- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Publisher: New Press, The; 1st edition (September 19, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 156584789X
- ISBN-13: 978-1565847897
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 7.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 12 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,068,587 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Other Israel: Voices of Refusal and Dissent 1st Edition
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This book proves once again that it is possible and even necessary to be critical of the policies of one's government without being considered a traitor.
Though many of these writers would repudiate the idea of gratitude as condescending, the citizens of the future Palestinian state will owe much to the moral rigor and intellectual fortitude of "the other Israelis, " who keep alive the distinction between Jewish humanism and Zionist Revisionism.
About the Author
Anthony Lewis is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner. He was a columnist for the New York Times from 1969 to 2001, and is James Madison Visiting Professor at Columbia University. Tom Segev is the author of The Seventh Million; One Palestine, Complete; and Elvis in Jerusalem, and a columnist for Israel's leading daily newspaper, Ha'aretz. Roane Carey is copy chief at the Nation. Jonathan Shainin is on the staff of The New Press.
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In today's oversimplified coverage of the Middle East conflict that we see on the media, "The Other Israel" will take you on a journey to places you've never been before, and may very well make you doubt what you once believed.
These 37 essays are a contribution by Jewish novelists, historians, journalists, activists, as well as several military officers who have refused to serve in the occupied territories. All who hope that their voices will be heard around the world, and especially by their own people who, like most in America, will have their perceptions shaped by what the government tells them, what they see on the media, and often more than not, what they don't see.
As a collective, the essays represent a growing discontented movement within Israel itself that questions the morality of the occupation, the mindset upon which it has endured, the terrible hardship on the Palestinian people, and the effect on Israeli society as a whole.
No longer able to ignore their moral convictions, and acutely aware of the turmoil beset both sides, these writers expose the failings of the past peace processes, the myths that have been perpetuated over the years, and the apartheid conditions the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land has created. They condemn what the occupation has done to the moral fiber of their military, along with not only the price they pay as a society, but with their standing in the world community as well.
None of these essays are terribly long, and some are amazingly short. But they are sophisticated in that they manage to convey complicated accounts of history along with deep personal perspectives in a relatively short amount of space due to the exquisite writing. Almost all are haunting. Some are point-blank in your face accusations and I was caught off guard, but I witnessed more in these pages then any documentary video I've seen on the subject. If these pages don't strike some deep nerve within you then nothing will.
As you read, it will become apparent that these essays took much courage on the part of the writers, knowing full well that they might, at the very least, be labeled as `self hating Jews' and at the very worst, traitors by the hard right Zionist wing. The essays were written last year just falling short of the current roadmap process, but nonetheless will still give an incredible insight into what has been going on over there.
Often the writings depict the internal struggle within the authors themselves. On one hand there is a great need to be part of the greater Jewish solidarity, the wish for their country to live peaceably and prosper, while on the other as one essayist points out, the anguish that comes from "knowing all this, yet crying little, and keeping quiet too often."
The TRUE JEWS. People of God. Full of humaness, integrity,truth and a highly evolve soul.
These are writers that have an ease to put down on paper, what comes from their souls.
These are the people ALL us humans, MUST look up to.
As a Christian, these Israelite-Jews, through their actoions and writings, broguht tears to my eyes and a wrenching to my soul.
This is a MUST read for all in the globe.
Words, cannot describe the excellence in humanity of these writers.They have RENEWED my faith in that truly, there are still Jews, that are the CHOSEN ONES.
A book written with a NAKED TRUTH that few may be able to handle.
This book was written by True messengers of God.
From a Christian to the these Israelite-Jews writers: My reverence to you all !
God bless you !
The book ostensibly concerns the Jewish presence in disputed areas. Yet the authors speciously claim Israel never offered Arab sovereignty there. Actually, Israel (and before that, Zionist leaders) offered to recognize a sovereign 23rd Arab state at least 6 times through history--in 1937, 1948, 1967, 1977, 2000 and 2001, the last two under Arab fire. Each time, they were rejected.
Segev, Anthony Lewis, Jeff Halper, Amira Hass and other essayists make highly selective use of facts, incessantly invoke PA terminology and support Palestinian Authority "resistance," -- the PA euphemism that includes blowing women and children into tiny bits of flesh in cafes, pizza parlors and supermarkets. They don't acknowledge Israel's internationally established and recognized right to statehood. They don't acknowledge the most basic human right--to live free from fear or terrorism. They don't acknowledge the Arab wars and terrorism that have ceaselessly attempted to extinguish Israel's Jewish presence from the state's first moment.
