Download The Balfour Declaration: The Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict Audiobook

The Balfour Declaration: The Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict Audiobook, by Jonathan Schneer Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Jonathan Schneer Narrator: Nicholas Guy Smith Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2017 ISBN: 9780525491996
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Issued in London in 1917, the Balfour Declaration was one of the key documents of the twentieth century. It committed Britain to supporting the establishment in Palestine of “a National Home for the Jewish people,” and its reverberations continue to be felt to this day. Now the entire fascinating story of the document is revealed in this impressive work of modern history.

With new material retrieved from historical archives, scholar Jonathan Schneer recounts in dramatic detail the public and private battles in the early 1900s for a small strip of land in the Middle East, battles that started when the governing Ottoman Empire took Germany’s side in World War I. The Balfour Declaration paints an indelible picture of how Arab nationalists, backed by Britain, fought for their future, as Zionists in England battled diplomatically for influence. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to either side or even to most members of the British government, Prime Minister David Lloyd George was telling Turkey that she could keep her flag flying over the disputed territory if only she would agree to a separate peace.

The key players in this watershed moment are rendered here in nuanced and detailed relief: Sharif Hussein, the Arab leader who secretly sought British support; Chaim Weizmann, Zionist hero, the folksmensch who charmed British high society; T. E. Lawrence, the legendary “super cerebral” British officer who “set the desert on fire” for the Arabs; Basil Zaharoff, the infamous arms dealer who was Britain’s most important back channel to the Turks; and the other generals and prime ministers, soldiers and negotiators, who shed blood and cut deals to grab or give away the precious land.

A book crucial to understanding the Middle East as it is today, The Balfour Declaration is a rich and remarkable achievement, a riveting volume about the ancient faiths and timeless treacheries that continue to drive global events.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “With a flourish, Smith brings to life all the parties in this intrigue, including famed adventurer T. E. Lawrence and double-dealing Prime Minister David Lloyd George. This production graphically explains why animosity lingers to this day.”

    AudioFile

  • In November 1917, the British government stated that it would “view with favour the establishment in
    Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.” It was, in retrospect, a startlingly brief statement,
    which received little attention at the time. Since then, Zionists have regarded it as a declaration of the
    Jewish right to create an independent Jewish state; for Arabs, it is viewed as an outrageous case of
    imperialist manipulation and betrayal. Schneer writes a fascinating and scrupulously balanced account of
    the events and intense maneuvers that led to the issuance of the declaration. He superbly navigates
    between the various conflicting interests and lobbying efforts of Zionists, Arabs, and opposing elements
    within the British government. There are no heroes here; one is left with the impression that the Zionists
  • won” simply because they were more relentless and ruthless than their opposition, which included many
    non-Zionist Jews.
    Booklist
  • “A work of impressive research and scholarship.”

    Newsweek

  • “[A] comprehensive study, richly documented…The way [Schneer] reveals the characters behind the diplomatic papers, bringing them to life, makes his book particularly enjoyable.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Remarkable…engagingly written, adding to our knowledge of this frequently told story without ever taking sides…This is the most original exposition of the Balfour Declaration to date.”

    Washington Post

  • Winner of the National Jewish Book Award

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About the Author

Dr. Jonathan Schneer, who received his BA from McGill University in 1971 and his PhD from Columbia University in 1978, is the modern British historian at Georgia Tech in the school of history, technology, and society. He is a coeditor of two books and the author of six more, including London 1900; The Imperial Metropolis, The Thames: England’s River and most recently The Balfour Declaration: The Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict which won a 2010 National Jewish Book Award.

About the Narrator

Nicholas Guy Smith, an AudioFile Earphones Award–winning narrator, is a highly rated and diverse voice-over actor who has been heard in feature films, television commercials, and video games. He has voiced characters for Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, and the Cartoon Network.