Kevin's Reviews > From Time Immemorial: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict Over Palestine

From Time Immemorial by Joan Peters
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it was amazing

This book is by far the most objective view of WTF is going on over there wrt the Isrealis and the band of squatters / former citizens of the Turkish suzerain. Call me biased.
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Ismoked420bluntz no it's actually a hoax, read about it

Laura This book is not a hoax. If you follow the little circle of people who initiated that little propaganda tagline (chomsky, finkelstein and cronies), they all quote each other. I research this stuff in my graduate work, and when I saw how it all loops back around to the same group, I actually laughed out loud. Funny how easily people fall for propaganda that fits their innate biases..doesn't help peace though.

message 3: by Todd (new)

Todd Laura, highly credible people have discredited this book (see here:, as well as numerous publications here in the UK which fact checked before writing articles, and even the beloved NYTimes). However, arguing this issue is silly, not because it's been settled (it is a fraud!) but because it's a distraction from what we should be focusing on. The sad thing is that this argument is used to justify the continued perpetration of human rights violations against an entire people, which is unconscionable. Rather than argue this pointless issue (i.e. where a people came from 60+ years ago is relevant to how we treat them today - can't believe you can't see how that opens a can of worms for the zionists, but that's beside the point!) let's figure out a way out of this mess where we first honour and respect these people, who are humans and above all else deserve the same rights and privileges enjoyed by Israelis. This is the issue we should be arguing, unless you don't believe the people who call themselves Palestinians deserve to be treated with respect and dignity as I'm sure you must demand of others regarding yourself.

message 4: by Laura (last edited May 04, 2011 01:00PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Laura Oh Todd...don’t worry, I am quite aware of the propaganda out there designed for those with low-depth research capabilities. Wikipedia has never been cited in any of my papers though. :-)
There is not one credible historian or academic who calls this a hoax. Newspaper editorials and opinion pieces are not academic. The late Edward Said was a professor, but as he was a megaphone for the Palestinian propaganda to filter through, you can argue his agenda was quite biased, and his presentation of the situation contained many holes. Chomsky and Finkelstein’s books are either self-published or published by a company called Verso Publishing – take a look at their page, and you’ll get a feel for their agenda. I even read Chomsky’s work (Chomsky 2002: 244-248) to investigate his claims. [the following comes from the footnote of a paper I wrote and is copyrighted]: Oddly though, he gives no examples of which piece of data he takes issue with – not one example. One would think that logically, to call an entire book a “hoax” one would have to personally research and conclude that all (or at least a majority) of the data in the book is wrong. With over 1,800 citations to choose from in Peters’ book it is certainly odd that Chomsky could not offer one example of data that he feels is wrong. Much of her data comes from historical firsthand documents from the British Mandate period that are available to the public, and that are often cited by other historians as well. She also offers the transcripts of interviews she conducted personally with Jewish victims of persecution in Muslim countries. So how does Chomsky determine these victims’ anguished words are misunderstood or a “hoax”? Unsurprisingly, he does not tell us how he arrives at this conclusion. Though his introduction to this section of his book implies a forthcoming discussion of such proof regarding its status as a hoax, he instead utilizes much of the space to simply give a brief bio of Finkelstein and praise his work (his prodigy's book-plug! unabashed, self-serving propaganda in its rawest form). Yet there are gullible people out there who fall for Chomsky's words not because they are true, but because they echo their own innate biases so distinctly that they convince themselves that they are.

message 5: by Laura (last edited May 04, 2011 12:51PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Laura Your apparent passion for human rights and dignity is interesting (and ironic). Look up Haj Amin Al-Husseini . He was a close friend of Hitler, he helped make Mein Kampf a best seller in Palestine in the 1920’s, and he urged the massacre of Jews (including children). Do you agree with this type of thinking? Al-Husseini is still revered in palestinian society today (Yasser Arafat, who was born in Egypt, was supposedly a distant relative). What about dhimmi status? Do you agree with that? Or the fact that Ottomans (who were Muslim but not Arab) made Jews wear arm bands designating themselves as Jews long before Hitler did (although Hitler obviously loved the idea).
What about the fact that over 1 million Jews were killed, persecuted, or legislated out of their home countries of Aden, Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen, and other Islamic nations – no special UN laws were invented to help them. No CNN news cameras have told their story. Baghdad used to be 40% Jewish in the 1950’s…now there are less than ten Jews left there.
What about yesterday when Arabs in Jerusalem were protesting the death of Osama bin Laden and calling him a holy warrior? You agree with them?
What about the Kornet (a missile with extreme precision) missiles purchased by palestinians with all that “foreign aid” money – they successfully targeted an Israeli elementary school bus a couple weeks ago.
In Israel, people of all races and ethnicities have more freedoms than anywhere in the Middle East. (There are Muslim-only lanes in paslestinian-controlled areas of the West Bank – do you agree with such discrimination?)
I could fill pages with examples like these. If this is with whom your sympathies lie, your idea of a peaceful world looks a whole lot different (and scarier) than mine, my friend.