Segev's forward discusses "the catastrophe that befell the 700,000 Arabs who emigrated, fled or were banished from their homes." He complains of Jewish "deception," while neglecting clear PA intentions to annihilate Israel, as stated in at least 36 clauses of the Palestine National Charter, which the PA has never revised or revoked (contrary to Segev's false contention). Segev is equally oblivious to the bellicose, Islamist PA Constitution and relentless official daily PA articles, sermons, editorials, cartoons, music videos and school lessons that intentionally cultivate hatred for Jews and Israel, to induce mass murder. Any Ha'aretz reporter should know, these genocidal documents and incitements violate the 1951 UN Genocide Convention, Oslo accords I and II, Hebron Protocol of January 15, 1997, 1965 International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights --- and give Israel unconditional rights of self-defense. But Segev doesn't.
Segev also ignores the rights of over 1 million Jews driven from their homes in Arab lands in coordinated, preplanned government attacks throughout the Middle East from 1920 through 1979, often at the cost of their lives. This oversight is critical, since Segev and company invoke U.N. resolution 194 as if it covered only Arab refugees.
But resolution 194 refers to "refugees," not "Arab refugees" --- indeed, it never mentions "Arab" or "Palestinian" at all --- and thus applies equally to Mizrahi Jews, and millions of their descendants, who currently comprise roughly half Israel's Jewish population. Jewish victims of Muslim religious apartheid spent 55 years building new lives in a Jewish state. This does not diminish their equal right to recompense for houses, business, livelihoods and assets illegally seized from them.
By ignoring Mizrahis, Segev and company falsely suggest that Israel was created by European Jewry, and conclude its sovereignty is therefore illegitimate. But Israel is as much a state of Middle Eastern Jews as others--and no more beholden to artificial moral constructs than any other democratic nation with democratically promulgated statutes.
The book unquestioningly accepts the supremacy of Arab claims over all other rights and claims. It examines Israel under a false moral magnifier, focusing exclusively on results, not the conflict's causes. Accuracy, however, would require acknowledgment of Arab league and states' monolithic rejection of resolution 194, which merely suggested a "right of return" --- only to those willing to "live at peace with their neighbors" --- and resettlement and compensation for the rest. Israel cannot legitimately be faulted for Arab refusals of normalcy, nor collective Arab refusals to resettle Arab refugees as Israel did Middle Eastern Jews.
Concerning terror attacks since 2000 "against densely populated Israeli targets," the essayists neglect PA establishment since 1993 of a popular suicide culture. They barely notice illegal PA arms buildup, repression or corruption, much less the spike in Arab terrorism after 1993, that violated Oslo I and II provisions to unconditionally halt all violence and incitement. Forget that until 2000, Israel handed over land and governmental responsibilities, despite increases in terrorism and Jewish civilian casualties. Forget, lest readers believe Palestinians bear responsibility for their misery, or that Arab villages were "locked down" only after a decade of PA refusal to combat anti-Israel violence. No, Segev accuses Israelis of reverting to "a tribal, isolated, emotional, and nationalistic mood."
New York Times columnist Anthony Lewis carries this untenable position further, unquestioningly accepting PA dogma that Jewish "settlements" are the sole source of disagreement, although they consume less than 4% of the territory disputed. This specious argument forgets 1948 to 1967, and hundreds of Israeli civilians murdered in 3,500-plus cross-border Palestinian and Syrian Arab terror attacks--launched from the Jordan River's "West Bank," Egyptian controlled Gaza, Lebanon and Syria. Israel then had no Jewish "settlements." It forgets thousands of Jordanian shells rained on Jerusalem in Tel Aviv in 1967, and former PA "Prime Minister" Abu Mazen's May 1974 order to murder 21 Ma'alot children and gravely injure 68 others (Jerusalem Post, Nov. 1, 1999).
And worst of all, it projects the most devastating form of anti-Arab racism: the Jewish people provide equal rights to Arab citizens of Israel, and are expected to do as a matter of course. Arab people in the disputed areas, on the other hand, may without repercussion abuse basic human rights --- and deny any rights at all to Jewish people living among them. Lewis evidently thinks Arabs so base that they are incapable of universally applying the same fundamental human rights at least nominally expected from every other people.
Jeff Halper disparages Israel's by-pass roads, forgetting they were built only to avail residents of terror-free highways, not to destroy a potential Arab state. To these writers, the illegal 1948 Jordanian and Egyptian occupations of now-disputed lands bear no mention. The result is a hermetically sealed vacuum, in which Arabs bear no responsibility.
This essentially racist viewpoint falsely absolves Arab leaders and states of all sins, including Arab ethnic cleansing of Jews from disputed areas in 1922, '29, '39 and '48, and 1948 removal of 100,000 Jews from East Jerusalem, two thirds of its population, to suddenly render a predominantly Jewish city "traditionally Arab." It also absolves Arab thefts of large disputed tracts that Jews had bought or rightfully owned under the 1858 Ottoman Land Law.
These Israeli essayists are "patriots" only by a myopic definition that whitewashes Arab wars and terrorism and blames Israel alone. To all others, this book's gross misrepresentations negate Israel's legitimacy, which seems to be the point.
---Alyssa A. Lappen