The Birth of Israel, by Jorge Garcia-Granados; We Need Not Fail, by Sumner Welles; Hate, Hope and High Explosives, by George Fie
These three books, though published only recently, are already ancient history. But this does not mean that they are not worth reading. Mr. Fielding Eliot, to begin with the author whose findings have dated least, gives a lively account of a whirlwind tour of the Middle East, which lasted precisely from March 21 to May 26 of 1948. During these weeks he visited Palestine, Lebanon, Transjordan, Iraq, Persia, Egypt, Turkey, and Greece, and he writes with self-assurance about them all. Not unexpectedly, his general conclusions are very superficial. He assumed, for instance, that Mr. Bevin and Mr. Marshall had already last August reached a full accord on recognizing Israel! But this by no means destroys the value of his specialist observations on the Jewish and Arab armies. Though he only saw the skirmishes in Palestine prior to May 5, he convinced himself that the Jewish Army would easily dispose of all its rivals and, even more interesting, he found that British officers on the spot shared his view. Indeed, he tends to tip the balance too far and to underrate the size of the Egyptian Army and the quality of the Arab Legion. Hate, Hope and High Explosives is well worth reading, because it surveys the Middle East from the narrow viewpoint of Anglo-American strategy, and it recognizes—that areas so remote from each other as Greece, Persia, the Sudan, and Palestine are part of a single problem, which demands a single Anglo-American policy.
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