Martin Kramer has a dazzling deep dive into Ari Shavit’s account of an Israeli “massacre” in the city of Lydda during the 1948 war today in Mosaic, the wonderful website of the Tikvah Fund edited by COMMENTARY’s former head honcho, Neal Kozodoy. As Kramer systematically goes through the claims in Shavit’s account, he finds major discrepancies with other accounts. “I’m a historian,” Kramer writes, “but I haven’t made a study of the 1948 war, and I haven’t tracked down every source. There are no documents for this episode, only oral testimonies, with all their attendant hazards. Officers and soldiers contradict themselves, they contradict their comrades, and Israelis and Palestinians obviously contradict one another. But what I uncovered in just a few days of archival research was more than enough to reinforce my initial doubts about Shavit’s account, and should be enough to plant at least a seed of doubt in the mind of every reader of My Promised Land.” Read the whole thing.
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