Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East

Few of us, Israeli or Palestinian, can be proud of what we have done during these past years, of what we have collaborated in, whether actively or in passive acceptance of the noise--the collaboration of turning away our eyes, of suspending our souls, of anesthetizing ourselves. - David Grossman.

I finished Michael Oren's examination of the Six Day War yesterday, finding time during our holiday to absorb this study in revanchist politics and its continuation by other means. The book is largely a diplomatic history, the first person accounts are sparse and back loaded.

Published in 2002 I will forgive its author, Israel's ambassador to the US, for his brusque characterization that Bush 43 in supporting Israel and castigating the Palestinians to police their own extremists, "succeeded" where LBJ failed; well, such claims couldn't anticipate the further conflicts in Lebanon or Gaza, but the rhetoric and Israel's policy also exclude (or exonerate)the preterit condition of the Palestinans, a condition supported directly or not by a host of Arab states as well.


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