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One Palestine, Complete

Jews and Arabs Under the British Mandate

Tom Segev; Translated by Haim Watzman


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ISBN10: 0805065873
ISBN13: 9780805065879

Trade Paperback

640 Pages



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A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice Best Book
Winner of the National Jewish Book Award

One Palestine, Complete explores the tumultuous period before the creation of the state of Israel. This was the era of the British Mandate, when Britain's promise to both Jews and Arabs that they would inherit the land set in motion a great conflict that haunts the region to this day.

Drawing on untapped archival materials, Tom Segev reconstructs a time (1917 to 1948) of limitless possibilities and tragic missteps. He introduces an array unforgettable characters, tracks the steady advance of Jews and Arabs toward confrontation, and puts forth a radical new argument: that the British, far from being pro-Arab, consistently favored the Zionist position. Further, Segev argues that the British did so out of the mistaken—and anti-Semitic—belief that Jews turned the wheels of history. Rich in historical detail, sensitive to all perspectives, One Palestine, Complete brilliantly depicts the decline of an empire, the birth of one nation, and the tragedy of another.


Praise for One Palestine, Complete

"The best single account of Palestine under the British mandate . . . This will doubtlessly become the authoritative text for the pre-state history of Israel."—Omer Bartov, The New York Times Book Review

"Sharp, skillful . . . Segev certainly knows how to write a riveting tale."—Anita Shapira, The New Republic

"A brilliant, truthful, and compassionate book . . . In all the vast literature about Palestine/Israel, this is the only book with equal insight into all of the protagonists."—Arthur Hertzberg, author of Jews: The Essence and Character of a People

"An antidote to myths . . . A book of pressing relevance . . . We should be thankful."—Gershom Gorenberg, Washington Post Book World

"Remarkable and poignant . . . Important for any understanding of the Middle East conflict."—Susan Muaddi, Philadelphia Weekly

"Masterly . . . Well-informed and impartial . . . Sets the historical record straight."—Patrick Martin, Toronto Globe & Mail

"A fresh look at a period that at times prefigured the present . . . Compelling."—Seth Gitell, Boston Phoenix

"A wonderfully readable account of the mandate, classic and magisterial in unpacking the story . . . At various times one wants to wrestle it, hurl it against the wall, salute it, even slap it on the back in congratulation . . . A fascinating book."—Carlin Romano, Philadelphia Inquirer

"Thoroughly researched [and] incisive."—Steve Lipman, Jewish Week

"Never have we had a book documenting life under the British with the precision, magic, and charm of One Palestine, Complete . . . Segev has chosen wonderfully tangible details for a rich and fascinating fresco . . . He treats the Mandate period as a novel, laying out all the elements needed to further the plot over the next fifty years. Here are the seeds of all that has come to pass . . . Clearly, the tensions, problems, and ills plaguing the country today were very much alive then."—Ha'aretz

Thrilling and eye-opening."—Benny Morris, author of Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict 1881-1999

"This book is hard to put down. Events are fascinatingly told from three viewpoints . . . The mistakes made by the British, Jews, and Arabs that led to the current impasse are clearly evident in Segev's book."—J. Zel Lurie, Hadassah Magazine

"Loaded with information on the British mandate and the people who ran it."—Sol Schindler, Washington Times

"Segev handles his material with a historian's scrupulous scholarship and a journalist's eye for storytelling. Sophisticated in its analysis and fair in its judgments, One Palestine, Complete isn't a chronicle of heroes or villains."—Dave Luhrssen, Milwaukee Shephard Express

"Exceedingly well written . . . Certain to become a landmark of information on the history of Israel."—David Rosenfield, Houston Jewish Herald-Voice

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Tom Segev; Translated by Haim Watzman

Tom Segev is a columnist for Ha'aretz, Israel's leading newspaper, and author of three works on the history of Israel, 1949: The First Israelis, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust, and One Palestine, Complete: Jews and Arabs under the British Mandate. He lives in Jerusalem.

Tom Segev