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Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A History with Documents

Product Description
Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict provides a comprehensive, balanced, and accessible introduction to the multi-faceted history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Smith’s widely respected analysis examines how underlying issues, group motives, religious and cross-cultural clashes, diplomacy and imperialism, and encroaching modernity shaped this volatile region. The book’s narrative and supporting documents, maps, photographs, and chronologies consider high and l… More >>

Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A History with Documents


  1. There is good information here, unfortunately it only presents one side of the story. Israel is also guilty of a lot of problems that do not even get a mention here. There are two sides to every story, and this biased book does not accomplish covering both.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  2. I suppose some people think that one can write anything in a book and call it “history.” But I think Smith’s portrayal of the conflict is just too misleading to be called history. Real people in real life do real things for real reasons. But after reading this book, I had an image of wicked unarmed Zionists maliciously stealing land from hapless heavily armed Arabs. It wasn’t exactly what Smith had said. But it was close enough to make me realize what was wrong with the book. The constant whitewashing of Arab misdeeds and criticism of reasonable Jewish behavior had simply erased the motivations for the two sides in the conflict.

    Are there books that do a better job? Oh yes. I’ll give you ten examples of books that are far better, and there are many, many more:

    The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Middle East Conflict (Bard, 2003)

    A History of Israel (Sachar, 1996)

    The Siege (O’Brien, 1986)

    A Young Person’s History of Israel (Bamberger, 1985)

    The Rape of Palestine and the Struggle for Jerusalem (Casper, 2003)

    Atlas of the Middle East Conflict (Gilbert, 2002)

    Islam and Dhimmitude (Ye’or, 2002)

    Right to Exist (Lozowick, 2003)

    A Place Among Nations (Netanyahu, 1993)

    From Time Immemorial (Peters, 1984)

    Try one of them.

    Rating: 1 / 5

  3. I bought this book with some other on the subject. I found it to be a total misrepresentation of facts. It is removed from being balanced and I found more then ones that it is not giving the right picture.
    It is what it says – A history. It gives the Arab propoganda a tool to use.
    As a reader you would be better informed with :
    1. From Time Immemorial / Joan Peters
    2. A complete Idiots guide to the Conflict on the Middle East/
    Mitchell Bard
    3. Myth&Fact/ Mitchell Bard
    4. Israel- The Historical Atlas.
    All this books I bought from Amazon with this one.
    As a reader I was more impresses with them and the information within them.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  4. Like some other reviewers, I too bought this book for a college course and I too find it overly biased toward the Arab point of view. The author has the right to draw his own conclusions, but like any non-fiction book, readers must use their own judgement to evaluate those conclusions carefully. I don’t know if there is an author without bias on this topic due to its sensitivity.

    It is also horribly dry in my opinion. I know it’s supposed to be, but certain sections just drag on and on, it seems, uneccessarily.

    Read critically, not literally. If you have a choice (i.e. don’t have to buy this particular book for a course or something) choose a more balanced author, if you can find one.
    Rating: 2 / 5

  5. Smith’s book is well documented and well written. However, it falls down as it continually condemns Zionist and later Israeli actions with little mention of Arab activities. A major case in point is the frequent use of the term “Palestinian rage” in reaction to Israeli incursions in and occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. Nothing is mentioned about any “Israeli rage” after such actions as the murder of the olympic athletes in Munich in 1972. Arab rage is apparently fomented every time Israel beats them in a war (perhaps they should stop trying to fight Israel?), but the result of an Israeli loss would be the total destruction of the nation (as well as a likely repeat holocaust for the jews there). Smith does not acknowledge this state of affairs.
    Unfortunately, I have not found a truly balanced book on this subject. Always one side decrying the other. If you know of one, please post…
    Rating: 2 / 5


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