2017 marked the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War and Israel’s capture of Jerusalem and the West Bank.  Despite the lapse in time the Israeli-Palestinian peace process remains one of the most intractable disputes in modern history.

With extensive visits throughout the West Bank and Israel, our tour looks at views from both sides, from right wing settlers to Palestinian militant groups and the mainstream political parties.

DATESSaturday, 5th May – Sunday, 13th May, 2018
DESTINATIONJerusalem, Ramallah, Bethlehem, Tel Aviv

Led by Gershon Baskin with keynote speaker Dahlia Scheindlin

DURATION8 nights
All AccommodationMeals and Water
Local TransportationExpert Guide
COSTCost: £4200.00
Single supplement: £500.00

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Cost: £4200.00

Single supplement: £500.00

We examine the remaining obstacles to a two-state solution including Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the status of Jerusalem, Israeli concerns over security and the right of Palestinian refugees to return.

With little progress in decades groups on both sides now advocate a one-state solution for both nations, but just where would that lead?

We meet with leading political figures and analysts as well as ordinary people as we explore one of the most complex issues in the world.

The tour is led by Gershon Baskin, one of Israel’s best-known commentators on the peace process. The founder of a joint Israeli-Palestinian think tank, Gershon also helped to negotiate the release of the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit from captivity in Gaza. Dahlia Scheindlin, an Israeli political strategist is a keynote speaker on our Israel and Palestine tours

As with all of our expert-led tours, we ensure that our groups remain small and intimate, and will not exceed 14 people. Flights aren’t included in the tour price and should be arranged by customers themselves or with an agent.

As with all of our tours the itinerary focuses on current affairs, and owing to the dynamic nature of politics means that local conditions may lead us adjust the final schedule.

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Day 1

Saturday, 5th May: East Jerusalem

Welcome dinner. Local and international analysts give an overview of where Israel and Palestine stand. The main issues, the main players, a brief overview of how we got to where we are, and the possibility of future negotiations. Overnight Jerusalem.
Day 2

Sunday, 6th May: Jerusalem

Meetings with diplomats and journalists for their take on the peace process. We visit the Old City, visiting all three major holy sites: the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Haram al-Sharif and the Western Wall. The Temple Mount, Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque have become the focal point of political tensions. Overnight Jerusalem. 
Day 3

Monday, 7th May: Introduction to Palestine

We head into the West Bank for an introduction to Palestine and Palestinian politics. Crossing the Israeli-controlled checkpoint at Qalandiya, we enter Ramallah the centre of Palestinian governmental administration. We look at the structure of the Palestinian Authority since the Oslo Accords. After lunch, a local guide takes us on a tour of the wall and explains its impact on Ramallah. Overnight Ramallah.
Day 4

Tuesday, 8th May: The northern West Bank

We drive north to Nablus, a flashpoint between Palestinian fighters and the Israeli army. Visit to Balata, the largest refugee camp in the West Bank, where we discuss issues of internal displacement and the role of the UN. The right of return is one of the major stumbling blocks in the peace process. Home-cooked lunch in the Old City with an inspirational women’s group who are using local food and age old recipes to bring people together and uplift the community.  Overnight Ramallah.
Day 5

Wednesday, 9th May: The southern West Bank

From Ramallah to Bethlehem is around 20km as the crow flies. But Jerusalem, and multiple Israeli checkpoints stand in the way. Brief visit of Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. The afternoon is devoted to first-hand exploration of Hebron, a city holy to Judaism and Islam that was divided by the Oslo Accords, where 250,000 Palestinians are separated by walls, barbed wire and the Israeli army from around 700 Jewish settlers, who occupy part of the city’s old quarter. Overnight Bethlehem.
Day 6

Thursday, 10th May: The Desert & the Settlements

The desert mountain of Masada is a focus for Zionist identity, where the story of Jewish courage and resistance to Roman rule is told to each generation. We meet with members of Israel’s Bedouin community. This government is resettling the Bedouin in state-approved townships. Israel’s settlements in the West Bank will be key to any final resolution of conflict: we visit the Gush Etzion, a cluster of settlements south of Jerusalem. Overnight Bethlehem.
Day 7

