The authors explore the complex challenges facing Israel, and the extent to which its present state structures and institutions can adapt and accommodate themselves to the diversity of security threats that it now faces. This book will be of interest to those who wish to understand the dynamics that have shaped and continue to shape the state of Israel, and the extent to which these have influenced its search for security in the modern Middle East.
Since the end of the Cold War, academic debate over the nature of war in the contemporary world has focused upon the asymmetric nature of conflict among a raft of failed or failing states, often held together by only a fragile notion of a shared communal destiny. Little scholarly attention has been paid, however, to one such conflict that predates the ending of the Cold War, yet still appears as intractable as ever: Israel’s hostile relationship with Lebanon and in particular, its standoff with the Lebanese Shi’a militia group, Hizbollah. As events surrounding the ‘Second Lebanon War’ in the summer of 2006 demonstrate, the clear potential for further cross border violence as well as the potential for a wider regional conflagration that embraces Damascus and Tehran remains as acute as ever.
This book focuses on the historical background of the conflict, while also considering the role that other external actors, most notably Syria, Iran and the United Nations, play in influencing the conduct and outcomes of the Israeli-Lebanese conflict. In addition, it also looks at Hizbollah’s increasing sway in Lebanese domestic politics, its increased military cooperation with Iran and Syria, and the implications of such developments.
This book will be of much interest to students of Middle Eastern politics, War and Conflict Studies, International Security and International Relations in general.
Clive Jones is Professor of Middle East Studies and International Politics in the School of Politics and International Studies (POLIS), University of Leeds, UK. His books include Soviet Jewish Aliyah 1989-92 (1996), Israel: Challenges to Democracy, Identity and the State (with Emma Murphy, 2002), and co-editor The al-Aqsa Intifada: Between Terrorism and Civil War (2005).
Sergio Catignani is Lecturer in Security and Strategic Studies and MA Programme Director for the MA in Security and Strategic Studies at the Department of Politics, University of Sussex. He is the author of Israeli Counter-Insurgency and the Intifadas: Dilemmas of a Conventional Army (2008).
Now in a work of major importance, Mearsheimer and Walt deepen and expand their argument and confront recent developments in Lebanon and Iran. They describe the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the United States provides to Israel and argues that this support cannot be fully explained on either strategic or moral grounds. This exceptional relationship is due largely to the political influence of a loose coalition of individuals and organizations that actively work to shape U.S. foreign policy in a pro-Israel direction. Mearsheimer and Walt provocatively contend that the lobby has a far-reaching impact on America's posture throughout the Middle East—in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, and toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict—and the policies it has encouraged are in neither America's national interest nor Israel's long-term interest. The lobby's influence also affects America's relationship with important allies and increases dangers that all states face from global jihadist terror.
Writing in The New York Review of Books, Michael Massing declared, "Not since Foreign Affairs magazine published Samuel Huntington's ‘The Clash of Civilizations?' in 1993 has an academic essay detonated with such force." The publication of The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is certain to widen the debate and to be one of the most talked-about books in foreign policy.