Laura Also - The documents she cites are from neutral sources - and I call them neutral generously - Britain was not pro-Israel at all - in fact, they abstained from the 1947 UN vote that made Israel a state. Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and other nations were all just as recent as Israel - so why give Israel such a hard time? Jews are the longest continuous population on the land to this day (archeological evidence showing from 1800 BC - the Merneptah Stele confirms the existence of the ‘Habiru’ people in the 13th century BCE). And since there has NEVER been a time since then when Jews haven't been on the land, that makes them the oldest population there. Arabs didn't make claim to the land until the 7th century AD - about 1900 years later. :)
Does centuries of persecution that shrinks a population (like the Jews have been subjected to) eventually negate a population’s claim to a home on their land? Would you also deny the Native American Indians a state if they wanted one, being that they are a much older population? Israel takes up one TENTH of 1% of the whole Middle East – the rest is Muslim controlled. Do you think the Jews have too much land? My final question: If Jews controlled 99.9% of the Middle East, and Arabs controlled 1/10 of 1% would the world put pressure on the Arabs to split their land in half with Jews?

message 7: by Todd (new)

Todd Nice, now you're attacking me. If I were to use your (false) logic I'd say "that's not worthy of someone with hi-depth research capabilities" but I try and stay away from those sorts of tactics. The ad hominem is definitely offensive, but the more important thing here is that you seem to have *completely* missed my point and argued yours again. So, I must assume that you agree with me that this argument is indeed a distraction and takes us away from the important issue, that being that the Palestinians deserve the same basic human rights as everyone else.

message 8: by Laura (last edited May 04, 2011 04:19PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Laura And I just saw your book list which explains a lot (saw that you added a few books on the conflict just yesterday - right after you commented I presume? Way to build credibility.) Your reading list is not all that impressive as a basis to forming such a passionate opinion on the subject. You seem to mainly follow the same small circle of narrow-minded thinkers and their "Jews-are-the-root-of-all-evil agendas. Branch out a little. Aren't you bored of propaganda yet? (The fact that you read The Israel Lobby one made me laugh out loud - sorry! True academic stuff there ;) ) If you really want to explore the history, then make an honest go of it. If you are determined to be one of Chomsky's puppets who never stops and wonders why there are gaping holes in his wild claims, then I'll leave you to it.

Laura Sorry to make you defensive. Where did I attack you?

message 10: by Laura (last edited May 04, 2011 03:27PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Laura Quite from being a distraction, I believe this book sheds important light on facts that are often covered up or simply unknown. To grasp a situation fully, you must look at (and understand) the contextual history. Jews have been treated horrendously in this region for centuries (as any human rights advocate would know). There are thousands of examples of this, no need to list them.
When Britain chopped off 80% of the Palestine Mandate in 1921 and gave it to the Hussein family to rule (Trans-Jordan was re-named Jordan in 1949 - good marketing tactic - makes the country sound *a lot* older, dontcha think? ;) ), Jews were kicked off the land and barred from owning land there. This rule still exists and is enforced on Jordan's law books today. Would you agree this and other atrocities against Jews are *relevant*? Or are they too, just a "distraction" from the palestinian propaganda, er, I mean "plight".
It is my hope that one day the palestinian people agree with you and start using all that foreign aid to build themselves a state, instead of fueling hatred. As of now, though, their elected government charter still contains these words (and I quote): "Jihad, the Movement is a universal one . . . Whoever denigrates its worth, or avoids supporting it . . .whether intentionally or not, will wake up to find himself overtaken by events . . . Priority is reserved to the early comers . . . The time will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews (and kill them); until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him!” (translation from – a pro-Palestinian website).

Laura To those who took the time to read this thread (thank you): count how many valid comparative questions and references to human rights abuses I ask/mention which remain ignored here. This is a perfect example of someone who unwittingly parrots propaganda (however well-meaning), treats Chomsky like he is God, and attempts to denigrate facts uncovered by honest research, by a woman seeking to prove the opposite of what she found.

I know Todd read what I wrote because he has now removed the six books on the Middle East that he posted yesterday, which I referenced in my post. To be fair though, I choose to believe (since I don't know him) that Todd is a probably a pretty nice guy and means well. I just want people to take a more open-minded approach to learning about the M.E. Don't pick up a book assuming you already know the outcome. Pick up a book (like From Time Immemorial) and even if it goes against innate biases you may carry, entertain the notion that the 1800+ references *might* contain some truths. What you learn will surprise you and give you some understanding and appreciation for the people who make up one of the most humanitarian, life-respecting nations in the world. (Check out Israel's pioneering advances in the fields of neonatology, breast cancer, MS, Parkinsons, to name a few).

Todd, I do apologize if it came across as attacking you. It's just that I am quite suspicious of those who profess to be concerned about human rights, yet ignore and remain completely silent about the hundreds of abuses and atrocities that have gone on under Muslim rule (I mention just a handful in my posts due to space/time limitations - I do have a life), while at the same time pointing their finger at the only democracy in the Middle East, the only nation where all races, religions, and genders live freely (which many Arabs have admitted on record), and call that nation the problem.

A few facts to leave you with: Number of nations in the world with Muslim majorities: 47. Number of Jewish nations: 1. Nation that gives more to the world in humanitarian endeavors, scientific, and medical technology than the rest of the Middle East combined: Israel. Amount of land Israel takes up: 1/10 of 1% of the whole Middle East.

I really do want peace in the Middle East. It must be based on truth and understanding though, not propaganda. Propaganda circles the globe like wildfire and creating policy around it only sets future precedents that could come back to bite those who endorse it (so, in the end, potentially bad for everyone).

It is my sincere hope that the propaganda mongerers out there eventually learn to do something more productive with their energy than drum up sympathy for hate-fueled societies that sponge up foreign aid, shoot missiles at children, and give back nothing.

message 12: by David (new)

David Churchman Thank you...I have just read this thread. I wanted to read reviews on the book after being told it is worth adding to my collection. I have done so and look forward to the journey ahead.

I have since made the suggestion to another person after a discussion on the current conflict who in turn (very aggressively)told me to take a long walk off a short pier for being a fool in believing such lies.

I remain firm in my belief and look forward to completing the book.

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