Friday, 11th May: Nazareth & Zichron Yachov

This morning we drive north to the largest Arab city inside Israel, Nazareth has both a long history and a densely complex modern existence, shared between Muslim and Christian Palestinians within the city centre and Jewish Israelis in the separate town of Upper Nazareth nearby.  Tensions between the two communities have surfaced amid competing needs. After Nazareth we head to Zirchron Yaakov, one of the earliest 20th century Jewish settlements in Palestine. Here we will be hosted in people’s homes, an opportunity to see how mainstream Israeli’s view the current state of politics and the peace-process.  After tea we proceed down the Mediterranean coast to Israel’s bustling commercial capital Tel Aviv. Overnight Tel Aviv.
Day 8

Saturday, 12th May: Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv is home to some of Israel’s most important political think tanks, academics and human rights groups. We use this final day to both review the tour and examine the range of political forces within Israel. Is there any hope of renewed commitment to the peace-process? Farewell dinner and overnight Tel Aviv. At dinner we begin to review the weeks events. Overnight Tel Aviv.

Day 9

Sunday, 13th May: Tel Aviv

Overview of the tour at breakfast; departure for airports.


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What’s Included

All of your accommodation and meals with water are included, as well as local transport (except during your free time). Flights are not included in the price and need to be arranged by customers themselves or with an agent. We can advise you on reservations if you need any help.

Following the News

Like all our tours the itinerary is focused on current affairs. Events on the ground may change and the final schedule may be adjusted accordingly.

This tour starts in Jerusalem and ends in Tel Aviv.

Group size

As on all our expert-led tours the groups are deliberately small and will not exceed 14 people. Limited spaces are available.

Do I need a Visa?

Most travellers to Israel with Political Tours do not require a visa (e.g. EU, US, UK, Canada, New Zealand and Australia).

UK, EU, USA, Australian and New Zealand passport holders don’t need a visa to enter Israel as a tourist. On entry, visitors are granted leave to enter for a period of up to 3 months. Visitors entering via Ben Gurion airport are given an entry card instead of an entry stamp in their passport. You should keep your entry card with your passport until you leave. This is evidence of your legal entry into Israel and may be required, particularly at any crossing points into the Occupied Palestinian Territories. 

Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

Evidence of a previous visit to another country in the region like an entry/exit stamp in your passport does not normally prevent entry into Israel, although it may lead to additional questioning at the border. It is for the Israeli authorities to determine the right of entry into Israel.

Does Israel stamp my passport?

Israel no longer stamps travellers passports. You will be given an entry ticket at immigration which you need to keep with your passport until you leave the country.

FCO Website – Travel Advice

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office publishes regularly updated travel information on its website www.fco.gov.uk/knowbeforeyougo which you are recommended to consult before booking and in good time before departure. Where it considers it appropriate to do so, the FCO may advise against all travel or all but essential travel to particular countries or parts of particular countries. Similarly, the FCO may withdraw any such previously given advice. Where the FCO issues such advice, we may as a result cancel your tour or make changes so as to avoid the area concerned (see clause 10 or our conditions). Alternatively, we may ask you to sign a form confirming you wish to proceed with the tour notwithstanding the FCO advice. It is in the nature of the itineraries we offer that the FCO may have issued such advice in relation to the country or parts of the country we are intending to visit prior to confirmation of your booking. In this case, you will be asked to sign the above form before we confirm your booking.

Medical Requirements

Advice on health requirements may be obtained from your GP, or alternatively from the Department of Health Leaflet Advice on Health for Travelers, or the Department of Health in the UK. For further information on vaccination requirements, health outbreaks and general disease protection and prevention you should visit http://www.fitfortravel.scot.nhs.uk/destinations.aspx


The Israeli shekel is used in both Israel and throughout the West Bank. ATM’s are readily accessible, and cards can be used for payments in a wide variety of places.


The weather is mild, with a Mediterranean climate. The rainy season is between November and April and winters can be cold and wet. Southern Areas may become very hot during summer months.

What to Wear

Generally dress requirements in Israel and Palestine are quite relaxed. However during our tour we visit places where groups may be more religious or conservative, so we recommend you have clothing that covers your arms and legs. T shirts and shorts should be avoided on these days. Women will also need to cover their heads to enter mosques or synagogues.

Secondly we also have a range of meeting with politicians or senior officials where we are expected to be more formally dressed. We will advise you on a day-by-day basis on which meetings are coming up.

Men: Will need a jacket for some of the meetings.

Women: The female equivalent; jacket or blouse.

Electricity and Plugs

Electricity works through a European 2 round pin plug socket and is a standard 230v.

