Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict

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Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict is a 1995 book about the Israeli–Palestinian conflict by Norman G. Finkelstein. Finkelstein examines and scrutinizes popular historical versions of the conflict by authors such as Joan Peters, Benny Morris, Anita Shapira and Abba Eban. The text draws upon Finkelstein's doctoral political science work. The 2003 revised edition offers an additional appendix devoted to criticism of Michael Oren's 2002 bestseller Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East. Finkelstein, expanding upon his doctorate thesis, writes that the modern Zionist historical tradition is based on a series of ideologically-charged systematic biases, all of which face considerable problems when measured up with the actual record in his view. For example, he specifically refers to the Palestinian exodus before Israeli independence and the purported causes. Finkelstein credits Zionist military aggression upon Palestinian villages and calls for a transfer of populations as driving Palestinian refugees out of their lands, rather than a voluntary exodus occurring mixed in with orders to leave from Arabic leaders and other factors as Israeli historians have written. He goes into detail on issues such as Israel's exploitation of water rights.His book received praise from authors critical of Israel, including Noam Chomsky and William B. Quandt. Supportive reviews appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, The Guardian and the London Review of Books. Critical reviews drawing problems with Finkelstein's historical work appeared in publications such as the Middle East Quarterly.
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original title: Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict
date of publication: 1995
main subject: Israeli–Palestinian conflict

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