Customer Reviews for

Case for Israel

Average Rating 3.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

A MUST READ FOR ALL PEOPLE OF GOOD WILL WHO CONDEMN PREJUDICE

Written in a format that recognizes the arguments used by those who single out Israel for harsh judgment, the book uses established, verifiable facts and unassailable logic to refute those arguments and place the burden of explanation back on those who hold Israel to un...
Written in a format that recognizes the arguments used by those who single out Israel for harsh judgment, the book uses established, verifiable facts and unassailable logic to refute those arguments and place the burden of explanation back on those who hold Israel to unfair standards in the face of provocation by murderous atrocity. I eagerly await a reply by Chomsky and others who consistently overlook the despotic regimes of Israel's neighbors and other countries and, for reasons deep within their psyche, seek to villify the Jewish state. How can anybody who claims to stand up for the 'underdog' support movements that have consistenly rejected Israel's very existence, a two-state solution, and have fallen into the terrorists' trap of using murder to obtain sympathy in response to Israel's extremely legitimate efforts to prevent such murders of innocents? All one has to do is look at the dead on each side and see that many more Israeli women, chldren and innocents have been killed, whereas virtually all of the Palestineans killed have been men of terrorist age, with terrorist connections, often in their status of combatants. Unheard in the popular press, Dershowitz also makes the reader aware that, at the time of the UN Partition, the land awarded to the tiny Jewish state had a clear Jewish minority that had built the land up from a desert swampland. Read the book for more facts to enlighten!

posted by Anonymous on October 14, 2003

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

A hoax

Quite simply, the book Alan Dershowitz claims to have written is a hoax: (1) substantial swatches are lifted from another notorious hoax on the Israel-Palestine conflict, (2) it is replete with egregious falsifications, and (3) the few scholarly sources actually cit...
Quite simply, the book Alan Dershowitz claims to have written is a hoax: (1) substantial swatches are lifted from another notorious hoax on the Israel-Palestine conflict, (2) it is replete with egregious falsifications, and (3) the few scholarly sources actually cited are mangled beyond recognition. In this reply, I will only illustrate points (1) and (2). These, along with point (3), will be fully documented in a forthcoming monograph. In 1984, Joan Peters published From Time Immemorial, which claimed that Palestine was virtually empty on the eve of Zionist colonization, and that Palestinians are in fact foreigners who surreptitiously entered Palestine after the Zionists 'made the desert bloom.' The book is now widely recognized as a fraud. Baruch Kimmerling (of the Hebrew University) and Joel S. Migdal, in their authoritative study, Palestinians: The Making of a People, published by Harvard University Press, observe that Peters's book is 'based on materials out of context, and on distorted evidence,' and, citing my own conclusion that the book 'is the most spectacular fraud ever published on the Arab-Israeli conflict,' report that 'similar evaluations were expressed by notable historians' in Israel and Europe. Dershowitz states that he uses only a 'few sources' cited in the Peters hoax. In fact, fully 22 of the 52 endnotes in chapters 1-2 are lifted straight from her without any form of attribution. In his defense, Dershowitz claims that no foul play is involved because he checked Peters's original sources before citing them, a laughable argument were an undergraduate to make it before a plagiarism committee. Dershowitz focuses on a lengthy citation from Mark Twain to argue this point. Yet, although Dershowitz reproduces Peters's page references to Twain's book in his own endnote, the relevant quotes do not appear on these pages in the edition of Twain's book that Dershowitz cites. Furthermore, Dershowitz cites two paragraphs from Twain as continuous text, just as Peters cites them as continuous text, but in Twain's book the two paragraphs are separated by 87 pages. It would be impossible for anyone who checked the original source to make this error. Dershowitz similarly 'checked' Peters's other sources. Quoting a statement depicting the miserable fate of Jews in mid-19th century Jerusalem, Peters cites a British consular letter from 'Wm. T. Young to Viscount Canning.' Dershowitz cites the same statement as Peters, reporting that Young 'attributed the plight of the Jew in Jerusalem' to pervasive anti-Semitism. Turning to the original, however, we find that the relevant statement did not come from Young but, as is unmistakably clear to anyone who actually consulted the original, from an enclosed memorandum written by an 'A. Benisch' that Young was forwarding to Canning. One wonders if Dershowitz also consulted Peters's original source for the term 'turnspeak' - a coinage of Peters, which she says was inspired by George Orwell's 1984, but which Dershowitz, confounded by his massive borrowings from Peters, not once but twice credits directly to Orwell ('George Orwell's `turnspeak,'' 'Orwellian turnspeak'). On which pages of 1984 did Dershowitz find 'turnspeak'?