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Gershon Baskin

Gershon Baskin Ph.D., is the founding Co-Chairman of IPCRI, the Israel Palestine Center for Research and Information (www.ipcri.org), a columnist for The Jerusalem Post and the initiator and negotiator of the secret back channel for the release of Gilad Schalit.

Baskin served as an outside adviser on the peace process to late prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and on a Jerusalem experts committee under former prime minister Ehud Barak.  He was the first civil servant in Israel responsible for Jewish-Arab relations in Israel, working in the Ministry of Education under Zvulen Hammer, and as the founder and director of the Institute for Education for Jewish-Arab Coexistence. Baskin is a graduate of the Young Judaea movement. He made aliya from New York in 1978 and lives in Jerusalem.

Dr. Dahlia Scheindlin

Dr. Dahlia Scheindlin is a public opinion expert and an international political and strategic consultant; she is also an academic and a writer. Her doctoral research examined unrecognized states, which emerged from ethno-nationalist conflicts and declared independence unilaterally. In the past, she has worked as a Senior Analyst for the Washington-based global firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research; the director of international campaigns at GCS Issue Management, and a researcher at the Israel Democracy Institute. She has advised and conducted research on five national campaigns in Israel.

As an independent consultant, she conducts extensive public opinion research on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the peace process, along with issues of democracy, human rights, minority relations and foreign affairs for a wide range of NGOs. Ms. Scheindlin works internationally on electoral campaigns, social and civil society projects in Serbia, Ukraine, Cyprus, Greece, Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria and the US among other countries. Ms. Scheindlin holds a doctorate in political science at Tel Aviv University; she is an adjunct university lecturer, a regular media commentator, and she writes a regular column at +972 Magazine, where she is also Chairperson of the Board of Directors.

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Israel and Palestine

“The tour gave me an insightful glimpse into the complex issues of the Israel/Palestine situation.   Hearing first hand from people closely involved and well informed from both sides was, in my view, exceptional.  I thought we had a good range of views across the spectrum” CF, 2017

“The tour revealed to me many things I would never ever have known if I hadn’t had access to people so involved in the situation.  It offered intelligent (usually) comment on the situation – enhanced by the calibre of people within the group.”  Sept, 2017

“Top marks all round.” Israel & Palestine, 2017

“The speakers we were introduced to were excellent” Israel & Palestine, 2017

“There were many highlights to the tour.  Meeting Hanan Ashwari was a particular honour.  But the people who I enjoyed most, were Bassam and Yahav. I may have been influenced by the time we had with both of these guys, but what I enjoyed most was their warm approach to explaining quite complex issues.  Both men were exceptional additions to my insights into a deeply complex situation.  Having said that Roi, Fayrouz and Sam Bahour were also exceptional – and all offered insights into the problems faced by people of this area.  Fatima was also a standout for the organisation she has founded and her drive to make changes within her community.” Israel & Palestine, 2017

“I got a very sound basis for forming my own opinion about the Middle East conflict. I saw more than one place that I would not have seen without the tour.” CM, Israel & Palestine 2017

“Provided a balance view I did not have previously” Sept, 2017

“Your staff and the experts made all the difference.  I cannot imagine the experience would have run as smoothly, been as informative or as enjoyable without them.  There was no weak link in the chain — every expert was hugely knowledgable and effective at communicating large amounts of information.” Israel & Palestine, October 2015

“An incredible experience…  close enough to the people, the reality …”  Israel & Palestine, 2016

“Enjoyably demanding tour. To see so many places and meet with so many people in so short a time, and to absorb so much information in depth, was something we had not done before; it was very stimulating.”  Israel & Palestine, October 2015

“The main reason to travel really is the “being there” factor – the experience of seeing the reality of the West Bank for ourselves is what made the difference and gave us a context for the valuable inputs from the experts and propagandists we met. The tour’s openness to some unscheduled encounters with “ordinary” people on both sides provided further insight.” Israel & Palestine, October 2015

“Thank you both for a very stimulating 10 days…. Our best holiday ever !” Israel & Palestine, October 2016

