A balanced history of the war telling the story from both sides. It was fascinating to get a feel and understanding for the world politics going on at the time.
Important book by the author who is now an ambassador to the United Nations.
I would like to comment on the narrator. He reads crisply and does a fine job, with one glaring exception. He pronounces many people's names incorrectly. There are so many wrong pronunciations that it gets to be a bit humorous (if you don't laugh, you might give up on this fine book in frustration). I don't understand why he didn't get a script that gave the correct way to say non-English names. Still, that would not keep me from renting this great book.
I think those who have an indepth knowledge of the places, politics and charaacters prior to listening to this book. I thought I was going to be able to follow it but there was too much detail and I got lost in all the characters and locations. As one person said in their feedback....listen with a map at hand.
I didn't really care for his voice so it was hard for me to listen.
It probably would be a very good listen for those studying historical facts, who already has points of reference prior to listening...It's not for the casual listener. To sum it up...I was looking for a novel and this came across more like a textbook.
This is the way a definitive work on a major military battle should read. Oren's thorough research comes through with amazing levels of detail in both the Israeli and Arab decision-makers and planning staffs, as well as U.S. and UN actions and behind-the-scenes considerations. Amazingly, Oren found a way to cram this book with tons of details, but I never found myself getting bored or lost in the data--probably due to great writing and narration.
Oren's account of the 6-Day War drives home the point that Clausewitz made long ago: "War is politics by other means." Until you understand the political drives, the personalities calling the shots, the miscommunications, the hidden agendas and the historical perspective, you will not truly understand why any given war occurs or how it ends, and if the resulting peace is truly lasting or if it is going to lead to more conflict.
As I read this book, the 2006 Israeli-Lebanon conflict was just heating up. I found the historical insights in this book invaluable in understanding some of the context of the current conflict.
This is a story about Israel's existence that can only be explained by divine intervention. The military screw ups and scenes by the Arab opposing forces are similar to scenes in the Bible where God fought the battles for ancient Israel, i.e., large enemy forces fleeing out of unexplained fear, confusion among Arab forces, the leaving behind of large amounts of weapons & war supplies, hot food left on the tables of Arab homes in a suddenly-vacated city, etc. Although author Michael Oren does not credit God with any of these incredible happenings, a student of the Bible will begin to see the Hand of God. One thing, however, is for certain: The Arab order of battle, initial Arab air superiority, the vast numbers of Arab armies and war supplies against the world's 100th smallest nation, Israel, can only leave the secular reader with one conclusion: Israel shouldn't have been able to win this war. But they did, and it was against all odds!
A very deep study of this important war, which is the foundation of much of the current Middle East situation.
I'm sure that it's hard to find a narrator who's a native English speaker and can pronounce both Arabic and Hebrew correctly. The Arabic sounds correct to my untrained ear, but the pronunciation of the Hebrew names is so poor that it makes certain scenes difficult to follow.
The book does a good job of exploring the events that lead to the tensions of the Arab and Israel factions boiling over into full out conflict for six days in 1967. It paints the picture of world powers on the brink of WWIII as they stood behind their respective factions over the conflict. It certainly explains much of the tensions in the Middle East that plague the world today.
I would strive to make the first half of the book more entertaining. I found the first half a little dull; yes, packed with necessary information about causes, and relevant facts and vignettes that lead to the war, but dry none-the-less. Maybe my anticipation of learning insight about the strategy and tactics employed in the actual battles ruined my appreciation of the build-up in the book.
Also, as a person unfamiliar with arabic names, I found it somewhat difficult to understand some of the pronunciations and found myself backtracking to avoid missing important facts. Overall though, a good book packed with a lot of interesting information about the Six Day War.