Whether or not Benjamin Netanyahu remains prime minister his impact on Israel and beyond will remain. There are very few leaders left in Israel or around the world with the capacity to fully grasp and articulate the historical and prophetic relevance of what is happening in Israel, the Middle East and around the world today.
Netanyahu, the first and only Israeli Prime Minister born and raised in Israel after the State of Israeli’s foundation is uniquely qualified to help us understand Israel’s place among the nations as he does in his book “A Durable Peace: Israel and its Place Among the Nations.” Alongside the Bible, Netanyahu’s manuscript from 2009 gives us essential inside perspectives that help us more fully understand what is really happening today in the Middle East today and provides insights on how to stand up for Israel. A.M. Rosenthal of the New York Times says about Netanyahu’s book, “Without reading it people seriously interested in the Middle East will remain intellectual bystanders, ducking the historic discourse it forces open.”
In this meticulously researched book, which took him five years to complete, Netanyahu traces the origins, history, and politics of Israel’s relationship with the Arab world and the Gentile nations. In his easy to read and sometimes humurous style, Netanyahu highlights those key factors that will surely determine the future of this region.
The first is “the theory of Palestinian centrality,” the idea that if one solves the Palestinian problem there can peace in the Middle East. Now, long after he became the first politician to expose this deception, the world is coming to realize that Netanyahu was right all along. The turmoil in the Middle East is not really about the Palestinians at all but an Islamic was against the Jewish State.
Another big lie Netanyahu exposes is what he calls a “reversal of causality,” the idea that Israel is the cause of the problems plaguing Levantine Arabs and the reason for the Arab attacks on Israel. The prime minister meticulously documents historical events proving that the exact opposite to be true. The real cause of most modern problems throughout the Middle East began and continue because the Arab nations keep attacking Israel. A fact ominously predicted in the Bible of the problems that will come upon those who come against Israel (Gen. 12:3).
Netanyahu discusses the problem of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, a movement that claims to be the “representative of Middle East Arabs.” He calls the terror group a “Trojan horse” planted to undermine Israel and shows that establishing Palestine as a state in the region is a counterproductive, dishonest and antisemitic plan.
And yet, even in the face of these insurmountable difficulties, Netanyahu puts forth a realistic and hard-hitting plan of how peace can be achieved. He says that the Arabs must become convinced that their aggressions will only always result in negative consequences. If most Arabs become convinced of that, they may decide that Israel has a right to exist after all, and that the Jewish state is not casus belli, the cause of war in the Middle East. The new alignments of Arab nations now making peace agreements with Israel in these days are in large part a result of Netanyahu’s long-term commitment for Israel to make peace with the Arabs from a position of strength.
From here, he argues, that Israel must always retain strategic depth, otherwise the temptation for Arabs to keep trying to overwhelm it will be irresistible.
In the final chapters, Netanyahu reviews Jewish history from antiquity to the present, pointing to the resilieance of Jews in ancient times, their gradual weakening in the Middle Ages, and the reassertion of their ancient Jewish identity in Zionism and the modern state of Israel. The existence of Israel is a refutation of the theory of the fall of civilizations (as developed by Toynbee for example) and as such is an inspiration for Jews and non-Jews alike for the future of mankind.
Netanyahu concludes that the lack of truth has been a major cause of the Arab wars on Israel, a prophetic insight into the destructive powers of propaganda and what we now call “fake news.” He points out that Israel’s problem is not territorial but existential. That the story of Israel is of a people seeking to establish its rightful, God-given place among the nations. If our society cannot accept the existence of the Jewish nation, no nation is safe. Anyone could be the next target. “If peace is to endure, it must be built on foundations of security, justice, and above all, truth.”
The appendices in the back of the book include documents that were signed and witnessed by world powers at various times of the twentieth century promising land and homes to the Jewish people. The book makes an excellent reference work on Middle East politics. The Maps and Appendixes pinpoint the logic of the requirements to assure Israel’s peace and security.
A Durable Peace: Israel and its Place Among the Nations, 512 pages, publisher: Grand Central Publishing (October 14, 2009)