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Alleged War Criminals

Michael Byers: Saddam, Milosevic and Sharon, 22 July 2004

... former prime ministers and presidents being prosecuted – and prosecuted properly at that. Take Ariel Sharon. There’s no shortage of allegations against the Israeli prime minister, starting with the 1953 massacre of 69 civilians in the Jordanian village of Qibya, the 1982 slaughter of a thousand Palestinians in the Lebanese refugee camps of Sabra and ...

The sea is the same sea

Adam Shatz: Bibi goes to Washington, 30 August 2018

Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu 
by Anshel Pfeffer.
Hurst, 423 pp., £20, May 2018, 978 1 84904 988 7
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... had their fascination, from the monastic self-discipline of David Ben-Gurion to the gluttony of Ariel Sharon. Netanyahu comes across as a hollow figure: a ‘marketing man’, in the words of Max Hastings, who met him while writing a biography of his brother Jonathan. Yet Netanyahu can hardly be avoided, or his survival skills denied. If he is not ...

A Pillar Built on Sand

John Mearsheimer, 8 November 2012

... under formal Israel control, thereby worsening the so-called ‘demographic threat’. Ariel Sharon withdrew Israeli settlers from Gaza in 2005 to reduce the number of Palestinians living under the Israeli flag; going back now would be a huge strategic reversal. The final, preferred option is aerial bombardment with ...

Israel’s Lies

Henry Siegman, 29 January 2009

... these indisputable facts by maintaining that in withdrawing Israeli settlements from Gaza in 2005, Ariel Sharon gave Hamas the chance to set out on the path to statehood, a chance it refused to take; instead, it transformed Gaza into a launching-pad for firing missiles at Israel’s civilian population. The charge is a lie twice over. First, for all its ...

Invisible Walls

Adam Shatz: Israel’s Revolutionary Left, 3 August 2006

On the Border 
by Michel Warschawski, translated by Levi Laub.
Pluto, 228 pp., £14.99, May 2005, 0 7453 2325 1
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... Amos Oz put it, improbably likening occupation to a bad marriage) was skilfully co-opted by Ariel Sharon, in the form of the Wall and the withdrawal from Gaza – with considerable support from the Zionist left. Warschawski, by contrast, has long insisted that separation can be only a short-term option, given the intricate interweaving of Arabs and ...

Grab more hills, expand the territory

Henry Siegman: The History of the Settlements, 10 April 2008

The Accidental Empire: Israel and the Birth of the Settlements, 1967-77 
by Gershom Gorenberg.
Holt, 454 pp., £16.99, March 2007, 978 0 8050 8241 8
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Lords of the Land: The War over Israel’s Settlements in the Occupied Territories, 1967-2007 
by Idith Zertal and Akiva Eldar.
Nation, 531 pp., $29.95, October 2007, 978 1 56858 370 9
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... investigated in 2005 by a commission headed by Talia Sasson, who was cynically appointed by Ariel Sharon to uncover the illegal activities that he himself had orchestrated. Sasson found that the settlements – illegal according to Israel’s own laws – were established with the secret support of virtually every government ministry, the IDF and ...

Ehud Barak

Avi Shlaim: Ehud Barak, 25 January 2001

... The outbreak of the al-Aqsa Intifada, following Ariel Sharon’s provocative visit to the holy Muslim shrine on 28 September last year, reopened the question of whether the Oslo Accord is capable of producing a viable settlement of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. Ever since it was signed on 13 September 1993 on the White House lawn and sealed with Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat’s hesitant handshake, the Accord has been a subject of controversy ...


Naomi Shepherd: Israel’s longing for normality, 3 February 2005

... right-wing arms ship, on Ben Gurion’s orders. For his (belatedly) uncompromising stand on Gaza, Ariel Sharon, until recently a hate figure for Israeli liberals, is now called a ‘Mapainik’ – a pragmatic and forceful leader in the Ben Gurion mould. But political life today is different from what it was under the old, socialist hegemony, when ...

You are terrorists, we are virtuous

Yitzhak Laor: The IDF, 17 August 2006

... with the withdrawal from Gaza, many Israelis who should be opposing this war started to think of Ariel Sharon, the genius of Sabra and Shatila, as a champion of peace. The logic of unilateralism – of which Sharon was the embodiment – had at last prevailed: Israelis are the only people who count in the Middle ...

A Road Map to Where?

Edward Said: The Future of the Middle East, 19 June 2003

... al-Assad, of course. All this is part of what now looks like a major American push forward. That Ariel Sharon has accepted the road map (although with enough reservations to undercut this acceptance) seems to augur well for a viable Palestinian state. Bush’s vision (the word strikes a weird dreamy note in what is meant to be a hard-headed, definitive ...

The Academy of Lagado

Edward Said: The US Administration’s misguided war, 17 April 2003

... As I said in an earlier article for the LRB (17 October 2002), such ideas were first tried out by Ariel Sharon in Lebanon during the 1982 invasion, and then more recently in Palestine, where, in terms of security, peace and subaltern compliance, there’s been nothing to show for it. Never mind: well-trained US special forces have practised and perfected ...

Israel mows the lawn

Mouin Rabbani, 31 July 2014

... before Israel’s unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip, Dov Weissglass, éminence grise to Ariel Sharon, explained the initiative’s purpose to an interviewer from Haaretz: The significance of the disengagement plan is the freezing of the peace process … And when you freeze that process, you prevent the establishment of a Palestinian ...

The Fighting Family

Avi Shlaim, 9 May 1996

Israel, Likud and the Zionist Dream: Power, Politics and Ideology from Begin to Netanyahu 
by Colin Shindler.
Tauris, 324 pp., £25, August 1995, 1 85043 969 9
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Summing Up: An Autobiography 
by Yitzhak Shamir.
Weidenfeld, 276 pp., £19.99, April 1994, 0 297 81337 4
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Broken Covenant: American Foreign Policy and the Crisis between the US and Israel 
by Moshe Arens.
Simon and Schuster, 320 pp., $25, February 1995, 0 671 86964 7
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A Zionist Stand 
by Ze’ev Begin.
Cass, 173 pp., £15, January 1993, 0 7146 4089 1
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Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorism 
by Benjamin Netanyahu.
Farrar, Straus, 152 pp., $17, October 1995, 0 374 15492 9
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... of Egypt’s disengagement from the conflict, Begin, aided and abetted by his Defence Minister Ariel Sharon, launched Israel on the road to war in Lebanon. Shindler devotes four chapters to the Lebanon war, but the real logic behind it eludes him. The war was about securing the Land of Israel and it was directed primarily against the Palestinians, not ...

‘We’ know who ‘we’ are

Edward Said: Palestine, Iraq and ‘Us’, 17 October 2002

... the Israeli Army breached the country’s southern border. Menachem Begin was then Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon Minister of Defence. The immediate reason for the invasion was the attempted assassination of the Israeli Ambassador to Britain, blamed by Begin and Sharon on the PLO, whose forces in South Lebanon had been ...

Covid-19 in the Time of Netanyahu

Yonatan Mendel: Bibi has done it again, 7 May 2020

... and choosing to have little access to television, radio and the internet.As finance minister under Ariel Sharon (2003-5) and as prime minister (2009-20, or, if the latest polls are to be believed, until the end of time), Netanyahu has pursued the cause of privatisation and neoliberal economics while neglecting basic services and investment in public ...

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