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Palestine 1948 War, Escape and the Emergence of the Palestinian Refugee Problem by Yoav Gelber

Palestine 1948 War, Escape and the Emergence of the Palestinian Refugee Problem


Palestine 1948 War, Escape and the Emergence of the Palestinian Refugee Problem by Yoav Gelber

Since the 1970s, the Latin Based on new or newly interpreted Israeli, British and Arab documents, this book attempts to integrate present controversies concerning the development of the Jewish-Palestinian war from December 1947 to mid-May 1948 and the consecutive Israeli-Arab war. It follows the organization of both sides at the beginning of the war and the shaping of their respective war policies. Further, it describes the creation of the invading coalition and its disintegration in the wake of the Arab armies' military failure. The book stresses mainly the processes that led Palestinian society to its collapse and mass flight and the Israeli reactions and policies that turned this temporary escape into a long-lasting refugee problem. Emphasizing the different historical and cultural perspectives of the adversaries and the context of the war's development, it criticises the approach of the Israeli 'New Historians' who tend to isolate the refugee problem from the broader issues of the war and treat it separately. Includes a glossary of Arab/Israeli wartime operations.


Recommended for its contribution to a continuing debate over a controversial issue... -- Choice. There have been flashier histories of Israel's war of independence, and longer ones, but none as well informed, more sensible and more compelling than Gelber's magisterial account... -- Middle East Quarterly Yoav Gelber's contribution to the literature on 1948 is useful for its detailed chronology of Israel's most significant and triumphal campaign against the Arabs... The book's value lies in its shedding light on the loose alliances unfolding in the Middle East. -- Studies in Contemporary Jewry, Oxford University Press.

About the Author

Yoav Gelber is Professor of History at the University of Haifa and Head of the Herzl Institute for Research and Study of Zionism. He is the author of a number of books on Middle East affairs, including: Israeli-Jordanian Dialogue: Cooperation, Conspiracy, or Collusion? (Sussex Academic, 2004); and Jewish-Transjordanian Relations, 1921-1948 (Frank Cass, 1997).

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Book Info

Publication date

1st January 2006


Yoav Gelber

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Sussex Academic Press


436 pages


Warfare & defence



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