Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict
Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict is a non-fiction book by Norman G. Finkelstein, first published in 1995. It is a study of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Finkelstein examines and scrutinizes popular historical versions of the conflict by authors such as Joan Peters, Benny Morris, Anita Shapira and Abba Eban. The text draws upon Finkelstein's doctoral political science work. The 2003 revised edition offers an additional appendix devoted to criticism of Michael Oren's 2002 bestseller Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East.
Finkelstein, expanding upon his doctorate thesis, writes that the modern Zionist historical tradition is based on a series of ideologically-charged systematic biases, all of which face considerable problems when measured up with the actual record in his view. For example, he specifically refers to the Palestinian exodus before Israeli independence and the purported causes. Finkelstein credits Zionist military aggression upon Palestinian villages and calls for a transfer of populations as driving Palestinian refugees out of their lands, rather than a voluntary exodus occurring mixed in with orders to leave from Arabic leaders and other factors as Israeli historians have written.
Supportive reviews appeared in publications such as The Guardian and the London Review of Books. Critical reviews drawing problems with Finkelstein's historical work appeared in publications such as the Middle East Quarterly.
Reviews and reception
London Review of Books published a review stating that the book served as "both an impressive analysis of Zionist ideology and a searing but scholarly indictment of Israel's treatment of the Arabs since 1948."
Finkelstein, Norman G. (2003): Image and Reality of the Israel–Palestine Conflict, Verso Books, ISBN 1-85984-442-1
- Review by Edna Homa Hunt, in WRMEA, August/September 1996, Page 63
- Review by Ronald Bleier in Middle East Policy, Volume VII, Number 1 (October 1999).
- Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict at Finkelstein's official website.