The Complete Idiot's Guide to Middle East Conflict

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Middle East Conflict

3.8 17
by Mitchell G. Bard
     
 

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Fully updated fourth edition.

The Middle East is perhaps the most tumultuous area on earth, with ancient battles still being fought. This updated guide offers an intense look— through the lens of present-day knowledge—at current events and the everchanging political and social landscape, as well as the region’s history. And it addresses:

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Overview

Fully updated fourth edition.

The Middle East is perhaps the most tumultuous area on earth, with ancient battles still being fought. This updated guide offers an intense look— through the lens of present-day knowledge—at current events and the everchanging political and social landscape, as well as the region’s history. And it addresses:

•The re-arming of Hezbollah
•Iran’s increased threat of acquiring nuclear weapons
•The odds of Palestinian unity in peace talks
•The evacuation from Gaza

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781592577910
Publisher:
DK
Publication date:
09/02/2008
Series:
Complete Idiot's Guide Series
Pages:
496
Product dimensions:
7.30(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Mitchell G. Bard, Ph.D., is one of the country’s foremost experts on U.S.-Middle East policy and the author of 14 books, including The Complete Idiot’s Guide to World War II. Dr. Bard has appeared on Fox News, MSNBC, and other television and radio outlets. His work has been published in academic journals, magazines, and newspapers.

