Israel is not the only ‘new’ state around, but it is one of the few states whose legitimacy is still questioned, and its future affects the future of the Middle East as a whole and probably the stability of the international system. The reasons for this unique reality lie in its past and the particular historical circumstances of its birth.
This book seeks to update analysis of the political history, contemporary politics, economics and foreign policy of this unique state. The first part of the book provides a general history of Israel since its inception until 2000. This general history evolves around the political development of the state, beginning with its origins in the early Zionist history (1882–1948) and ending with the turn of the century. The second part focuses on three contemporary aspects of present-day Israel: its political economy, its culture and its international relations. An epilogue describes Israel’s complex international image today and its impact on the state and its future.
Providing a solid infrastructure from which readers can form their own opinions, this book offers a fresh perspective on developments both on the ground and in recent scholarship, and is essential reading for students, journalists and policy makers with an interest in Middle Eastern History, Jewish Studies and Israel Studies.
Introduction: Narrating a Contested Country
1. From Palestine into Israel, 1800–1948
2. The "Small Israel", 1948–1967
3. The Greater Israel, 1967–2000
4. The Political Economy of Israel
5. Culture and Society in 21st Century Israel
6. Israel’s Place in the World
Epilogue: Israel’s in the World Today