they were ripe for a fresh start some where else and Palestine was the only viable option. The motivation of the Jews was bound to be the stronger of the two.

At the same time the British were having to face up to the reality that they were not the world power that they formerly thought that they were. Whatever the British sympathy for the Arabs it would be no match for the Jewish international organisation and the secret weapon of Rothschild's bank in America.

The book itself didn't seem to be particularly partisan towards either side and seems an accurate record of the final days of colonial empire in the Middle East and the foundation of a modern nation. A very good read.about a city that almost by accident had became the focus of the three of the worlds major religions.
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By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 2 May 2008
Format: Hardcover
This monumental work is the most gripping and informative account I've read about the rebirth of Israel in 1948. Of course the focus is on Jerusalem and the text does not cover the war in Galilee or the South in any detail. The work includes the roles of famous persons and the experiences of ordinary people in equal measure.

Part 1: A Time To Mourn And A Time To Dance covers the UN decision in favour of partition, the Arab reaction, some background history - ancient Israel as well as the British Mandate period - and the various missions by both sides to procure arms.

Part 2: A House Divided, deals with the beginning of hostilities and unrest in the city, the deteriorating situation on the Tel Aviv- Jerusalem road, various horrific bombings of certain landmark buildings, the intensifying struggle for the city and the different Arab forces involved in the war.

Part 3: A City Besieged, concentrates on the harrowing struggle to hang on to the Jewish quarter of the old city from March 20 to May 13 of 1948. It includes an account of the tragic events at the village of Deir Yassin, the veracity of which is still in dispute today.

Part 4: These Shall Stand describes the movements of the various Arab forces and the Jewish response. It provides details of the Arab Legion attack on the city, Jewish counterattacks, the battle of Latrun, the loss of the Jewish quarter in the old city, and the building of a new road from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Finally Israel was established but it would only regain the old city in 1967.

The Epilogue looks at the aftermath of the war of independence and takes stock of the terrible losses.
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Format: Paperback
I very much enjoyed this book. It was well-written and well-researched. I also thought the authors were fair to all parties concerned, especially the Jews and the Arabs. My husband made the comment that he had thought the Jews had won through organization but, after reading the book, he thought otherwise. I was surprised by the involvement of the British. Excellent book.
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