In This Review

Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs: From Peace to War
Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs: From Peace to War
By Shabtai Teveth
Oxford, 1985, 234 pp.

Using the Zionist leader's diaries and letters as a supplement and correction to what he said publicly at various times, Ben-Gurion's biographer tells a fascinating story of his changing thoughts and proposals on relations with the Arabs, his plans for dialogue, cooperation and possible federation, and his talks with Musa Alami and other Arabs, from the time of his arrival in Palestine to the White Paper of 1939. Much of it has an unreal quality, in the light of the realities of the time and of what has happened since. Indeed, as the author concludes, Ben-Gurion's moves in dealing with the Arabs were above all tactical; he never wavered from the priority given to Jewish immigration, strength and statehood.