Cre­ation of the Mod­ern Mid­dle East: Israel

Louise Chip­ley Slav­icek; Arthur Gold­schmidt Jr., ed.
  • Review
By – January 9, 2012
This book is a com­pre­hen­sive his­to­ry of the State of Israel from the begin­nings of the Zion­ist move­ment to 2008. The infor­ma­tion giv­en is both detailed and accu­rate and attempts to be objec­tive, how­ev­er the per­spec­tive is def­i­nite­ly pro-Israel. For exam­ple, in telling the events sur­round­ing the killing of civil­ians at Deir Yassin dur­ing the War of Inde­pen­dence, the author writes, Rumors of Arab vil­lagers har­bor­ing snipers had sparked an attack…the Haganah and the Jew­ish Agency imme­di­ate­ly con­demned the killings…There is no evi­dence that the Irgun- Lehi troops delib­er­ate­ly engi­neered the Arabs’ pan­icky flight.” With so many media sources and col­lege cam­pus­es pub­li­ciz­ing an anti- Israel slant, a book for young read­ers that clear­ly explains the Israeli per­spec­tive is wel­come. On the oth­er hand, the book does lack a full rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Pales­tin­ian point of view. Mod­ern col­or pho­tographs and his­tor­i­cal black and white pho­tos enrich the text. The sub­ject mat­ter is quite com­pli­cat­ed and the vocab­u­lary sophis­ti­cat­ed, mak­ing this book appro­pri­ate for ages 12 and older.
Hillary Zana has a BA and teach­ing cre­den­tial from Prince­ton Uni­ver­si­ty. She was a day school librar­i­an for many years and has writ­ten many Hebrew text­books avail­able through Behrman House Pub­lish­ers. She cur­rent­ly teach­es Eng­lish and his­to­ry in the Los Ange­les pub­lic school sys­tem and is a Nation­al Cer­ti­fied teacher.

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