“You understand the reality on the ground by hearing directly from people with many different points of view. We listened nonstop. We talked to politicians, businessmen, heads of NGO’s and think tanks, human right lawyers, intellectuals on all sides of the issues, the Palestinian Authority (PA), The Quartet, the Israel Defense Force, journalists, etc. We were also hosted by ordinary people in their homes. We visited throughout Israel. We went to the West Bank and talked to Jewish settlers and orthodox Jews in illegal outposts. We talked to Palestinians, rich and poor and visited Palestinian villages and Palestinian refugee camps. We met with Israeli mayors and had lunch with Jewish citizens in a middle class suburb of Tel Aviv…” Israel & Palestine, February 2014

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Suggested readings

Gershon Baskin’s Reading List

Jerome M Segal – Creating the Palestinian State

The author offers a strategy proposal for resolving the Arab-Israeli conflict in the Middle East, arguing that the existance of a Palestinian state would guarantee a humane and safe Israel.

(Dec. 1989) Lawrence Hill & Co.; 1 edition, Paperback: 187 pages, ISBN-10: 1556520557,

ISBN-13: 978-1556520556

Azzam Tamimi – Hamas: A History from Within

for any serious assessment of the Palestinian Israeli conflict.Publishers Weekly (starred review)/One must understand Hamas in order to understand the current state of the Israeli Palestinian conflict. Hamas: A History from Within provides an unrivaled account of Hamass history, structure, and objectives, largely in its own words. A grassroots organization that commands wide respect among Palestinians for its incorruptibility, Hamas is divided into two main sections: one is responsible for establishing schools, hospitals, and religious institutions; the other for military action and terror attacks carried out by its armed underground wing the Izzedine al-Qassam Brigades. Tamimis longtime relationships and extensive interviews with Hamass leading members allow him to create a more intimate portrait of Hamas, in its own words and from its own members, than has yet been available in English.

(30 April 2011) Olive Branch Press; 2nd ed. Edition, Paperback: 372 pages, ISBN-10: 1566568242

ISBN-13: 978-1566568241

Tamara Cofman Wittes – How Israelis And Palestinians Negotiate: A Cross- Cultural Analysis of the Oslo Peace Process (Cross-Cultural Negotiation Books)

 Refreshing and revealing in equal measure, this innovative volume conducts a critical/self–critical exploration of the impact of culture on the ill-fated Oslo peace process. The authors negotiators and scholars alike demolish stereotypes as they construct an unusually subtle and sophisticated understanding of how culture influences negotiating styles. Culture, they argue, did not cause the Oslo breakdown but it did play an influential, intervening role at several levels: coloring the thinking of political leaders, shaping domestic politics on both sides, and affecting each side s evaluation of the other s beliefs and intentions.After an overview by William Quandt of the history of the Oslo process and the impact of international factors such as U.S. mediation, the volume presents a detailed analysis of first Palestinian, and then Israeli negotiating styles between 1993 and 2001. Omar Dajani, a former legal advisor to the Palestinian team, explains how elements of Palestinian identity and national development have hobbled the Palestinians ability to negotiate effectively. Aharon Klieman, a distinguished Israeli analyst, traces a long-standing clash between diplomatic and security subcultures within the Israeli political elite and reveals how Israeli identity has helped create a negotiating style that opts for short-term gains while undermining the prospects for a lasting agreement. Drawing on these insights, Tamara Wittes concludes the volume by offering not only a fresh appreciation of culture s influence on interethnic negotiations but also lessons for future negotiators in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Read the review from Foreign Affairs.”

(3 Jan. 2005) United States Institute of Peace Press, Paperback: 172 pages, ISBN-10: 1929223641

ISBN-13: 978-1929223640

Robert I. Rotberg – Israeli And Palestinian Narratives of Conflict: History’s Double Helix
(Indiana Series in Middle East Studies)

