My Promised Land

My Promised Land

The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel

Book - 2013
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An authoritative and deeply personal narrative history of the State of Israel, by one of the most influential journalists writing about the Middle East today.
Publisher: New York : Spiegel & Grau, [2013]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2013
ISBN: 9780385521703
Branch Call Number: 956.054 SHA

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r
RichardGMaloney
Feb 28, 2016

This was a "fair-minded" but somewhat pointless writing exercise on the author's part. He did not mention much about the hugely unethical 'wall' (as if the building and dividing scale of it was not worth mentioning, let alone coming to terms with as an Israeli citizen), as well as completely ignoring any meaningful discussion regarding the massive U.S. aid Israel receives each year (billions of U.S. dollars and more than any other country the U.S. taxpayer gives to; as if that aid will keep flowing forever, without more and more strings attached). All in all, worth a read, but, I did not learn as much as I thought I would. The author leaves the reader wondering if he really sincerely cares about making peace with Palestinians, which Israelis must learn to do, sooner than later.

s
SeattleSaul
Aug 03, 2015

The author, a native Israeli, gives the best summary of the book on page 387: “My Promised Land is not an academic work of history. Rather, it is a personal journey through contemporary and historic Israel…” However, it is in historic sequence and allows the reader to assemble the events that created modern Israel—and has nearly led to its destruction. All together it gives both sides to the creation-destruction drama and offers some hope for the future.
Was Israel established for the race of Hebrews, some of whom practice the ancient religion of Judaism? Is it an apology from the world for the holocaust? Was it simply the robbery by one group from another? Who fired the first shot, giving the other side the right to retaliate? The author, an Israeli, tries to help the reader work through the emotions these questions evoke.
Read this book to gain an understanding of the difficulties, contradiction and feelings that shaped this sliver of desert land.

k
kianting
Feb 09, 2015

This is a good book to understand the Israel and Palestinian conflict. It tells the story of how Israel begin, how it changed through the decades and the diaspera of views on how the country should be runned. It also talks about the narcissistic younger generations that have taken life for granted and have forgotten the sacrifices of their forefathers. Although the context of and the story revolves around Israel, we can always relate the same societal issues that is happening in everyother country.

j
johncruse
Nov 24, 2014

If you agree with Haaretz you should like this book. It is not balanced. It is often inaccurate. The author is delusional and anti Israel.

n
Nblpearl
Sep 20, 2014

This should be required reading for anyone interested in the history of the Middle East. Wonderfully written, thought-provoking, and practically guaranteed to get conversations, if not heated discussions, going.

s
SpyderGT
Sep 04, 2014

Enlightening and balanced historical and current perspective.

m
Mariposasoy56
Aug 19, 2014

I like the way he presents the information from his own observations giving historical account but not in a dry manner. It's a very easy read and brings an interesting view through his observations of the current Middle East conflict. I learned many things I did not know and appreciate his displaying both sides of the issues.

Jane60201 Jul 25, 2014

What a useful back story to current events in the Middle East! I learned a lot about Israel that I had not known.

b
broberts13
Jul 16, 2014

Through letters and interviews, Shavit presents the views of all parties involved from 19th century Zionist settlers through present-day residents, both Arab and Jew.

The book describes the many success of the Jewish people, explaining why Jewish Israelis have the highest invention rate per capita than any other group and goes on to explain the current threats to the survival of Israel and worldwide Judiasm.

d
delfon
Jul 09, 2014

A fairly comphrehensive, easy to read overview of Israel using stories of many of the dedicated creators of Israel. A motivational story in which one can only be in awe.How a small group of Europeans (East and West), turned a barren wasteland into a paradise on earth, (while unfortunately, seeing but not seeing a serpent sitting in plain view).
So to, there are ominous and striking similarities with Canada.
Elites come, ignore residents, build, take land, build, make laws, build, trade, war, and suddenly; a country is born.
Meanwhile back at the forest, slum, fishing village, farmhouse. People do not get the benefits new people get; free housing, medical care, employment provisions, supervision to success.
Surprise, enthrallment and pride that seems universal, can be/and is, subverted, by; elitism, nasty attitudes, undemocratic discriminatory behaviors, and so on.
Suddenly, Israel has 7 internal revolutions; Canada too has much the same:
A foreign elite, discriminatory employment, housing restricted to new comers of any and all varities, but not necessarily resident born, and voila, we have Canada.
Not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.
Now, Israel has 50% of its population not contributing taxes. War, Terrorism by a slighted majority, a right wing thinking process, intransigent and not used to power sharing -- and the strongest, most powerful armed force in the area. How can 2.5 million people have the skill set to build an atomic weapon? But, they do.
This is a fascinating read, and one can suddenly understand why Canadians feel for the Palestinians, maybe its because, they are almost, or we are soon to be, them. One can understand why a rigid, closed government, prone to thinking of itself first and ignoring the commons. can be so dedicated to another government of similar character.

Here's another review:.
https://lareviewofbooks.org/review/tragedy-political-correctness-ari-shavit-confusion-zionist-liberal-left>.
Well, now its on to reading the same book.

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