Conversations with History: Institute of International Studies, UC Berkeley

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War in History and in Fiction: Conversation with Michael B. Oren, Historian and Writer; Senior Fellow at the Shalem Center, Jerusalem; November 8, 2005, by Harry Kreisler

This interview is part of the Institute's "Conversations with History" series, and uses Internet technology to share with the public Berkeley's distinction as a global forum for ideas.

Welcome to a Conversation with History. I'm Harry Kreisler of the Institute of International Studies. Our guest today is Michael B. Oren who is a historian and a novelist. book coverHis publications include Six Days of War: June 1967 and the Making of the Modern Middle East, and a novel, Reunion. He is a senior fellow at the Shalom Center in Jerusalem.

  1. Background ... Zionist upbringing ... soldier father ... Middle Eastern history ... war ... creativity
  2. Writing Fiction vs. History ... being a historian ... historian's search for truth ... false leads ... novelist's search for truth ... imagination and personal experience
  3. Researching the Six-Day War ... diplomatic vs. military history ... striving for balanced view ... precursors to war ... the spark ... Arab nationalism and rivalries ... one-upmanship in anti-Israel belligerence ... superpower tampering
  4. Israel's Response ... the planned surgical strike ... events out of control ... trying to stop the juggernaut of war
  5. Writing about War ... acts of bravery ... the Liberty incident ... human element ... Eshkol, Nasser, Dyan
  6. The Changed Middle Eastern Landscape ... end of pan-Arabism ... rise of PLO ... territorial expansion of Israel ... volatile region ... proactive US response in 2002 ... comparing pan-Arabism and Islamic fundamentalism ... advice for students

Oren OrenOren

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