“An exciting and wide-ranging exploration of the myths and narratives that lie behind the unresolved Arab-Israeli and Israeli-Palestinian conflicts. . . . Anyone dedicated to the fullest possible understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will want to read this volume cover to cover.” -Neil Caplan, Vanier College, Montreal Why does Hamas refuse to recognize the legitimacy of the state of Israel? Why do Israeli settlers in the West Bank insist that Israel has a legitimate right to that territory? What makes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict so intractable? Reflecting both Israeli and Palestinian points of view, this provocative volume addresses the two powerful, bitterly contested, competing historical narratives that underpin the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Compelling contributions by Israeli and Palestinian authors show how the intertwined reckonings of the historical past-history’s double helix-provide powerful ammunition for current battles. Just when a resolution of the conflict might seem to be on the horizon, the gulf of history resurges to separate the contenders. Palestinians and Israelis remain locked in struggle, tightly entangled and enveloped by a historical cocoon of growing complexity, fundamental disagreement, and overriding miscalculation. This book creates a dialogue among Palestinian and Israeli authors, who examine opposing versions of the historical narratives in the context of contemporary Israeli-Palestinian relations. In hard-hitting essays the contributors debate the two justifying and rationalizing constructions, laying bare the conflict’s roots and the distorted prisms that fuel it. Israeli and Palestinian Narratives of Conflict is an invaluable resource for anyone seeking to make sense of today’s headlines. Contributors are Sami Adwan, Dan Bar-On, Mordechai Bar-On, Daniel Bar-Tal, Nathan J. Brown, Saleh Abdel Jawad, Eyal Naveh, Ilan Pappe, Dina Porat, Robert I. Rotberg, Nadim N. Rouhana, Gavriel Salomon, and Mark Tessler.

(1 Sept. 2006) Indiana University Press, Paperback: 296 pages, ISBN-10: 0253218578

ISBN-13: 978-0253218575

Arie L Eliav – Land of the Hart: Israelis, Arabs, the territories,: And a vision of the

(1974) Jewish Publication Society of America, Hardcover, ISBN-10: 082760047X

ISBN-13: 978-0827600478

Akiva Eldar & Idith Zerta – Lords of the Land: The War for Israel’s Settlements in the Occupied
Territories, 1967-2007

The 1967 Arab-Israeli War was a devastating triumph for Israel, which immediately began to establish settlements in the newly conquered territories. Those settlements, and the movement that made them possible, have utterly transformed Israel, and yet until now the full history of the occupation has never been told. Lords of the Land tells that tragic story, and reveals what a catastrophe it has been for both Israel and the Palestinians.

(5 Feb. 2009) Nation Books; Reprint edition, Paperback: 576 pages, ISBN-10: 1568584148

ISBN-13: 978-1568584140

Sari Nusseibeh – Once Upon a Country;

These extraordinary memoirs give us a rare view into what the Arab-Israeli conflict has meant for one Palestinian family over the generations. Nusseibeh also interweaves his own story with that of the Palestinians as a people, always speaking his mind, and apportioning blame where he feels it due. Hated by extremists on both sides, his is a rare voice.

“This autobiography¿ carries the passion that might embolden ordinary Israelis and Palestinians to bypass the politicians and establish the peace that all but the armoured men desperately want.” The Independent

“Nusseibeh’s formidable achievement¿ leaves a drop of despair, because of how exceptional it is.” New York Times

(3 Sept. 2009) Halban Publishers, Paperback: 560 pages, ISBN-10: 1905559143,

ISBN-13: 978-1905559145

Carter, Jimmy; Simon & Schuster – Palestine Peace Not Apartheid,

President Carter, who was able to negotiate peace between Israel and Egypt, has remained deeply involved in Middle East affairs since leaving the White House. He has stayed in touch with the major players from all sides in the conflict and has made numerous trips to the Holy Land, most recently as an observer in the Palestinian elections of 2006. In this book President Carter shares his intimate knowledge of the history of the Middle East and his personal experiences of the principal actors, and he addresses sensitive political issues many British and American officials shy from. Palestine is a challenging and provocative book. Pulling no punches, Carter prescribes steps that must be taken for the two states to share the Holy Land without a system of apartheid or the constant fear of terrorism.

(30 Jan. 2017) Political Book Summaries, Paperback: 26 pages, ISBN-10: 2512005364

ISBN-13: 978-2512005360

Ben Ami, Shlomo – Scars of War, Wounds of Peace: The Israeli-Arab Tragedy

This book is about the pendulous movement of Arabs and Israelis between war and peace, in one of the most protracted conflicts of modern times. It is written from the perspective of a professional historian who was also a major participant at key junctures of the peace process. The narrative and analysis begins with the War of Independence and the creation of the state of Israel; the Sinai campaign of 1956, and the relative calm that followed; the Six Day War of 1967, where the Arabs were defeated but the Israelis were also defeated by the euphoria and complacency produced by their overwhelming victory; the Yom Kippur War and the recovery of Arab pride; the ascendancy of America 1973-77; Camp David; the first Intifada, the Gulf War and the Madrid peace conference; Rabin and Oslo; the Netanyahu impasse; the Al-Aqsa Intifada. The final chapters deals with the crisis of 9/11, the Iraq War, and the reactivation of the peace process.

