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Aug 2015: Call on Global leaders to lift the Gaza blockade



BSST is the leading charity focusing on small-scale grass roots cross community, anti poverty and humanitarian projects in Israel/Palestine

JfJfP comments


14 Nov:Letter to the Guardian about the Board of Deputies

11 Nov: UK ban on visiting Palestinian mental health workers

20 Oct: letter in the Guardian

13 Sep: Rosh Hashanah greetings

21 Aug: JfJfP on Jeremy Corbyn

29 July: Letter to Evening Standard about its shoddy reporting

24 April: Letter to FIFA about Israeli football

15 April: Letter re Ed Miliband and Israel

11 Jan: Letter to the Guardian in response to Jonathan Freedland on Charlie Hebdo


15 Dec: Chanukah: Celebrating the miracle of holy oil not military power

1 Dec: Executive statement on bill to make Israel the nation state of the Jewish people

25 Nov: Submission to All-Party Parliamentary Group Against Antisemitism

7 Sept: JfJfP Executive statement on Antisemitism

3 Aug: Urgent disclaimer

19 June Statement on the three kidnapped teenagers

25 April: Exec statement on Yarmouk

28 Mar: EJJP letter in support of Dutch pension fund PGGM's decision to divest from Israeli banks

24 Jan: Support for Riba resolution

16 Jan: EJJP lobbies EU in support of the EU Commission Guidelines, Aug 2013–Jan 2014


29 November: JfJfP, with many others, signs a "UK must protest at Bedouin expulsion" letter

November: Press release, letter to the Times and advert in the Independent on the Prawer Plan

September: Briefing note and leaflet on the Prawer Plan

September: JfJfP/EJJP on the EU guidelines with regard to Israel

14th June: JfJfP joins other organisations in protest to BBC

2nd June: A light unto nations? - a leaflet for distribution at the "Closer to Israel" rally in London

24 Jan: Letter re the 1923 San Remo convention

18 Jan: In Support of Bab al-Shams

17 Jan: Letter to Camden New Journal about Veolia

11 Jan: JfJfP supports public letter to President Obama

Comments in 2012 and 2011



Books on Israel-Palestine

A guide to the literature on Israel-Palestine and the wider region

There are a very large number of good books and other literature relating to the history and development of Israel-Palestine. Many of the books are listed on the following pages on the website. (Some selected material that is freely available online is also described in the Analysis and Background pages of this website. )

Most recently published books

Older books:

1. Memoirs/biography/oral testimonies
2. The Arts: fiction/poetry/photography
3. History
4. Current affairs/politics

Here is a varied (and inevitably idiosyncratic) list of 10 useful introductory books suggested by various JfJfP signatories that would make a good starting point:
Mike Berry & Greg Philo: Israel and Palestine: Competing Histories (Pluto Press, 2006) [A free PDF version is available; click here ]
Publisher’s description: This uniquely accessible book will appeal to anyone looking for an approachable introduction. Uniquely, the authors show how there are many different, competing histories. They offer an overview of the wide range of contending viewpoints, and indicate those which are based on the most considered historical research.

Martin Bunton: The Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: A Very Short Introduction (OUP, 2013)
Publisher’s description: In this accessible and stimulating Very Short Introduction, Martin Bunton clearly explains the history of the problem, reducing it to its very essence – a modern territorial contest between two nations and one geographical territory. Adopting a fresh and original approach, each section covers a twenty-year span, to highlight the historical complexity of the conflict throughout successive decades.

Gregory Harms & Todd Ferry: The Palestinian- Israeli Conflict: A Basic Introduction (Pluto, 2012, 3rd edition)
Publisher’s description: Perfect for the general reader, as well as students, it offers a comprehensive yet lucid rendering of the conflict, setting it in its proper historical context. Harms and Ferry show how today’s violence is very much a product of recent history, with its roots in the twentieth century. This balanced account is now fully up to date, including the ongoing situation in Gaza.

