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The Anatomy of Israel's Survival

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The Anatomy of Israel's Survival

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The Anatomy of Israel's Survival
By Hirsh Goodman
PublicAffairs, (2011)
ISBN: 978-1586485290

Reviewed by Simone Bonim - October 5, 2011

Can Israel survive? Of course it can, and it will. The question is, however, what shape will this survival take, and what will Israel look like when everything is said and done. The problems facing Israel are myriad. Not only are there economic and political forces aligned against Israel, but there are also demographic ones, as well as environmental problems that range from dwindling water supplies to pollution. Israel must also deal with internal discourse as well as external, age-old animosities that rage against a Jewish state, in any form. So what does all this mean? Not very much, and a great deal...

Even before its modern resurrection, Israel faced both internal and external problems. The names of the problems may have changed, but many problems still need to be faced from dealing with her neighbors to finding a way to ensure that the secular and religious factions within Israel can work together for the greater good.

In The Anatomy of Israel's Survival, Hirsh Goodman looks at the problems facing modern day Israel, including the problems associated with some of the various peace plans bandied especially those concerning the establishment of a Palestinian state. An Israeli journalist and security analyst who immigrated to Israel from South Africa sets the record straight, not only about the dangers that face Israel, but also what must be done to ensure that Israel remains a free, and secure nation. Along the way, Goodman refutes many of the antisemitic claims made against Israel, including the oft heard claim that Israel is an apartheid state. Goodman lived in South Africa in the fifties and sixties, he knows the difference, and in clear and concise language he shows that rather than being an apartheid state, Israel is a democratic, racially and religiously mixed country where Jews, Arabs, and Christians live side by side, as Israel citizens. Granted, everything is not sunshine and roses, but everyone who lives in Israel, no matter what their religion, has the freedom to worship as they please, has equal access to social services, and members from all segments of society participate in the political structure of the country.

In The Anatomy of Israel's Survival Goodman shows that America has not always been the 'best friend' to Israel as portrayed in the media. That the distrust and hatred that exists between Hamas in Gaza and Fatah on the West Bank, makes it impossible to create a unified state consisting of the two regions. That Iran and other Arab states pose a military risk to Israel, a risk that could destabilize the middle east and spark an international conflict. The list goes on..., but this is not just a list of problems. It is also a list of solutions. Goodman clearly delineates the problems that draw into question Israel's survival, and using his knowledge of the region and his training as a security analyst, he offers realistic solutions to these problems.

Up-to-date and taking into consideration the 'Arab Spring', The Anatomy of Israel's Survival is a book that should be read by anyone with an interest in Israel's long-term survival, middle east affairs, and the history of Israel.

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