This column consists of capsule reviews of recent books about Israel, the Palestinians, and related subjects from various publishers. This special focus is intended to help analysts to better understand the trends in the histories of Israel and the Palestinians, the internal and external terrorist challenges facing them, and the components that may be required to formulate effective counterterrorism and conflict resolution strategies to solve their long conflict.
This article explores the British influence on the origins of Israeli Special Operations and elite units before and during the Second World War. Specifically, it brings to light the roles Captain (later Major-General) Orde Wingate and the British Special Operations Executive played in the creation of the Special Night Squads and the PALMACH, respectively. It concludes with an examination of the consequences of this military and philosophical influence for the British in Palestine and for the creation of the state of Israel. The primary source material for this article comes principally from Wingate’s personal papers at the Imperial War Museum and the SOE’s declassified documents in the National Archives, both in London.