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Travel Guide 2   >   Israel   >   History


Israeli History

Here are some books about the history of Israel:

Comments about Israeli History

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Books about Israeli History

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Israel: A Concise History of a Nation Reborn

By Daniel Gordis

Released: 2017-09-05
Paperback (560 pages)

Israel: A Concise History of a Nation Reborn
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Winner of the Jewish Book of the Year Award

The first comprehensive yet accessible history of the state of Israel from its inception to present day, from Daniel Gordis, "one of the most respected Israel analysts" (The Forward) living and writing in Jerusalem.

Israel is a tiny state, and yet it has captured the world’s attention, aroused its imagination, and lately, been the object of its opprobrium. Why does such a small country speak to so many global concerns? More pressingly: Why does Israel make the decisions it does? And what lies in its future?

We cannot answer these questions until we understand Israel’s people and the questions and conflicts, the hopes and desires, that have animated their conversations and actions. Though Israel’s history is rife with conflict, these conflicts do not fully communicate the spirit of Israel and its people: they give short shrift to the dream that gave birth to the state, and to the vision for the Jewish people that was at its core. Guiding us through the milestones of Israeli history, Gordis relays the drama of the Jewish people’s story and the creation of the state. Clear-eyed and erudite, he illustrates how Israel became a cultural, economic and military powerhouse—but also explains where Israel made grave mistakes and traces the long history of Israel’s deepening isolation.

With Israel, public intellectual Daniel Gordis offers us a brief but thorough account of the cultural, economic, and political history of this complex nation, from its beginnings to the present. Accessible, levelheaded, and rigorous, Israel sheds light on the Israel’s past so we can understand its future. The result is a vivid portrait of a people, and a nation, reborn.

The secret of Israel’s Power

By Uzi Eilam

Released: 2019-01-15
Kindle Edition (456 pages)

The secret of Israel’s Power
Product Description:

The successful track record of Israeli innovation policies, told from within.

This is the inside story on how Israel became a military technology powerhouse within less than two generations, told by Brigadier Uzi Eilam. The story blends the broad view of a person who led the creation of incredibly far-sighted R&D programs, with intimate portraits of the main players in a complex strategy that spans continents, corporations and armies.

Eilam’s story focuses on Israel’s decision to add technology to the military factor when creating attack and defense mechanisms, against its threats. Eilam also tells how Israel, with its persistence, courage and “chutzpa”, made a very successful journey and was able to create an internationally competitive space program.

More than any other account, this book explains how a very small country was able to make a concentrated use of its limited assets with astute leverage of international relationships while at the same time, create the backbone of Israeli civilian technology industries.

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

By Charles D. Smith

Bedford/St. Martin's
Paperback (624 pages)

Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A History with Documents
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Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict provides a comprehensive, balanced, and accessible narrative of a complex historical topic. The narrative is supported by more than 40 primary documents that highlight perspectives from all sides of the struggle. Throughout the book, the author examines how underlying issues, group motives, religious and cross-cultural clashes, diplomacy and imperialism, and the arrival of the modern era shaped this volatile region. Maps, photographs, chronologies, public opinion polls, and discussion questions help facilitate student understanding. A fully updated final chapter makes this the most current history of the topic.

Behind The Armor: The story of an Israeli soldier

By Itsik Ronen

Released: 2019-03-22
Kindle Edition (170 pages)

Behind The Armor: The story of an Israeli soldier
Product Description:

What is life like for a senior IDF officer? How does he really feel about his missions and what goes on behind the armor and the uniforms of the Israeli Defense Forces?

Colonel Itsik Ronen never planned to be a Tanker in the Armored Corps, but then he stepped into his first tank, saw the guys around him... and decided to embark on a challenging journey that will shape the rest of his life.

In his autobiographical memoir, Ronen offers a behind the scenes look at the modern Israeli Army. With his direct, no-bullshit narrative style, he takes his readers from grueling basic training, to wars and combat operations, through his last post as commander of the legendary Harel Brigade.

Along with him, the readers go through blood and fire, freezing winters and flying bullets. Through his eyes we experience the missiles of the Gulf War, two tumultuous wars in Lebanon and the endless war on terrorism. We are at his side through moments of fear, despair, perseverance and triumph.

A riveting insight into the life of a senior IDF officer in recent years.

“From his personal story, we learn that the strength of the Armored Corps stems from the soldier in the tank, and his personal experiences relate to that courageous soldier.”
Lt. Gen. (res.) Moshe Bogie Ya’alon

“The book is a reflection of the Armored Corps’ operational activity through the past generation… This is the story of a generation of combat fighters who evolved in the shadow of terrorist uprising and conflict.”

