The Accidental Empire: Israel and the Birth of the Settlements, 1967-1977

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Macmillan, Mar 7, 2006 - History - 454 pages
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The untold story, based on groundbreaking original research, of the actions and inactions that created the Israeli settlements in the occupied territories
After Israeli troops defeated the armies of Egypt, Syria, and Jordan in June 1967, the Jewish state seemed to have reached the pinnacle of success. But far from being a happy ending, the Six-Day War proved to be the opening act of a complex political drama, in which the central issue became: Should Jews build settlements in the territories taken in that war?
The Accidental Empire is Gershom Gorenberg's masterful and gripping account of the strange birth of the settler movement, which was the child of both Labor Party socialism and religious extremism. It is a dramatic story featuring the giants of Israeli history--Moshe Dayan, Golda Meir, Levi Eshkol, Yigal Allon--as well as more contemporary figures like Ariel Sharon, Yitzhak Rabin, and Shimon Peres. Gorenberg also shows how the Johnson, Nixon, and Ford administrations turned a blind eye to what was happening in the territories, and reveals their strategic reasons for doing so.
Drawing on newly opened archives and extensive interviews, Gorenberg reconstructs what the top officials knew and when they knew it, while weaving in the dramatic first-person accounts of the settlers themselves. Fast-moving and penetrating, The Accidental Empire casts the entire enterprise in a new and controversial light, calling into question much of what we think we know about this issue that continues to haunt the Middle East.

 

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Contents

NORTH FROM JERUSALEM
1
THE AVALANCHE
7
CREATING FACTS
42
SILENT COWBOYS ON THE NEW FRONTIER
72
SETTLING IN
99
THE INVISIBLE OCCUPATION
129
CHANGING OF THE GUARD
163
THE REIGN OF HUBRIS
187
MERE ANARCHY Is LOOSED
250
CONFRONTATION
280
LAST TRAIN TO SEBASTIA
308
THE FALL OF THE HOUSE OF LABOR
342
EPHEMERAL FOR THE FOURTH DECADE
363
Notes
377
Bibl1ography
437
Copyright

ALL QUIET ON THE SUEZ FRONT
220

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About the author (2006)

Gershom Gorenberg is a columnist and associate editor at The Jerusalem Report. He is the author of The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount and co-author of Shalom, Friend: The Life and Legacy of Yitzhak Rabin. He has written for The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, The New Republic, The American Prospect, Mother Jones, Ha'aretz, and Ma'ariv. Born in America and educated at the University of California and Hebrew University, Gorenberg lives in Jerusalem with his wife and three children.

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