Sharing the Promised Land: A Tale of Israelis and Palestinians

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On September 13, 1993 the world watched, wept and cheered as Israeli and Palestinian leaders shook hands on the White House lawn. Soon after, the PLO returned from exile and Israeli soldiers withdrew from Palestinian cities. Then Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated, Benjamin Netanyahu brought the peace process to a halt, settlements continued, the Palestinian economy went into free fall. On both sides, euphoria faded and hopes collapsed.
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Overview

On September 13, 1993 the world watched, wept and cheered as Israeli and Palestinian leaders shook hands on the White House lawn. Soon after, the PLO returned from exile and Israeli soldiers withdrew from Palestinian cities. Then Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated, Benjamin Netanyahu brought the peace process to a halt, settlements continued, the Palestinian economy went into free fall. On both sides, euphoria faded and hopes collapsed.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This is a highly readable book about the trials and tribulations of Arabs and Jews in Israel today. Hiro, an Indian-born veteran journalist who has written extensively on the contemporary Middle East, provides a fascinating tale of hopes and shattered dreams among Palestinians and Israelis. Furthermore, the author goes beyond the headlines to reveal the contours of everyday struggles by ordinary people and their leaders. The book profiles the main players in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and describes the competing claims of both sides to the "Promised Land." The conflict between secular and religious groups in both Jewish and Arab communities is described in detail, as is the increasingly important role of the Israeli Arabs in consolidating the peace process. The author also describes, in a balanced and objective fashion, internal contradictions within Palestinian and Israeli societies. This engaging book is highly recommended for both lay readers and students of the Arab-Israeli conflict.--Nader Entessar, Spring Hill Coll., Mobile, AL Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781566563192
  • Publisher: Interlink Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/28/1999
  • Pages: 420
  • Product dimensions: 5.81 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 1.15 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2001

    kind of, sort of...a must read

    No matter how much you know about the situation in the Middle East, it is always good to know a little more. For instance, most people who have some interest in the situation, have a pretty sound grasp of the Israeli (that is Jewish) side of the history. The stories of Ben Gurion, Begin, et al. are rather well known. This book, however, tries the enviable task of giving equal time to the Palestinian situation as to the Jews. The terms Hamas, Fatah, Jihad should be familiar by the end of this book. As all books do, though, this one has a slant: even though it aims to be neutral, the slant seems to be in favor of the Palestinians, especially in the West Bank. Maybe if the writer, put the Jewish situation into more of a historical context, the zealots of the West Bank might seem less fanatic. This is not an endorsement of Jewish settlement in the 'occupied territories' just a need to better understand why this land is so valuable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2002

    Recycled rhetoric, misleading title.

    Mr. Hiro makes a promising start, discussing territorial and cultural dilemmas of Arab-Jewish coexistence. After about fifty pages, however, he shifts to a rehash of tired old attacks on Israel's heroic 'official' history. (By now, we all know that Jews committed atrocities in 1948, and that far more Arabs have died in the conflict than Jews - familiar points that prove very little.) Then he offers cartoonish depictions of contemporary Israeli and Palestinian society. He is especially simplistic in his portrait of Israel, reducing the rifts among Israeli Jews to an imagined debate between two composite characters, an Ashkenazi Sabra and a Sephardi immigrant. The only real Jews who speak at length are marginal figures: the ultra-orthodox of Jerusalem, for example, or ultra-Zionist settlers. Hiro believes this focus is justified, because these extremes control Israeli policy. Certainly, Israel's history and parliamentary structure have given disproportionate power to fringe groups, but Hiro inflates this critique into an overheated attack on Israeli legitimacy. In assessing the failed peace process, Hiro offers the obvious conclusions that Oslo was fundamentally flawed, and that ongoing Jewish settlement has inflamed Palestinian rejectionism. The book may be of some value to readers who have never heard the Palestinian side of the argument. Mr. Hiro is an engaging writer with a lively, journalistic style. But there is little new material here, and certainly no blueprint for sharing anything.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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