"Prodigiously documented... Alison Weir must be highly commended for throwing such a brilliantly hard light on the relationship between the United States and Israel. I hope this marvelous book gets all the attention it deserves." - Ambassador Andrew Killgore Soon after WWII, US statesman Dean Acheson warned that creating Israel on land already inhabited by Palestinians would "imperil" both American and all Western interests in the region. Despite warnings such as this one, President Truman supported establishing a Jewish state on land primarily inhabited by Muslims and Christians. Few Americans today are aware that US support enabled the creation of modern Israel. Even fewer know that US politicians pushed this policy over the forceful objections of top diplomatic and military experts. As this work demonstrates, these politicians were bombarded by a massive pro-Israel lobbying effort that ranged from well-funded and very public Zionist organizations to an "elitist secret society" whose members included Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis. AGAINST OUR BETTER JUDGMENT brings together meticulously sourced evidence to illuminate a reality that differs starkly from the prevailing narrative. It provides a clear view of the history that is key to understanding one of the most critically important political issues of our day.
This is an incredibly fast read but it is packed with information and one would do well to probably read it twice. The endnotes are thorough and are larger than the text of the book itself! She exposes Zionism, its key leaders, its movers and shakers, in this absolutely essential reading expose. Touches on its links to the Nazis, and how it even worked against non-Zionist Jews all for the glory of creating its dream of a Zionist, ethnically pure Jewish State. Before anybody starts to cry anti-Semite, which it isn't even close, just read it. Find out how the Western world and particularly the US was tricked and pressured to support Zionist goals. Read all the notes and source information she provides and be prepared to be amazed at what was and still is hidden from the general public. She is now working on a second book which details the history from where this ends until current times. I am eagerly awaiting its publication!
Alison Weir's Against Our Better Judgment tells "the hidden history of how the U.S. was used to create Israel." Weir's copious primary source citations and notes take up more pages than the narrative itself.
Weir's narrative begins in 1897, when Theodor Herzl organized the First Zionist Congress. Out of several possible choices for a Jewish homeland, the congress selected Palestine. They knew the land was already inhabited by native Palestinians but decided to purchase the land from them. And if the Palestinians didn't want to sell, the Zionists intended to force them off their lands.
Beginning in the early 1900s, American Zionists in high government positions began influencing federal government policies. Future Supreme Court Justice Luis Brandeis is an example in point. He, along with other high-level officials, secretly encouraged President Woodrow Wilson to support making Palestine the new homeland for the Jews. British Zionists worked with American Zionists to influenced major policies in the U.S. and Great Britain. For example, American and British Zionists were involved in writing Great Britain's Balfour Declaration. And in the Paris Peace Conference after World War I, they made it clear that they wanted Palestine exclusively as a Jewish homeland and intended to push out its current inhabitants to make it so.
Weir explains how American Zionists successfully worked the media so only pro-Zionist segments were aired on radio and television and pro-Zionist articles appeared in the newspapers. Zionist lobbying groups became extremely powerful across the country, influencing not just the federal government but city and town governments too. They were so powerful, in fact, that they defeated high-level government officials' attempts to prevent the partition of Palestine, including those of President Harry Truman's Secretary of State George Marshall, Secretary of Defense James Forrestal, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Zionist lobbyists also pressured the United Nations General Assembly members to vote for the partition.
After World War II, members of the Haganah infiltrated displaced persons camps and smuggled Jewish refugees into Israel. Many refugees didn't want to go there, preferring the U.S. and other countries instead, but were taken by force. And the Zionists weren't adverse to using violence to remove refugees, either.
This chapter struck home to me. When I was teaching, I was friendly with a guidance counselor who had worked in a displaced persons camp after the war. He told me that later he bumped into a man he'd worked with there. The man confessed that he had belonged to the secret Haganah group that was smuggling refugees from the camp into Israel. "You didn't know it," the man told him, "but you got in our way quite few times. So many, in fact, that one night we had a meeting to decide if we should kill you. In the end, we chose not to. And you know, I'm glad we didn't kill you because you're a really nice guy."