Maj. Gen. (res.) Yoav Galant

“Itsik Ronen’s book fills a significant void in a notable undertaking: to convey the dedication and heroism of a generation of IDF tankers enlisted through the years following the Yom Kippur War.”
Maj. Gen. (res.) Gershon Hacohen

The Israel-Palestine Conflict: Contested Histories

By Caplan

Brand: Wiley-Blackwell
Released: 2009-08-31
Paperback (332 pages)

The Israel-Palestine Conflict: Contested Histories
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The Israel-Palestine Conflict: Contested Histories provides non-specialist readers with an introduction and historical overview of the issues that have characterized and defined 130 years of the still unresolved Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
  • Provides a fresh attempt to break away from polemical approaches that have undermined academic discussion and political debates
  • Focuses on a series of core arguments that the author considers essentially unwinnable
  • Introduces readers to the major historiographical debates sparked by the dispute
  • Encourages readers to consider more useful ways of explaining and understanding the conflict, and to go beyond trying to prove who is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’

"This volume suggests a fresh and original interpretation to the history of the Arab Israeli conflict. Caplan juggles skillfully and even-handedly between the two narratives, reflecting the parties’ own views without embracing the cause of any party."
Joseph Nevo, University of Haifa

"An impressive and very valuable work. One could not ask for a better short history of the conflict. Caplan offers readers a study that is extremely well-informed, resolutely fair-minded, and filled with thoughtful insights."
Mark Tessler, University of Michigan

Myths and Facts: A Guide to the Arab-Israeli Conflict

By Mitchell G. Bard

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Paperback (400 pages)

Myths and Facts: A Guide to the Arab-Israeli Conflict
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In the last sixty years, Israel has faced seven different wars. During that time, the country has been under immense scrutiny and been the recipient of false accusations. This leaves the public with many questions: Does Israel want peace with the Arab nations? How do Islamic views affect Israel?

Using a number of sources, Mitchell G. Bard uncovers Israel’s true history. His book includes the following:

· A discussion of various wars involving Israel (including the war of 1948)

· Multiple maps that help the reader visualize the wars

· An analysis of terrorism directed at Israel

· An alphabetical index

· A discussion of the media’s role in how it portrays Israel

· A review of successful and unsuccessful peace efforts

· An overview of US-Israel relations

Bard also offers a synopsis of Israel’s roots, beginning with the great myth: that the Jews have no claim to their own land. Bard focuses on Israel’s relationships with neighboring countries, but he also includes suggested readings for those interested in further research. You’ll learn about the Jewish Virtual Library, an online source that’s constantly updated and offers reliable options for study.

Dive into this versatile read as Bard investigates common myths about Israel and reveals the truth.

The Mossad: The History and Legacy of Israel’s National Intelligence Agency

By Charles River Editors

Charles River Editors
Released: 2019-04-18
Kindle Edition (96 pages)

The Mossad: The History and Legacy of Israel’s National Intelligence Agency
Product Description:
*Includes pictures
*Includes online resources and a bibliography for further reading
*Includes a table of contents

The conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians is technically 69 years old and counting but has its roots in over 2,000 years of history. With so much time and history, the Middle East peace process has become laden with unique, politically sensitive concepts like the right of return, contiguous borders, secure borders, demilitarized zones, and security requirements, with players like the Quartet, Palestinian Authority, Fatah, Hamas, the Arab League and Israel. Over time, it has become exceedingly difficult for even sophisticated political pundits and followers to keep track of it all.

Thanks to the existential crises Israel faced in the first decades of its existence, it was virtually necessary to possess superior intelligence organizations, so it should come as no surprise that the Mossad is one of the most famed agencies in history. In Hebrew, Mossad means “the Institute,” but the name is short for Mossad Merkazi le-Modiin ule-Tafkidim Meyuhadim, which means, “Central Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations.” Comprised of 10 separate departments, the Mossad as it exists today was formed via a directive during the leadership of Prime Minister Ben Gurion, and it stated, "For our state which since its creation has been under siege by its enemies. Intelligence constitutes the first line of defense...we must learn well how to recognize what is going on around us."

Since then, the Mossad has been recognized by some as the greatest intelligence service in the world and one of the most ruthless and opaque by others. Since its inception in 1949, the Mossad has been credited with incredible rescues, violent assassinations, and the clever sabotage of enemy operations. Whether nefarious or essential, both critics and supporters of Mossad recognize that its estimated 1,200 employees have the unique ability to adapt to uncertain and hostile circumstances, accomplish large-scale objectives with limited resources, and persevere when seemingly hopelessly outnumbered.

The Mossad: The History and Legacy of Israel’s National Intelligence Agency looks at the agency’s organizational characteristics, historical inception, Cold War growth, and its recent influence. Along with pictures and a bibliography, you will learn about the agency like never before.


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