(1 Nov. 2006) Phoenix; New Ed edition, Paperback: 432 pages, ISBN-10: 0753821044

ISBN-13: 978-0753821046

Michael B. Oren – Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East

In 1967 the future of the state of Israel was far from certain. But with its swift and stunning military victory against an Arab coalition led by Egypt in the Six Day War, Israel not only preserved its existence but redrew the map of the region, with fateful consequences. The Camp David Accords, the assassinations of Anwar Sadat and Yitzhak Rabin, the intifada, and the current troubled peace negotiations―all of these trace their origins to the Six Day War.

Michael Oren’s Six Days of War is a gripping account of one of the most dramatic and important episodes in the history of the Middle East. With exhaustive research in primary sources―including Soviet, Jordanian, and Syrian files not previously available―he has reconstructed the tension-filled background and the dramatic military events of the conflict, drawing the threads together in a riveting narrative, enlivened by crisp characters sketches of major characters (many of whom, from Ariel Sharon to Yasser Arafat, are still leading figures today). Most important, Oren has unearthed some dramatic new findings. He has discovered that a top-secret Egyptian plan to invade Israel and wipe out its army and nuclear reactor came within hours of implementation. He also reveals how the superpowers narrowly avoided a nuclear showdown over the Eastern Mediterranean and how a military coup in Israel almost occurred on the eve of the war.

(30 July 2003) Countrysport Press,U.S.; 1st Presidio Press Ed edition, Paperback: 460 pages,

ISBN-10: 0345461924, ISBN-13: 978-0345461926

Rashid Khalid – The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood

 Rashid Khalidi brings perspective to Palestinian attempts to achieve independence and statehood. Bringing together the latest scholarship, he concentrates on the period of the British Mandate (1920-1948), describing the process by which a European Jewish minority overcame the claims and rights of the native Arab majority.

(7 May 2015) OneWorld Publications, Paperback: 328 pages, ISBN-10: 1780748086

ISBN-13: 978-1780748085

Dennis Ross – The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peace

“The Missing Peace”, published to great acclaim last year, is the most candid inside account of the Middle East peace process ever written. Dennis Ross, the chief Middle East peace negotiator in the presidential administrations of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, is that rare figure who is respected by all parties: Democrats and Republicans, Palestinians and Israelis, presidents and people on the street in Jerusalem, Ramallah, and Washington, D.C. Ross recounts the peace process in detail from 1988 to the breakdown of talks in early 2001 that prompted the so-called second Intifada – and takes account of recent developments in a new after word written for this edition. It’s all here: Camp David, Oslo, Geneva, Egypt, and other summits; the assassination of Yitzak Rabin; the rise and fall of Benjamin Netanyahu; the very different characters and strategies of Rabin, Yasir Arafat, and Bill Clinton; and the first steps of the Palestinian Authority. For the first time, the backroom negotiations, the dramatic and often secretive nature of the process, and the reasons for its faltering are on display for all to see. “The Missing Peace” explains, as no other book has, why Middle East peace remains so elusive.

(24 Jun. 2005) Farrar, Straus & Giroux Inc; New edition, Paperback: 800 pages, ISBN-10: 0374529809

ISBN-13: 978-0374529802

Aaron David Miller – The Much Too Promised Land

For nearly twenty years, Aaron David Miller has played a central role in U.S. efforts to broker Arab-Israeli peace as an advisor to presidents, secretaries of state, and national security advisors. Without partisanship or finger-pointing, Miller records what went right, what went wrong, and how we got where we are today. Here is a look at the peace process from a place at the negotiation table, filled with behind-the-scenes strategy, colorful anecdotes and equally colorful characters, and new interviews with presidents, secretaries of state, and key Arab and Israeli leaders.

Honest, critical, and often controversial, Miller’s insider’s account offers a brilliant new analysis of the problem of Arab-Israeli peace and how it still might be solved.