Weir also exposes some popular myths, including the one that in the "War of Independence" the Israelis were the underdogs. And he explains how the Zionists deliberately used the ship Exodus as a public relations device to gain sympathy for its refugee passengers. To further their goal, they even rejected an offer from the French government to host the refugees.
All in all, Against Our Better Judgment is a well-documented, informative read about a topic that seems to have no middle ground. But to obtain an informed, balanced view, I think you need to read both sides of the controversy.
As a Muslim, reading this book seemed liked all the conspiracy theories about Zionism becoming real. The book is a very short, actually it's not a book but a longish article with endnotes longer than the book itself. I guess the author needed to provide ample evidence to all the controversial statements made against Zoinists. The affect of pro Israel propaganda is very strong but unfortunately blowback is proved to be just as strong. The future peace in the World depends on addressing our history in an objective manner. This book is a vital read for anyone looking to understand the current state of chaos in the Middle East.
Alison Weir presents a well-researched and well-written history of the creation of Israel. It is not possible to understand the tensions today without understanding how it became that way. It should be noted that before 1967 many American Jews were against the formation of a state only for Jews since they thought it would lead to more hatred and persecution, especially when the proposed country would be created by displacing the Palestinians. This is a book every student of Middle East history should read since it contains so much new information.
A good reporter assembles the facts and then relates those facts to the public in an understandable way. Alison Weir was a newspaper reporter who became curious about the special situation of Israel and decided to investigate, to our benefit. She has been active in bringing out facts on her website, If Americans Knew, for over ten years ago. I have listened to her speak in person and afterward went up and gave her a hug of support. I have never read any of her work that doesn't stand up to scrutiny.
She is doing what mainstream American journalism is and always has been afraid to do - challenge the power of the Israel lobby with all of its wealthy and influential American supporters. Of course this means that she has been hit with all the dirt that can be thrown at her, chiefly the charge that she is anti-semitic, a standard accusation from the lobby that has all of Congress in thrall.
This is a very short book. The first half follows the course of Zionism within American history, highlighting the influence of Zionists in America and revealing the activities behind the scenes of such well know Americans as Felix Frankfurter and Louis Brandeis, both of who served on the Supreme Court dealing out justice even as they were promoting injustice in Palestine.
The title of the book comes from the fact that many Americans in government were against United States support for the theft of their land from the Palestinians in order to create space for Jews only. A land that had in 1900 a population 5% Jewish, was, through the indefatigable efforts of Zionists in Europe and the United States to get Jews to immigrate there, brought to a point where Jews made up a substantial minority in Palestine.
Then what population alone could not achieve was gained by armed force in the warfare of 1947-8 combined with arm twisting in the United Nations to give an immigrant minority 55% of the land of another people, exclusively. This arm twisting was enabled by U.S. President Truman capitulating to the power of the Jewish vote in American politics along with the lack of knowledge by Americans of what was going on in Palestine.
This lack of knowledge was primarily due to a propaganda effort (e.g. "a land without a people for a people without a land") financed by wealthy Zionists combined with the threat of a charge of anti-semitism if the truth were reported about events on the ground in Palestine. Weir documents the destruction of the journalistic career of Dorothy Parker who had been syndicated in many newspapers of the time due to Parker's truthful reporting on what was happening to the Palestinians.
The last half of the book is documentation for the reporting done in the first half. Weir is nothing if not thorough.
Though Against Our Better Judgement is a necessary read for anyone who wants to know how America was involved in the creation of Israel, it gives only a glimpse of the entire story of how a land was stolen by Europeans from the natives. For a full account of the disaster, read The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Israeli professor Ilan Pappe. For a detailed account of how Zionists pressured holocaust survivors to go to Palestine against their wishes, read Yosef Grodzinsky's In the Shadow of the Holocaust and to get to the root of the conditions that made the creation of Israel possible, read David Fromkin's A Peace to End All Peace.