posted by Anonymous on November 24, 2003

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2006

    The Honest Truth

    Hard hitting, factual, clearly stated accounts of what Israel has been up against since the late 19th century. A must read for any student of near east politic and history.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2006

    Dull read but excellent points

    Well the delivery is typical of someone in his position but his points were convincing. One would have hoped that the Palestinians could have diplomatically achieved more substantial territories following 1947 but continuous malicious targeting of israeli civilians and denial of a right to exist to the jews makes it obvious to me that the jews should defend themselves by any necessary means.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2003

    A rational answer to critics of Israel

    Considering the complexities of the Middle East, Alan Dershowitz¿s ¿The Case for Israel¿ makes for easy reading, which is not to say that the author dumbs down his prose. Avoiding legal jargon, Dershowitz presents a series of rational arguments to counter those criticisms of the Jewish State which to him appear without merit. Since the author is Jewish, he could legitimately be accused of some bias. Yet some Jewish intellectuals, including Noam Chomsky, Rabbi Michael Lerner and Norman Finkelstein make a case for the other side as do numbers of Jewish students on our nation¿s campuses. Instead of setting down an essay to expound the case, he devotes a small chapter to each criticism of Israel and proceeds in legalistic prose to attack those rejoinders. Among the most important units are: 1) Have the Jews Exploited the Holocaust? 2) Did Israel Create the Arab Refugee Problem? 3) Was Arafat Right in Turning Down the Barak-Clinton Peace Proposal? 4) Is Israel a Racist State? 5) Is There Moral Equivalence between Palestinian Terrorists and Israeli Responses? 6) Are Critics of Israel Anti-Semites? Dershowitz points out that while the extreme right (Nazis, Fascists, and other hate-groups) have been the traditional enemies of Israel, today the Far Left finds it fashionable to condemn Israeli actions in the Middle East if not the very existence of the Jewish state. While the author finds nothing wrong with criticizing some Israeli policies such as the building of settlements, those critics who single out Israel¿s warts in a world that bears witness to genocidal conflicts in areas like Rwanda, Bosnia, and the Congo may indeed be guilty of anti-Semitism. Nor can a legitimate case be made for equating Israel¿s defensive actions with Palestinian terrorism in that the latter specifically targets non-combatants for suicide bombings while Israel regrets the loss of innocent Arab lives snuffed out largely because terrorist groups place military bases in the heart of civilian areas. The Clinton administration solution to the tension which would have given 95%-97% of the West Bank and all of Gaza back to the Palestinians and would have created a Palestinian state was accepted by Israel but rejected by Arafat, presumably because the PLO leader might have feared assassination by Hamas, Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations. The Far Left in America loves to think that it¿s looking out for the underdog and this book may not convince those who continue to believe that Israel occupies land for the fun of it rather than to seek out and neutralize so-called Arab militants (read: terrorists). Nonetheless Dershowitz makes a powerful case for showing that Israel, not the Palestinians, are the underdogs, in that the tiny Jewish state (which occupies a mere 1/5 of one percent of the land area of the Middle East) would be obliterated if it lost a single war. Israel emerges on the morally just side, a beleaguered nation who would live in peace with neighbors if not surrounded and greatly outnumbered by hostile forces.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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