The Jewish Eye
The Arab - Israeli Conflict in Historical Perspective
By Sabina Citron
Gefen Publishing House: Jerusalem and New York, (2006)
Reviewed by Anna Dogole - November 27, 2006
The Arab - Israeli Conflict had its inception well before the creation of the modern State of Israel, and the ongoing conflict has been fuelled by antisemitism, Arab propaganda and disinformation, and by a world body that has been blinded by oil. In The Indictment: The Arab - Israeli Conflict in Historical Perspective, Sabina Citron wades through the towers of disinformation and revisionist history now associated with the conflict and lays forth a clear, passionate, and accurate account of the conflict.
For anyone interested in the Middle East, Islamic Terrorism, or the survival of the State of Israel, this is an invaluable book. Not only does it examine the foundations of the Arab - Israeli conflict and how it has played out over the years, but it also puts these events in a global and historic perspective, showing how Christian antisemitism has contributed to the continuation of the conflict. Citron illustrates how the actions of supposedly neutral entities, such as the United Nations, have encouraged the Arabs to keep fighting, even when a peaceful resolution to the conflict might have been achievable. She also shows how the actions, and inactions of some organizations and governments have essentially given the 'green light' to Arabs whose stated goal is the murder of all Jews and the destruction of the State of Israel. For example when Hezbollah terrorist crossed from Lebanon into Israel and kidnaped three Israeli solider in 2000, several UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon) soldiers not only watched but also filmed the kidnaping. Not only did they do nothing to stop it (in part, it turns out, because some of the UNIFIL soldiers had been bribed), but they never bother to 'tell' the Israelis that it had happened. Worse, when it became well known that they had seen the event, and recorded it, the UN refused to let the Israelis see an uncensored copy of the tape!
Most telling, Citron shows the how the prevalence of antisemitism, especially in the 'Christian' West and in Islamic countries, has made for a ready-made audience for Arab propaganda. She shows this is most particularly obvious in a large number of Universities in the West who have advocated boycotts of Israeli products - and academicians.
Citron clearly illustrates how the current theories on the conflict are irrationally skewed against Israel. For example, you can hardly pick up a newspaper or listen to a politician without hearing something along the lines that, "Islamic terrorism and all the 'problems' in the Middle East could be solved overnight if 'just' the Israelis would just make enough concessions with the Palestinians and agree to a two-state solution." She then goes on to explain why this 'theory' is horribly flawed, and why the intentions of those that accept it must be questioned. A detailed discussion on whom the Palestinians are (or at least claim to be) and why their claim to a Palestinian homeland is invalid.
The Indictment is a detailed account of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and account that does not pull any punches. Citron, a Holocaust survivor and fervent fighter against Nazi propagandists in Canada, has done an excellent job in organizing, consolidating, and transforming a plethora of information into a handy and readable overview on the Arab-Israeli conflict, and it many facets. The Indictment is an eye-opening book that should be required reading in all University history and political science courses, and it should be read by every politician and 'official' dealing with any aspect of Middle Eastern policy. Authoritative and edifying, the information presented in The Indictment is essential knowledge for anyone who truly wants to understand the foundations, execution, and potential outcomes of this ongoing conflict. For those well versed on this topic, you will find that much of the information presented in this text has been reported on before. However you will find that having it all combined in one text makes this book an ideal reference guide on the subject. In addition, Citron has included some useful appendices to the text, including a copy of the Palestinian National Charter, a copy of the UN Security Council Resolution 242, and several telling maps. The text also includes a bibliography that will be useful to anyone wishing to delve further into this contentious topic.
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- The Rape of Palestine and the Struggle of Jerusalem, by Lionel I. Casper
A concise, pro-Zionist history of the modern state of Israel, with a detailed analysis of the events that have laid the foundations of the current Arab-Israeli conflict.
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