Good historical piece - well written, fast moving - not good for someone totally brainwashed by the Zionist theory of life! Unfortunately, that includes a majority of Americans and worse, the whole of congress!
A Must-Read for EVERY American. This is a fast-paced, chronological narrative documenting how the United States was conned into (forced into) being a champion for the partitioning of Palestine by numerous zionists and zionist groups, despite the reservations of the Foreign Service and Pentagon.
The book is extremely well-researched and documented. In fact over one half of the book consists of end-notes with references. And that is what makes it all the more shocking and disturbing: that these events actually took place.
Do yourself a favor and read this short book. You can get it on Kindle from Amazon for about $6. This is a part of the US history you MUST know.
This book is literally an eye opener, a book full of "Aha!" moments. As a 23 years old Lebanese citizen, having studied in my country's schools and in its history books, I feel shame as in why the creation of Israel is not clearly highlighted in education, leaving a gap and lots of questions that only this book could so objectively fulfill. This book answers not only "what happened?" but more importantly "how all of this happened?" and is very highly recommended for everyone especially people living in the middle east. Reading this book will help us a lot to understand why we are where we are today, how the creation of Israel was prepared and how education and media can be used to poison the minds of millions, something still happening to this day.
Every American should read this. It is superb, concise and extremely well written, researched and documented. Rewrites the history we were all taught about how and why the State of Israel came into being. And sheds light on truth behind US / Israeli relations and support.
Alison Weir pulls back the curtain on Zionism to expose its lurid story. Her book, so carefully annotated, reveals a story that very few know and the State of Israel hopes will never be known. All along the way, whenever American journalists or theologians spoke out on behalf of the Palestinians and questions what was happening in Palestine, a massive smear campaign began, labeling them as Anti-Semitic. Lives, careers, were ruined by Zionist efforts to squash criticism of its violent rampage in Palestine. Violence often turned against Jews themselves in Iraq and Poland who resisted moving to Palestine.
This is not a pretty picture, but if anyone cares about the Middle East and why America seems so entangled in Israel's fate, here's the story. Strange, to think, that this little nation could literally have a strangle hold on American politics and financial streams. Beginning with Wilson and WW1, Zionists persuaded Britain to issue what came to be called the Balfour Declaration with a promise that American Jews would persuade Wilson to enter the war, thus saving Britain from, not a surrender, but a negotiated peace with Germany.
Had Britain negotiated peace, Palestine would have been lost; Zionism rejected other locations of safety all the way up and through WW2, looking only to Palestine, and in order to gain Palestine, it was essential the war go on, with America in it, so that Britain could eventually gain the Ottoman Empire (a la Lawrence of Arabia).
Only one problem - the Palestinians, and when the UN declared Israel a state, the Palestinians were terrorized and attacked and driven from their homes, their property confiscated, with tens of thousands of deaths.
To this very day, Israel continues its onslaught, and the Western Powers turn a blind eye, though it seems that Israel has finally overstepped its boundaries sufficiently to call critical attention to itself.
Israel can no longer play the Anti-Semitic card. Yes, there is, and has been, Anti-Semitism, but criticism of the State of Israel is NOT Anti-Semitism, it's truth in search of peace.
To the tune $8.5 millions dollars a day, the US supports Israel's torturous policies, policies aimed at eradication of the Palestinians, both Arab and Christian, and claiming 100% of Palestine for the State of Israel. This has nothing to do with Judaism or being Jewish (many a Jew is NOT a Zionist, and many have opposed and continue to oppose its murderous policies), but being a terrorist nation, a lover of violence and cruelty.
Ms. Weir's book deserves wide reading if anyone wants to understand the anomaly of Israel, American's "special relationship" with Israel, the horrors of the Middle East, and why the Palestinian Cause needs to be defended.