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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Middle East Conflict 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Rachel28RW More than 1 year ago
... then this is your best bet. I wanted reading material that was easy to comprehend and, most important, was unbiased. I haven't been educated much about the Middle East and was looking for an overview of the history of the region. I had only gotten through a little over 50 pages of the book before I had a nagging feeling that the author wasn't being totally fair. I had only to Google "Mitchell G. Bard" to find that he is the director of the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise and the Jewish Virtual Library. I visited the JVL and found several pages authored by Bard to be extremely troubling. He seems to enjoy focusing on the anti-Semitism of Arab states; the way in which he documents slurs and threats against Israel is disturbing. While Bard certainly has the right to express an opinion, I would much rather that he stick to the facts when writing material that is inevitably going to end up in the hands of a reader who knows very little about the Middle East. While the writing is simple and easy to comprehend, this is perhaps the only strength of the book (besides the bibliography, where, I assume, one who is interested in this region can find truly unbiased literature). I'm extremely disappointed in the franchise for choosing this author. If you're like me and want to find reading material about the Middle East that is not completely one-sided, I've included some books that NPR has recommended.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When looking at Media today one often hears the Arab view expressed that the Jews stole the land of the Palestinians and that they are 'colonizers' of the 'poor Palestinians' land'. This book shows the deep historic connection of the Jewish people to the land of their origins. A land where Jewish kings and prophets and judges roamed and where Jewish life flourished for many centuries in ancient Israel/Judea. It also reminds us of the 650,000 Jews that lived in British Palestine before Modern Israel's re-birth and the refusal of the lands Arabs to share the land with its Jewish inhabitants, preferring to try pushing the Jews out altogether.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a lucid historical chronology of the very complex Middle East Conflict. It is accurat, fair, balanced, responsible and improved from last 2005 edition. It was brought up to date in this 4th edition of 2009. This is the ABC of the conflict. The only criticism that I have is that because of space some events were either not mentioned or mentioned briefly. The San Remo League of nation declaration of Jewish state need was not mentioned. The Napoleon decree of 1799 in favor of a Jewish homeland was not mentioned. I highly recommend the book specifically for schools because of a didactic approach, easy language and cheap price.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
'The Complete Idiot's Guide to Middle East Conflict' is a decent jumping point book for those who know little if anything about the Middle East and its perplexing and ever changing history. This book should be read with an open mind and a willingness to verify some of the ¡°facts¡±. I found the book to also be Pro-Israeli. That is why the magic word for those reading this type of book is VARIFYþutake nothing as ¡°set in stone¡± Few writers¡ªeven the more scholarly ones can put together a book about the Middle East without offending some readers. Any book on the subject will create some feelings of bias and confounding. But if you are a total beginner (not an ¡°Idiot¡±) on the subject of the Middle East this book may be a decent starting point before going on to more scholarly and specific aspects on the subject.
Guest More than 1 year ago
While quite knowledgeable about the Middle East myself, I thought this book looked quite interesting and worth reading. I particularly enjoyed reading the similar book ¿Arabs and Israel for Beginners, ¿ by Ron David, which I really found to be informative and entertaining at the same time and made 6 stars on my own list. Unfortunately, ¿The Complete Idiot¿s Guide to the Middle East¿ was a total disappointment. Though fascinating on the surface, the book suffers major problems having to do with its credibility and its fairness. First, not all the relevant facts are presented. Certain things are covered in great detail while other equally important facts are glossed over, or neglected completely. I understand that not everything can be covered in such an introductory guide, but this book does a terrible job presenting a balanced perspective. The Arab perspective is almost totally absent from this book. For example, it emphasizes Jewish suffering in Europe in the 1920s through 1940s while ignoring or minimizing the dispossession of Palestinians and loss of their land as a result of Jewish immigration. The book also extols Israel¿s ¿Law of Return¿ for allowing Jews anywhere in the world a safe-haven, but neglects to even mention that the same law forbids millions of Palestinians who were actually born on the land from returning to their homes. Likewise, the entire book is written from the point of view of Israel. Second, the title is somehow misleading. The Middle East in my mind evokes many things: the Holy Land, Islam, Arabs, Iranians, etc. If we concern ourselves with ancient history as well, as this book does, then we have a vastly broad topic that includes many things. Reading this book, however, one senses little concern for this broad coverage and focus instead on a single narrow thread connecting all these topics: Jewish history. Thus the book discusses Egypt as a prelude to the story of the Israelites and Moses. Mesopotamia is alluded to only as a prelude to the Babylonian exile. Islam is even presented mostly from the perspective of 7th century Islamic-Judaic relationships. Coming to the modern age, the centrality of Israel and the Zionist movement to this book is never far off. Many pages are spent on the Nazi Holocaust ¿ something which never took place in the Middle East and actually has nothing to do with the Middle East. While it is of course OK to write a book on Jewish history, to call it a primer on the Middle East is misleading to readers. Understanding the conflict requires a balanced perspective, and also requires a better understanding of Islam and the Arabs since they make up the majority of that region. This book fails to deliver that. Perhaps the affiliation of Mitchell Bard with AICE (basically an Israeli PR firm) can explain the unbalanced perspective of this book?
Guest More than 1 year ago
Finally, a book that is honest! The Author tells it like it is and doesn't leave anything out. I think the last reviewers who posted were obviously ignorant about the Israeli-"Palestinian" Conflict. I would recommend this book to ANYONE who wants to know the TRUTH and not the propaganda you hear all the time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is INCREDIBLY biased to a Pro-Israeli viewpoint. The scholarship is weak, at best, and thus the outcome of the book is sad and 1-sided. Daniel Pipes? Please!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Just look at the names of the authors and the editorial consultant: Mitchell Bard & Daniel Pipes. ANYONE who has read ANYTHING on the Mideast is familiar with these names and their intense pro-Israeli views. It is truly sad that this book could be foisted on the unsuspecting reader as an introductory text. Shame on you, publisher!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Finally a book about the Middle East not weighted down by ideology. It's refreshing to read documented facts rather than hearsay. Anybody who wants an objective perspective on the Middle East and its problems should read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I can see how Israel's adversaries must be confounded by factual history. Particularly, Israel's internal Arab population and external neighbors will be enraged at the book's coverage of two events - the so-called 'massacre' at Deir Yassin and the bombing of the King David Hotel by the Irgun. Both events have been distorted and twisted into veritable myths by Israel's enemies. The history of Jerusalem as the heart of the Jewish people is well covered. I was amazed at the scope of this book, and pleased at the friendly format.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent book, well- researched and accessible. I have attempted to read histories on this topic and find that I get mired in the verbiage. This book is even- handed, well- organized and well -written. I recommend it to others who find the tightly packed words of densely written texts to be the perfect soporific every time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Unlike most authors, who have written on this subject, Bard brothers (so I assume) do not pick a bad guy and build their arguments to make their point. If you are looking for an educational material, this book is for your. If you have already made up your mind and are looking for facts/arguments to make your point stronger, you may still find this book helpful.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The title of this book is very deceptive, for it is not designed for idiots, complete or otherwise. It is a good springboard towards information gathering for people who never had an impulse to learn about the history of the region through the last 4-5 thousand years, or about its history in the last century or even in the last 36 years, but want to begin somewhere. For those who already made such a start, it is a good source book for looking up a forgotten fact or reference or a quote. It is remarkably balanced and the facts are accurate and verifiably so. One doesn't have to be an area expert to ascertain that. I've read a bunch of reviews of this book when it first came out - some berated it as propaganda material, plain and simple; others tried to be more subtle and dismissed the authors's viewes as biased *because* he is affiliated with a non-profit American foundation with ties to Israel. The revisionist post-zionist deconstructionists simply hated the book. Which made it even more imperative for me to go and get it and read it. I did and I liked what I read. This book is simply 'back to basics' - an attempt to present the history of the area, the history of the conflict without emotionalism, without blastering rhetoric and and bombast finger pointing. My suggestion is - don't rely on other people's opinions but form your own. Get the book, read it and see for yourself. If you like what you read, if it spurs your interest, if it improves your understanding - then it is a book worth reading, worth keeping and recommending to others.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Arab propagandists, and their left-wing Israeli and American sympathizers, have rewritten the history of the Middle EAst. This book goes back to tell the real facts. Bravo. Buy this book for a clear and accurate understanding of this fascinating area of the world
Guest More than 1 year ago
While this book is fun to read, it actually delves deeply into the issues at the heart of the conflict. Bard has done his homework and presented an objective and fair look at sensitive topics. This book is an excellent guide for those trying to determine whether what they read in the papers is based on fact or propaganda. Would make a great gift for college students and for those interested in the Middle East, no matter what their level of expertise. Even for people who think they 'know everything there is to know' about the Middle East, Bard has much to offer.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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