Israel in the Mind of America

In This Review

Israel in the Mind of America

by Peter Grose
Knopf, 1983
361 pp. $17.95
Purchase

With unflagging research and a lively style, Peter Grose, an American scholar with a background in government and journalism, has traced American interest in the return of the Jews to Zion from its scattered appearances among a few individuals in the early 19th century to the official U.S. government recognition of Israel in 1948. The minds of most Americans, as Grose observes, were relatively indifferent to Zionism and the Palestine issue. The real struggle was for the minds of successive presidents of the United States, between an activist segment of the American Jewish community and those U.S. officials who saw the problem in terms of geopolitics and U.S. interests in the Arab world. He is not a one-sided partisan; he exposes the faults and foibles of all concerned (above all, the State Department). What slant the book has derives from his chosen theme: that America and the Jewish state are "bonded together" through history and shared values.