I was once mystified by the Balfour Declaration - why?
Why did Britain make such a declaration?
An obvious clue was when the declaration was made - in the middle of WWI, but other then that it seemed a baffling mystery to me. This wonderful book gives a detailed answer.
Of course the book is about much much more, as the subtitle states: The hidden history of how the U.S. was used to create Israel.
"Warren and his film crew were filming an interview with Begin in 1974. "The red light had come on, under the lens. Without preamble, I turned my shoulder to the camera, stared straight into Begin's eyes, and asked: 'How does it feel, in the light of all that's going on, to be the father of terrorism in the Middle East?' In the Middle East?' he bellowed, in his thick, cartoon accent. 'In all the world.'"
Fascinating look at the relationship between the US and various Zionist organizations and the lengths they went to in order for Israel to become a reality. Some of the info in here is jaw dropping and it's amazing how much we don't know about what went on behind the scenes. The book is meticulously researched, so much so that weblinks and citations makeup half the book. This book is well worth the read for those who want to know the full story about the creation of Israel.
Clear and concise. This book describes how the Zionist have waged a war of terror against the Palestinians. It also explains the complicity of the US in this genocide. Heart wrenching but worth the read. Israel is a terrorist organization pretending to be a legitimate government.
I agree with the general theme of this book but some of the things she's presenting as facts are things that she probably shouldn't be. Before starting this I tried to find out a little about Alison Weir, as I usually do when considering reading books by people I've never heard of. Having already wasted a pretty good deal of time researching the Israel-Palestine conflict, Zionism, AIPAC, U.S. foreign policy, etc. I already know which side I'm on and won't waste even one more second of my life on anyone that demonizes Palestinians. So having listened to some of her interviews she at least checked out as not being on the wrong side. However, some other people who are also on the right side weren't too favorable of her. Most seemed to just be annoyed with her for granting interviews to any idiot that was against Israel, like some right-wing white nationalist types. I've got some mixed feelings on that myself but it depends on what exactly was said in these interviews and I haven't actually heard any of them. Max Blumenthal, who's opinion on this subject I usually respect, said something like her book isn't even worth the pulp it's printed on. Personally, I wouldn't go that far but his criticism was based on the same issues I had. While It wouldn't surprise me if the "facts" she uses were true, there isn't enough proof for anyone to say they know all these things are facts. This book deals with a really touchy subject that requires scrupulous research and carefully worded arguments. The way this book is put together just makes it too easy for detractors to discredit it. In my opinion she probably does believe everything she says and I do appreciate what she's trying to do but it just seems like one more thing for Zionists to point at as further evidence of our side's supposed dishonesty.
Whenever you see a book like this you tend to think it's going to be a wild-eyed rant of the sort seen in Facebook comments, only longer. But this is not that. Weir has documented and cited a tremendous amount of evidence revealing the Zionist machinations throughout the 20th century. Every American should read this and wonder why Israel receives more U.S. Foreign aid than any other country, year in and year out.
I've been to Israel and I've been to Palestine. What's going on there is a travesty and an injustice to humanity. And we Americans are blinded to that fact by our own media.
I asked a former Israeli soldier if there was ever a conversation in Israel about whether they were any different towards the Arabs than the Nazis were to the jews. He expressed displeasure that I would even suggest such a thing, then admitted "Well, maybe 1938 Germany."
For follow up reading may I suggest "The General's Son" by Miko Peled and Joe Sacco's graphic novels "Palestine" and "Footnotes in Gaza."
Bev and I heard Alison Weir speak in Rochester, NY and were very impressed by the depth of her knowledge and bought this book. It is a quick read as more than half of the books are foot notes etc. I thought I knew a lot but this book added a lot to my understanding of the dynamics of Israel, the US and Palestine. Subsequently she came to our town and we hosted her at our home. She really cares about the problems that Israel has caused and the extreme destruction in Gaza. Her websites http://www.ifamericansknew.org and http://www.councilforthenationalinter... great resources if you are interested.
