'A Senseless, Squalid War'

Voices from Palestine 1945 - 1948

Norman Rose

* The troubles in Palestine between the end of the Second World War and the declaration of the state of Israel on 14 May 1948 ruptured Middle Eastern history and left an indelible mark on the modern world.

* Chronicling in gripping detail this critical period that led, for the Jews, to the establishment of their national homeland, and, for the Palestinians, to their Nakba ('Catastrophe'), Norman Rose's 'A Senseless, Squalid War' gives powerful expression to all those who took part in these stirring events: Britons, Jews and Arabs alike.

* The book draws on a rich medley of official documents, private papers, biographies, memoirs, diaries, letters, newspapers, novels, songs, plays and reminiscences. It vividly reconstructs the attitudes and experiences of the many diverse participants, be they foot-soldiers or generals, hawks or doves, politicians or diplomats, dissidents, terrorists, writers, teachers, or simply men and women on the street, each voice telling its own story, woven into a compelling historical narrative that shifts seamlessly from one level of experience to another.

* A diplomatic stalemate amidst the horrific revelations of the Holocaust; militant guerrilla groups plagued by internal divisions on both the Palestinian and Zionist sides, seeking to undermine the British presence; Jewish refugees in their tens of thousands trying to reach Palestine on the notorious 'death ships' from war-torn Europe, with tragic - often fatal - consequences; the mounting tensions that culminated in an inter-communal 'civil war' and later in the threat of a 'war of extermination and momentous massacre'; and finally the plight of many thousands of Palestinians who emerged from the war without a home.

* All these events, and the voices of those who lived through them, are recreated as never before. A Senseless, Squalid War' makes a dramatic and original contribution to our understanding of one of the most deep-rooted and controversial international problems that continues to baffle and bedevil us to this day.

  • Bodley Head
  • Published 19th March 2009
  • 288 Pages
  • 162mm x 240mm x 29mm
  • 528g