Lt. Gen. Burns served as Chief of Staff of UNTSO while the Armistice regime was disintegrating -- August 1954 to November 1956. That these years embraced many of the inflammatory incidents that threatened the precarious peace in the Middle East makes this an important reference book. He has recorded what happened, his interpretation of what led up to successive steps, his relatively objective critical approach to the intransigence of both the Arab and Israeli sides (by Arab meaning primarily Egyptian, though Jordanian, Syrian and Lebanese viewpoints are given their due). Nobody can emerge from his experience completely dispassionate and unbiased and General Burns is no exception; his bias as a Canadian is- not surprisingly- on the side of the Arab, but he can be sharply critical of Nasser and his operations. The refugee question remains the burning issue; neither side gives an inch. When the brief flareup of ""defensive war"" put Israel and France and England in the wrong with the UN, he was appointed Commander of the Emergency Force... The facts are here; for reference this is important. There is no spark of inspiration in the reporting --only the need to see both sides fairly presented and the need to know more of the facts would make this a book one the average reader concerned in the Middle East should read. Its controversial aspects may make it more widely read than otherwise might be the case.