I read Illan Pappe' and had an epithamy, and after reading this, Whoa! I never imagined how organized and how far back in American history this all began. Now I realize the reason for all the "Friends of the IDF" chapters around the USA in 2015! Wow!
What an eye opener on how Zionism played a role in US politics since 1910. I always wanted to know why President Truman recognized Israel though many advisors were against the move. Here you have an answer.
This is a revealing book. For those who want the truth behind the founding of Israel, this is a good book. There are 93 pages of text then over 100 pages of footnotes. There is also a reading list and an index. Reading this book shed much light on the situation there today.
Alison Weir is the founder of If Americans Knew, an organization and website she felt compelled to create after visiting Israel/Palestine for the first time and observing firsthand the bewildering disconnect between the sanitized media reports and the brutal reality of the one-sided mass murder and barbaric subjugation that is erroneously labeled a "conflict" in the Middle East.
This book is an absolutely essential read for anyone who identifies as a patriot, a conservative, a Christian, an anti-Zionist, or a non-Jewish leftist. Packed with extremely rare buried information about the Zionist conspiracy, it is only 95 pages long before another 100 pages of explanatory endnotes and then another 40 pages of citations. A sequel is supposedly in the works, but it's been nearly a decade since this book was published and I haven’t heard any news since. Which is a shame because I would eagerly read it.
If I said I wasn’t concerned reviewing this book I would be lying. Anytime one speaks out publicly about Israel, one runs the risk of being considered anti-Semitic. An online dictionary defines “Semitic” as relating to the peoples who speak Semitic languages, especially Hebrew and Arabic. Technically then, to be anti-Semitic one must be against both speakers of Hebrew and speakers of Arabic. Disposing of this technicality, common parlance accepts the idea of being anti-Semitic as harboring racist and prejudiced sentiment towards people of the Jewish faith. Since Israel is a Jewish state, the reasoning goes, to be opposed to Israel is to be opposed to Jewish people thus anti-Semitic. While this may be seen as a tangent to the book I am reviewing, I feel it necessary to be clear about what I try to be opposed to: apartheid systems of oppression, killing of unarmed women and children and many other crimes against humanity that the Israeli government perpetrates against Palestinians. This book examines the history leading up to the establishment of the Israeli state and the subsequent establishment of the relationship between Israel and the United States which has led to so many of these crimes. I do not think this makes me anti-Semitic. Others may differ; I am prepared to be educated to the contrary.
Ms. Weir’s book is extensively documented, as one would hope for a work of this nature. The first thing that I did was look into some of the source documents used to support early assertions of the diplomatic positions of Great Britain and the United States. Specifically I examined her claims about two key early developments in the coming to being of the Israeli state: the Balfour Declaration and the King-Crane Commission report. Both of the claims were sustained and both were causes of grave concern. Suffice it to say, without giving anything further away, that very early in the 20th century the wheels were already turning to bring Israel into existence – and there was an early realization that those wheels would crush hundreds of thousands of Palestinians. Yet once those wheels were in motion, many opportunities existed to prevent what is today one of the worst chapters in modern history.
A great deal of information is shared about tactics and efforts of the pro-Israel lobby – referred to as Zionists before Israel came into existence. Two critical historical opportunities to stop this outcome included the opportunity to prevent United Nations resolution 181 from being passed and the opportunity of the United States, and President Truman specifically, to withhold support for a terrorist organization. Instead, known terrorists were escorted around the United States and met with high ranking elected officials. This occurred even though many in the State Department at the time did not believe that the interests of Israel coincided with the interests of the United States. That relationship changed over time, mainly through the use of propaganda.