(1 Jun. 2009) Bantam Dell Publishing Group, Div of Random House, Inc; Reprint edition, Paperback: 416 pages, ISBN-10: 0553384147, ISBN-13: 978-0553384147

Yossi Beilin – The Path to Geneva: The Quest for a Permanent Agreement, 1996-2004

From the early days of the secret Oslo talks through the recent crises and new developments in Israel and Palestine, Yossi Beilin has been at the center of it all. This book highlights his intensive and historic meetings with President Clinton, Ehud Barak, Shimon Peres, Hosni Mubarek, King Hussein of Jordan and Madeleine Albright, as well as Beilin’s crucial connections with such seminal Arab leaders as Yassir Arafat, Saeb Erikot, Faisal Husseini and the first prime minister of “Palestine,” Abu Mazen. The Beilin-Mazen agreements are the basis of the current “road map” to Middle East peace.

(1 Aug. 2004) RDV Books, Hardcover: 300 pages, ISBN-10: 097192063X, ISBN-13: 978-0971920637

Clayton E Swisher – The Truth About Camp David

 The collapse of both sets of Arab-Israeli negotiations in 2000 led not only to recrimination and bloodshed, with the outbreak of the second intifada, but to the creation of a new myth. Syrian and Palestinian intransigence was blamed for the current disastrous state of affairs, as both parties rejected a “generous” peace offering from the Israelis that would have brought peace to the region. The Truth About Camp David shatters that myth. Based on the riveting, eyewitness accounts of more than forty direct participants involved in the latest rounds of Arab-Israeli negotiations, including the Camp David 2000 summit, former federal investigator-turned-investigative journalist Clayton E. Swisher provides a compelling counter-narrative to the commonly accepted history. The Truth About Camp David details the tragic inner workings of the Clinton Administration’s negotiating mayhem, their eleventh hour blunders and miscalculations, and their concluding decision to end the Oslo process with blame and disengagement. It is not only a fascinating historical look at Middle East politics on the brink of disaster, but a revelatory portrait of how all-too-human American political considerations helped facilitate the present crisis.

(21 Sept. 2004) Nation Books, Paperback: 208 pages, ISBN-10: 1560256230,

ISBN-13: 978-1560256236

Reading list on personal views of the conflict

Walid Khalidi – All That Remains: The Palestinian Villages Occupied and Depopulated by Israel in 1948,

Israel was founded in 1948, but there was settlement there prior to its establishment. All That Remains catalogues the places that Palestinians called home before Israel’s 1948 borders were drawn.

(13 April 2006) Institute for Palestine Studies, Paperback: 636 pages,

ISBN-10: 0887283063, ISBN-13: 978-0887283062

Ari Shavit – My Promised Land

Shavit is a left-leaning Israeli newspaper columnist who doesn’t shy away from criticism of his nation and its policies. This is a deeply personal look at Israel’s history that reflects the evolution of the author’s politics over time.

(3 Feb. 2015) Spiegel & Grau; Reissue edition,  Paperback: 480 pages,

ISBN-10: 0385521715, ISBN-13: 978-0385521710

Martin Sieff  – The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Middle East

Sieff is a right-leaning correspondent who’s covered the Middle East extensively. The title is a good indicator of his book’s tone. Sieff has few kind words for the Arab world, or the G.W. Bush administration’s policy in the Middle East — he has few kind words for anyone, really. The book is a deep dive into the Western conservative narrative of the region.

(1 April 2008) Regnery Publishing Inc, Paperback: 230 pages,

ISBN-10: 1596980516, ISBN-13: 978-1596980518


Tom Bissell – My Vacation in the Holy Land

 It’s no surprise that Christians flock here to visit the holy sites. Bissell joins a tour group of Zionist Christians (it’s a thing) and — well, it’s complicated. On Harper’s Magazine.

Sarah Glidden – How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less

Many Jewish youth take a trip to Israel with the organization Birthright, which offers an opportunity to see what’s been given to them in the Torah. Sometimes they stay. Often, like in Glidden’s graphic novel, their biases colour their experience and they come away with more questions than answers. This is a good starting point for those trying to understand the conflict in the Middle East.

(30 Aug. 2016) Drawn & Quarterly; 01 edition, Paperback: 212 pages,

ISBN-10: 1770462538, ISBN-13: 978-1770462533

Abbie Rosner – Breaking Bread in Galilee: A Culinary Journey into the Promised Land,

 The idea that food will bring us together is the premise for this book. If only it were so simple. Rosner’s 2012 release is good read nonetheless, and it includes stories about the Druze, a minority population who live primarily in Northern Israel.

(18 April 2012) Hilayon Press, Paperback: 260 pages, ISBN-10: 9657594006

ISBN-13: 978-9657594001

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