Item description for The Case Against Israel (Counterpunch) by Michael Neumann...
The Case Against Israelargues that Zionism was responsible for the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians and that Israel is responsible for its perpetuation. The argument rests on widely accepted factual claims and impeccable sources. It avoids rhetoric and gratuitous moralizing. There is no attempt to blacken Israel through association with colonialism, imperialism, or racism. Instead, Neumann’s argument emphasizes the fateful Zionist quest for Jewish sovereignty in Palestine. This quest—not the massacres or plans for transfer or other blots on Zionist history—made violence inevitable and compromise impossible. The prospect of Zionists gaining the power of life and death over all inhabitants of Palestine had to be seen by the Palestinians as a mortal threat. They responded accordingly.
The tragic consequences of the quest for sovereignty did not follow all at once, but in two stages. The Zionists established a sovereign Jewish state in 1948. Had they been content with that, peace might have followed the 1967 war, when Israel could have backed the creation of a Palestinian state in the occupied territories. Instead, Zionists pushed to extend Jewish sovereignty, this time through the settler movement. The settlements were a renewed mortal threat to the Palestinians and once again necessitated a violent response. The only solution is for Israel to withdraw, unilaterally, to its 1948 borders.
Michael Neumann was born in 1946, the son of German Jewish refugees. He graduated from Columbia University with degrees in European history and English literature, followed by a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Toronto. He teaches moral and political philosophy at a Canadian university. He has written What’s Left?, a critique of 1960s radicalism, and numerous articles relating to the Israel/Palestine conflict. His academic work includes The Rule of Law: Politicizing Ethics as well as articles on utilitarianism, rationality, and rights.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.75" Width: 5" Height: 7.25" Weight: 0.6 lbs.
Release Date Feb 1, 2005
Publisher AK Press
ISBN 1904859461 ISBN13 9781904859468
Reviews - What do customers think about The Case Against Israel (Counterpunch)?
careful, analytical, flawed Aug 19, 2008
I largely concur with many other reviews of this work. It is in the main well argued and presents a compelling case for Palestinian response to Zionism. There are numerous instances of one-sidedness of course, but that is just par for the course.
However. The chapter on terrorism starts of well with useful example to demonstrate issues of warfare, collateral damage, and terrorism. Then it weers of course. Arguments run out into nothing and conclusions come out of nowhere. All of a sudden Israel is called an illegitimate state, thereby not having a right to defend itself, but with no supporting arguments for this assertion. And previously having argued that everybody had a right to defend themselves( but questioning whether this extended to collective entities ).
Fortunately there are not too many of these (ideo-)logical flyballs, this is a short book after all, but they undermine an otherwise thoughtful work.
Another weakness in what purports to be a scholarly work, is the reliance on secondary sources. The footnotes are full of quotes and facts lifted from somewhere other than primary sources. No matter how authoritative the source in question may be, it is sloppy and drives in a wedge of doubt. Though you can plausibly argue that the source of a quote is irrelevant, the author picks the words and thereby makes them his own.
A worthwhile read.
Brilliant Analysis! Jul 24, 2008
Funny, if you look at the ratings for this fine book, the graph resembles a "W". Love it or hate it...
Clearly, this material strikes a bell with thoughtful readers. It also strikes a guilty nerve with the pro Zionist crowd.
I've visited Isreal numerous times - all on engineering business trips - no political agenda whatsoever. I really like the Isreali people - many of whom surprizingly apolitical and secular.
It seems that most educated Isrealis are very much ashamed of the Gaza concentration camps and ongoing cruelty and subjugation of the Palestinians. Most would like a fair handed approach to neighboring countries, and a lasting negotiated peace in the region.
This book provides an accurate and fairhanded look at the situation in Isreal today. Like Carter's recent book, it should be required reading for Americans.
It is ridiculous that any neutral analysis of the ongoing Isreali middle east mess be labeled "anti semetic" by jewish bigots with an axe to grind.
I challenge any American to visit Isreal and see things first hand. Tour Gaza. Witness the second class citizen status of Palestinians in Tel Aviv. Visit the various asinine US-funded "settlements". Learn the real truth about what is going on - something you will not find in the Jewish controlled US media.
This book is well researched and carefully written. I commend it to you.
David Ben-Gurion et al. knew it was wrong Apr 9, 2008
David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, sometimes called "Father of Israel," was intimately involved in the creation of Israel almost from the inception of Zionism. Such being the case, he knew better than anyone else the intricate and complex history of relations between the indigenous Palestinians and the mostly Ashkenazic Jewish imigrants who made Israel their home. Toward the end of his life he became pessimistic about the future of Israel and had this to say about the prospects for peace with the Arabs:
"Why should the Arabs make peace? If I was an Arab leader, I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them? Our God is not theirs. We come from Israel, it's true, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschweitz, but was that their fault? They see only one thing: we came here and stole their country. Why should they accept that?" (Quoted by Nahum Goldmann, former president of the World jewish Congress in his book "The Jewish Paradox")
Most of the hot air coming from pro-Zionist propagandists is an attempt to cover up, confuse, or complexify the original perpetration inherent in the formation of Israel; the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes and the theft of their homeland. Until this injustice is rectified or forgiven there will never be peace in the Middle East. And as long as Israel continues to confiscate and appropriate Palestinian land in the West Bank and Jerusalem and destroy Palestinian homes and crops with impunity (which it continues to do to this day) such rectification or forgiveness becomes ever more remote.
Relevant Information for the Actual Positive Future of Israel Nov 13, 2007
Most people might be turned away by the title, but the book is only in retort to Dershowitz's book, the Case For Israel. This book, also written by a man of Jewish descent, shows the hard to accept reasons that Israel's foreign and inter-ethnic policies do not benefit Israel. Point in case, or shall I say in the case against, Israel should get used to the idea that if they pull their troops out of the Occupied Territories they will furthermore have more troops to protect the actual Israel Proper borders. This would also allow Israel to reduce their military service to two years, not three years as it currently is, thereby gaining a larger possibility of new youthful Jewish immigrants. Their troops could have less land to protect and because of the odd nature of the borders of Israel proper, they would have more troops able to protect their borders per square mi/km. Occupational orneriness must end, it's not in the best interest for Israel and certainly not for the "stateless" Palestinians.
COMPELLING INDICTMENT OF ISRAEL'S POLICIES AGAINST PALESTINIANS Oct 6, 2007
Well documented analysis of Israel's apartheid and sadistic policies against entire Palestinian populations under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza.
This book by a principled and brave writer like Michael Neumann is another compelling and revealing indictment of the daily human rights abuses suffered by the Jewish state's palestinian victims (christians and moslems alike) on a daily basis and which regretfully are systematically ignored or underreported by the zionist or neocon controlled so called mainstream media.