The Politics of Partition: King Abdullah, the Zionists, and Palestine 1921-1951


In this reissue of the abridged paperback edition of his critically acclaimed Collusion Across the Jordan, Professor Shlaim chronicles King Abdullah's relationship with the Zionist movement from his appointment as Emir of Transjordan in 1921 to his assassination in 1951. Focusing on the events that led to the partition of Palestine, the author, a leading figure in the school of revisionist Israeli historians, challenges many of the myths and legends that have come to surround the first Arab-Israeli war and the creation of the State of Israel. For this reissue, Professor Shlaim has written a new Introduction, placing the book in the wider context of the on-going debate about 1948, and reflecting on the subsequent course of Israeli-Jordanian relations, which culminated in the signing of a peace treaty in 1994. This is a masterly and authoritative study, which not only illuminates the past, but adds substantially to our understanding of the present. It is essential reading for all those interested in the politics of the Middle East.

Link to the publisher: Oxford University Press


In the 1920s, hard-line Zionists developed the doctrine of the Iron Wall: negotiations with the Arabs must always be from a position of military strength. This doctrine, argues Avi Shlaim, became central to Israeli policy; dissenters were marginalized and many opportunities lost. Drawing on a great deal of new material and interviews with many key participants, Shlaim places Israel's political and military actions under an uncompromising lens. The result is a fresh and informed account of one of the world's most intractable conflicts of modern times.