Later: Considering the title, I took this book to be a memoir, not a history or official anything. I took it to be thoroughly biased to Shavit’s point of view and agenda. This is part of why I originally gave it a rating of 9.5 and still might go back to that.
** I have edited the rating because I see where there is much controversy about this book. It was written for an American audience and many Israelis apparently take issue with the thrust. Because I am an American (and not even Jewish) I do not know that much about the subject. I rated it high because I felt like I learned a lot about the current situation and how it arose. I saw that it was obviously an Israeli point of view (only) as opposed to Arab or even balanced. But it may be that Shavit has also only used sources which support his ideas. And therein lies the issue – what is his idea? What is his reason for writing it – to convince the US to continue supporting Israel? I sense that it might be very pro-Zionist to the point of fatalism – “We may have made mistakes but we’re here now, so what? We need support or the big bad Arabs will get us.”
My first impression was a serious dislike to the pro-Zionist attitude, but I thought that changed. Apparently it didn’t quite. ??? More later – after a group discussion at: the Yahoo All-nonfiction Group I’ve added a link to an alternative view at the end of the main review.
With My Promised Land Shavit has set himself the elusive, complex and extraordinarily difficult goal of answering some rather existential questions about Israel, a seriously threatened country which is, at the same time, occupying another people and their land. Shabit is looking for answers to such questions as “Why is Israel? What is Israel? Will Israel?” within the context of its history as filtered by his own personal life and journalistic experience. >>>>MORE>>>>