Friday, September 1, 2006

Reading As' ad AbuKhalil and Alan Dershowitz

I am currently reading two books: As' ad AbuKhalil's The Battle for Saudi Arabia and Alan Dershowtiz's The Case for Peace: How to Solve the Israeli-Arab Conflict. I attended the small university where AbuKhalil teaches (when he's not at Berkeley) and I remember the students' admiration for him. Outspoken and as well-versed in Middle Eastern politics as one can be, AbuKhalil enjoys his large "fan base" (for lack of a better term) via his blog and appearances on shows such as Bill Maher's Politcally Incorrect. His book is a thorough education and accessible, even if you don't have a good grasp of how the House of Saud and other aspects of Saudi-U.S. politics work. Highly recommended.

Dershowitz's book so far is interesting (on the two-state solution with many jabs at Chomsky and others) but there aren't many traces of objectivity, in my opinion, at least so far. Obviously, Dershowitz (of Harvard Law and defending OJ fame) has reasons to lobby for one solution as opposed to another, but if you can read the book aware of that bias, it is interesting enough. I should withhold lengthy criticism until I finish the book, but it's not the compelling read for which I'd hoped.

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