Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Recommended Reading

by Daniel Lindley


Zeev Maoz - Defending the Holy Land

Probably the best comprehensive history on Israel's wars.

Benny Morris - Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab conflict

Has the best account of the Nakba and is worth reading just for the section on 1947-49. However Morris seems to get caught up in the Israeli nationalist fervour by the time he gets to 1967, where the book starts to go awry.

Noam Chomsky - The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel and the Palestinians.

Was originally published in 1983 so it focuses mainly on the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon
despite being updated in 2002. Still definitely worth reading.

Gideon Levy - The Punishment of Gaza

A short but concise book on Israel's policies towards Gaza in recent years.

Norman Finkelstein - Beyond Chutzpah

The second half of this book is probably the most comprehensive account of Israeli human rights abuses during the Second Intifada.

Jimmy Carter - Palestine: Peace not Apartheid

Doesn't really contain anything new but is a decent explanation of the present situation by an internationally respected figure. However chapter 16 on The Wall is especially informative, possibly the best (short) work on the topic.

Shlomo Ben-Ami - Scars of War, Wounds of Peace

Again, nothing particularly new except that Ben Ami is former Israeli Foreign Minister and was the chief Israeli negotiatior at Camp David and Taba so his account carries some weight.

Avner Yaniv - Dilemmas of Security: Politics, Strategy and the Israeli Experience in Lebanon

A lesser known work but probably the best analysis of Israel's occupation of and wars with Lebanon, and is also relevant to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Robert Fisk: The Great War for Civilisation: The Conquest of the Middle East

About Western policy towards the Middle-east in general and at 1,392 pages is pretty comprehensive. Chapters 11-13 are on the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Some Articles

Dov Weisglass interview with Haaretz - "The Big Freeze"

Especially important as he explains the reasons for Israel's 'disengagement' from Gaza.

"The significance of the disengagement plan is the freezing of the peace process... When you freeze that process, you prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state and you prevent a discussion on the refugees, the borders and Jerusalem. Disengagement supplies the amount of formaldehyde that is necessary so there will not be a political process with the Palestinians."

Vanity Fair - The Gaza Bombshell

Exposes how the US, Israel and some elements of the Palestinian Authority attempted a military coup against Hamas in Gaza after it won the Palestinian elections, and then when Hamas defeated the botched coup attempt the perpetrators tried to twist what actually happened into a "Hamas coup in Gaza".

"After failing to anticipate Hamas’s victory over Fatah in the 2006 Palestinian election, the White House cooked up yet another scandalously covert and self-defeating Middle East debacle: part Iran-contra, part Bay of Pigs. With confidential documents, corroborated by outraged former and current U.S. officials, the author reveals how President Bush, Condoleezza Rice, and Deputy National-Security Adviser Elliott Abrams backed an armed force under Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, touching off a bloody civil war in Gaza and leaving Hamas stronger than ever."

Maariv feature documents "settlement freeze" sham

“The construction momentum in Judea and Samaria is the same as when it was at its peak,” Katz announced happily to Likud activists in the settlement of Revava on Tuesday evening. “Thousands of housing units are being built everywhere. I never liked the freeze. Nobody in the security cabinet likes the freeze. It was a mistake. You can’t take people and freeze them. That is no solution. The government will ensure that the construction momentum will resume this September. In any case, I know that as far as I am concerned, there is no freeze.”Katz toured the settlements for an entire day to observe the great construction boom already taking place on the ground, precisely at a time that the state is trying to show the world that it is limiting construction. The freeze, it turns out, was simply an opportunity to unfreeze land and prepare it for construction. The government froze new houses but allowed the settlers to complete houses for which the foundations had been laid. The result on the ground is unimaginable. Thousands of settlers rushed to work on what they had begun, before any new edicts could arrive.

The London Review of Books: The Great Middle East Peace Process Scam

Details Of The Olmert Peace Plan For The West Bank

An excellent blog post on one aspect of why these "peace summits" never seem to go anywhere.

How Israel torpedoed its ceasefire with Hamas to produce a casus belli

Who started the 2008/09 Israel-Hamas War?

Two similar articles On how Israel broke a ceasefire with Hamas (which Israel itself admits "Hamas was careful to maintain") in order to justify invading Gaza.


Norman Finkelstein vs Shlomo Ben Ami transcript.

Edited video of debate: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6.

Shlomo Ben Ami: "If I were a Palestinian, I would have rejected Camp David as well"

Noam Chomsky vs Alan Dershowitz transcript


Norman Finkelstein vs Alan Dershowitz: Part 1, Part 2.

A classic :)

Is Israel a Rogue State? Robert Fisk vs Dan Diker

War or Peace? Norman Finkelstein vs Dan Diker

Gideon Levy on Middle East Peace


Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict (Goldstone Report)

The International Court of Justice's Ruling on the Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

United Nations Report on Israeli Attack of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla

Amnesty International - 22 Days of Death and Destruction

Human Rights Watch - Rain of Fire: Israel's Unlawful Use of White Phosphorus in Gaza

B'Tselem - Land Grab: Israel's Settlement Policy in the West Bank

B'Tselem - Maps

B'Tselem/Association for Civil Rights in Israel - Ghost Town: Israel's Separation Policy and Forced Eviction of Palestinians from the Center of Hebron

Hamas' letter to Obama

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