Two significant ironies leapt out at me from this book: one, the use of boycotts and threats of boycotts by the Zionists in order to achieve their goal and two, the true origins of terrorism in the Middle East. First, the use of boycotts by Zionists at the time is especially ironic considering the current stance in the United States which opposes protest of Israeli actions toward Palestinians by use of boycotts, divestment and sanctions. This has even reached the point of having legislation introduced recently in the U.S. Senate to make protesting Israel by suggestion of boycotts, divestment or sanctions illegal. Of course the trend toward cracking down on freedom of speech is not surprising when one considers all of the misconduct by Israel that goes unremarked by the United States government – allegedly the greatest democracy ever.
The second irony is that terrorist tactics in the Middle East were first employed by the Zionists. They were trying to establish territorial gains for the establishment of Israel. To do so they had to kill and displace the Palestinians who were occupying the land they wanted. They were also trying to oust the British and force them to abide by their promises in the Balfour Declaration. The bombing of the King David Hotel killed 91 people and injured scores more. It was carried out by Menachem Begin (“Begin had also publicly taken credit for other terrorist acts, including blowing up the King David Hotel”) a future Prime Minister of Israel. Weir writes, “The State Department, fully aware of his violent activities in Palestine, tried to reject Begin’s visa but was overruled by Truman.” (citing Lilenthal, What Price Israel, page 79).
When I looked through the references to this book I was able to identify another six or seven that I would like to read. I know most of them will be hard to come by – and I may never be able to do so. However, I feel as though in this book I have learned a lot of history I did not know before. What I did not get from this book is a sense of justice. In fact, I am not sure it is possible for the Palestinians to ever have justice. Their ability to exercise self-determination was ripped from their hands in the 1940s. When they did democratically elect Hamas, the results of that election were not recognized by the two main oppressors – Israel and the United States. This is no surprise considering the infamous history of these two nations together.
I recommend this book strongly. Once you’ve read it I also recommend Jimmy Carter’s book: Palestine: Peace not Apartheid.
An excellent book that should be mandatory reading for all Americans - and Europeans. Whilst brief is is extremely well researched and referenced. I would add that the concerted Zionist campaign to smear and destroy its author simply gives more credibility to its contents.
A very interesting look at how the early Zionist lobby influenced US, UN, and British foreign policy.
The anti-Zionist bias of this author is obvious. He never once considers an alternate explanation and is extremely vague when remarking on the causes of violence perpetrated by or against Zionists.
That said, I find the parallels between this author's description of the early Zionist's political influencing, pressure on news organizations, and the canceling of journalists & politicians critical of their cause, remarkably similar to the pro Islamists / Chinese movements and lobbies of today.
Regardless of who did what to whom first. Or who learned their techniques from whom, we should all remain aware that claims of bigotry, intolerance, and racism, have been used before to cover up and to silence those who would expose evil.
If I learned anything from reading this book, it is an increased weariness of people who use slurs to silence their opponents.
I am a searcher of truth. There is much truth in this book. Truth people don't acknowledge , truth that is not taught and truth that is called lies. In our day and age we have the advantage of being able to dispute any even with facts if we do our own due dilligent research. And then we can know the real truth.Highly recommended...
One of the things that intrigued me the most about Israel was that the whole world had normalised the exodus of a people walking over and claiming a land as their own, on the basis of a covenant with God.
I knew it could not be this simple. People are not uprooted painlessly. Artificial states cannot be created peacefully.
This book, with brilliant research (more than half the book is filled with the citations and endnotes) shows that Israel was created in sin - with full US support. Several good Americans tried to stand with the Palestinians, and suffered for it.
American policy remains in favour of Zionism to this day, but I wish more people read this book because with more awareness, the policies might just change a little bit.
Extraordinarily well researched book; well structured and convincing, well annotated history of Zionism in USA. We have to open ypu eyes to know what's happening in Palestine. it will definitely help everyone to get a clear picture of gross violation of self determination and human rights of natives of Palestine
Extremely important information regarding the extremes Zionists went to to get the state of Israel established. Very shocking! And extremely well documented. A must read. I read once, then went through it again taking notes so that I can better tell others.