The Crisis of Zionism by Peter Beinart

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Mr. Beinart is likely to test the resolve of even his most sympathetic readers with the marching orders he issues in "The Crisis of Zionism."
-WSJ online

Synopsis

Israel's next great crisis may come not with the Palestinians or Iran but with young American Jews

A dramatic shift is taking place in Israel and America. In Israel, the deepening occupation of the West Bank is putting Israeli democracy at risk. In the United States, the refusal of major Jewish organizations to defend democracy in the Jewish state is alienating many young liberal Jews from Zionism itself. In the next generation, the liberal Zionist dream—the dream of a state that safeguards the Jewish people and cherishes democratic ideals—may die.

In The Crisis of Zionism, Peter Beinart lays out in chilling detail the looming danger to Israeli democracy and the American Jewish establishment's refusal to confront it. And he offers a fascinating, groundbreaking portrait of the two leaders at the center of the crisis: Barack Obama, America's first "Jewish president," a man steeped in the liberalism he learned from his many Jewish friends and mentors in Chicago; and Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister who considers liberalism the Jewish people's special curse. These two men embody fundamentally different visions not just of American and Israeli national interests but of the mission of the Jewish people itself.

Beinart concludes with provocative proposals for how the relationship between American Jews and Israel must change, and with an eloquent and moving appeal for American Jews to defend the dream of a democratic Jewish state before it is too late.

 

About Peter Beinart

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Peter Beinart is the author of The Icarus Syndrome and The Good Fight. A former editor of The New Republic, he is a senior political writer for The Daily Beast and the editor-in-chief of Open Zion, a blog about Israel and the Jewish future at thedailybeast.com. He is an associate professor of journalism and political science at the City University of New York and a senior fellow at The New America Foundation. He lives with his family in New York City.
 
Published March 27, 2012 by Times Books. 304 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Religion & Spirituality. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Crisis of Zionism
All: 3 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 2

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Jonathan Rosen on Apr 13 2012

How you condense a thorny complexity into a short book says a great deal about your relationship to history — and to language. Beinart is especially good at invoking facts as a way of dismissing them.

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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Daniel Freedman on Mar 26 2012

Mr. Beinart is likely to test the resolve of even his most sympathetic readers with the marching orders he issues in "The Crisis of Zionism."

Read Full Review of The Crisis of Zionism | See more reviews from WSJ online

LA Times

Below average
Reviewed by David Lauter on May 12 2012

Beinart wrote a call to action, but provides little evidence to expect any will occur.

Read Full Review of The Crisis of Zionism | See more reviews from LA Times

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67%

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