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WE ARE NOT ONE

A HISTORY OF AMERICA’S FIGHT OVER ISRAEL

Illuminating history and a convincing case that Israel’s drift toward illiberalism has led to further divisiveness.

The long, complicated history of the U.S. government’s official “indulgence” of Israel, featuring dissenting voices left and right.

“America’s generosity to Israel is literally unparalleled, not only in U.S. history, but in the history of any nation,” writes Alterman, a contributor to the Nation and author of Lying in State: Why Presidents Lie—And Why Trump Is Worse, among other titles. Despite legendary recalcitrance by Israeli leaders regarding conceding to Palestinian or U.S. demands, Israel “has always been able to count on the unswerving support of the U.S. government.” Yet the author systematically reveals how that support is not “monochromatic.” The seemingly limitless emotional support for Israel galvanized after the Six-Day War has dwindled since, as Israeli politics moved rightward and instigated increasingly harsh treatment of Palestinians in occupied areas. “The image of the Israeli David fighting off the Arab Goliath—memorialized in the enormously popular 1958 book and 1960 movie Exodus—was more misleading than illuminating,” writes the author, “but it lived on as a tool for Israel’s supporters in the debates they faced.” Alterman explores the early internal struggles of the Zionist movement and founding of Israel and the leaders’ relationships with different American presidents. Since the 1960s, each has tried to fashion his own Middle East success story, culminating in Donald Trump’s ambitious, misguided attempts to curry favor with fellow right-wing leader Benjamin Netanyahu. The author employs rich contextual social and media history to reveal the lively intellectual discussions over the decades among the various factions, pro- or anti-Israel—e.g., the furor that burst forth when then–U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Patrick Moynihan denounced the “Zionism is Racism” resolution in the U.N. in 1975. In the final chapter, Alterman delves into the deep disaffection that now exists among American Jews, especially young people, regarding policy involving Israel and the U.S.

Illuminating history and a convincing case that Israel’s drift toward illiberalism has led to further divisiveness.

Pub Date: Nov. 22, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-465-09631-2

Page Count: 512

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: Sept. 26, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2022

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KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON

THE OSAGE MURDERS AND THE BIRTH OF THE FBI

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

Awards & Accolades

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    Best Books Of 2017


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  • National Book Award Finalist

Greed, depravity, and serial murder in 1920s Oklahoma.

During that time, enrolled members of the Osage Indian nation were among the wealthiest people per capita in the world. The rich oil fields beneath their reservation brought millions of dollars into the tribe annually, distributed to tribal members holding "headrights" that could not be bought or sold but only inherited. This vast wealth attracted the attention of unscrupulous whites who found ways to divert it to themselves by marrying Osage women or by having Osage declared legally incompetent so the whites could fleece them through the administration of their estates. For some, however, these deceptive tactics were not enough, and a plague of violent death—by shooting, poison, orchestrated automobile accident, and bombing—began to decimate the Osage in what they came to call the "Reign of Terror." Corrupt and incompetent law enforcement and judicial systems ensured that the perpetrators were never found or punished until the young J. Edgar Hoover saw cracking these cases as a means of burnishing the reputation of the newly professionalized FBI. Bestselling New Yorker staff writer Grann (The Devil and Sherlock Holmes: Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession, 2010, etc.) follows Special Agent Tom White and his assistants as they track the killers of one extended Osage family through a closed local culture of greed, bigotry, and lies in pursuit of protection for the survivors and justice for the dead. But he doesn't stop there; relying almost entirely on primary and unpublished sources, the author goes on to expose a web of conspiracy and corruption that extended far wider than even the FBI ever suspected. This page-turner surges forward with the pacing of a true-crime thriller, elevated by Grann's crisp and evocative prose and enhanced by dozens of period photographs.

Dogged original research and superb narrative skills come together in this gripping account of pitiless evil.

Pub Date: April 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-385-53424-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Feb. 1, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES

For Howard Zinn, long-time civil rights and anti-war activist, history and ideology have a lot in common. Since he thinks that everything is in someone's interest, the historian—Zinn posits—has to figure out whose interests he or she is defining/defending/reconstructing (hence one of his previous books, The Politics of History). Zinn has no doubts about where he stands in this "people's history": "it is a history disrespectful of governments and respectful of people's movements of resistance." So what we get here, instead of the usual survey of wars, presidents, and institutions, is a survey of the usual rebellions, strikes, and protest movements. Zinn starts out by depicting the arrival of Columbus in North America from the standpoint of the Indians (which amounts to their standpoint as constructed from the observations of the Europeans); and, after easily establishing the cultural disharmony that ensued, he goes on to the importation of slaves into the colonies. Add the laborers and indentured servants that followed, plus women and later immigrants, and you have Zinn's amorphous constituency. To hear Zinn tell it, all anyone did in America at any time was to oppress or be oppressed; and so he obscures as much as his hated mainstream historical foes do—only in Zinn's case there is that absurd presumption that virtually everything that came to pass was the work of ruling-class planning: this amounts to one great indictment for conspiracy. Despite surface similarities, this is not a social history, since we get no sense of the fabric of life. Instead of negating the one-sided histories he detests, Zinn has merely reversed the image; the distortion remains.

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1979

ISBN: 0061965588

Page Count: 772

Publisher: Harper & Row

Review Posted Online: May 26, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 1979

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