Raja Shehadeh: Palestinian Walks: Notes on a Vanishing Landscape (Profile Books, 2008)
Publisher’s description: When Raja Shehadeh first started hill walking in Palestine, in the late 1970s, he was not aware that he was travelling through a vanishing landscape. Six walks span a period of twenty-six years, in the hills around Ramallah, in the Jerusalem wilderness and through the ravines by the Dead Sea. Each walk takes place at a different stage of Palestinian history since 1982, the first in the empty pristine hills and the last amongst the settlements and the wall.

Avi Shlaim: The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World (Penguin, 2014, 2nd edition)
Publisher’s description: In the 1920s, hard-line Zionists developed the doctrine of the ‘Iron Wall': negotiations with the Arabs must always be from a position of military strength, and only when sufficiently strong Israel would be able to make peace with her Arab neighbours. This doctrine, argues Shlaim, became central to Israeli policy; dissenters were marginalized and many opportunities to reconcile with Palestinian Arabs were lost.

Saree Makdisi: Palestine Inside Out: An Everyday Occupation (Norton, 2010)
Publisher’s description: Tending one’s fields, visiting a relative, going to the hospital: for ordinary Palestinians, such activities require negotiating permits and passes, curfews and closures, “sterile roads” and “seam zones”—bureaucratic hurdles ultimately as deadly as outright military incursion. In Palestine Inside Out, Makdisi draws on eye-opening statistics, academic histories, UN reports, and contemporary journalism to reveal how the “peace process” institutionalized Palestinians’ loss of control over their inner and outer lives.

Jeff Halper: An Israeli in Palestine: Resisting Dispossession, Redeeming Israel (Pluto, 2010, 2nd edition)
Publisher’s description: J Halper throws a harsh light on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the point of view of a critical insider. While the Zionist founders of Israel created a vibrant society, culture and economy, they did so at a high price: Israel could not maintain its exclusive Jewish character without imposing on the country’s Palestinian population policies of ethnic cleansing, occupation and discrimination. An Israeli in Palestine records Halper’s journey ‘beyond the membrane’ that shields his people from the harsh realities of Palestinian life to his ‘discovery’ that he was actually living in another country: Palestine.

Ilan Pappe: The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine (Oneworld, 2007)
Publisher’s description: Ilan Pappe’s groundbreaking book revisits the formation of the State of Israel. Between 1947 and 1949, over 400 Palestinian villages were deliberately destroyed, civilians were massacred and around a million men, women, and children were expelled from their homes at gunpoint. Denied for almost six decades, had it happened today it could only have been called “ethnic cleansing”. Decisively debunking the myth that the Palestinian population left of their own accord in the course of this war, Pappe offers impressive archival evidence to demonstrate that, from its very inception, a central plank in Israel’s founding ideology was the forcible removal of the indigenous population.

Sandy Tolan: The Lemon Tree (Black Swan, 2008) (Fiction)
Publisher’s description: In the summer of 1967 three young Palestinian men ventured into the town of Ramla in Israel. They were cousins, on a pilgrimage to see their childhood homes, from which they and their families had been driven out nearly twenty years earlier. One cousin had the door slammed in his face; one found that his old house had been converted into a school. But the third, Bashir, was met at the door by a young woman named Dalia, who invited him in….This poignant encounter is the starting point for the story of two families – one Arab, one Jewish – which spans the fraught modern history of the region.

Radwa Ashour: The woman from Tantoura (American University in Cairo Press, 2014) (Fiction)
Publisher’s description: This novel is first and foremost a powerful human story, following the life of a young girl from her days in the village of al-Tantoura in Palestine up to the dawn of the new century. We participate in events as they unfold, seeing them through the uneducated but sharply intelligent mind of Ruqayya, as she tries to make sense of all that has happened to her and her family. With her, we live her love of her land and of her people; we feel the repeated pain of loss, of diaspora, and of cross-generational misunderstanding; and above all, we come to know her indomitable human spirit.

Please contact us if you have any recommendations for other books that could be included in this list.

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