The Star and the Scepter: A Diplomatic History of Israel (2020)

The first all-encompassing book on Israel’s foreign policy and the diplomatic history of the Jewish people, The Star and the Scepter retraces and explains the Jews’ interactions with other nations from the ancient kingdoms of Israel to modernity.

Starting with the Hebrew Bible, Navon argues that one cannot grasp Israel’s interactions with the world without understanding how Judaism’s founding document has shaped the Jewish psyche. He then sheds light on the people of Israel’s foreign policy through the ages: the ancient kingdoms of Israel, Jewish Diasporas in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Emancipation, the emerging nineteenth-century Zionist movement, and Zionist diplomacy post World War I and surrounding World War II.  Finally, Navon elucidates Israel’s foreign policy from 1948 (the birth of the state) to our days: the dilemmas and choices at the beginning of the Cold War; Israel’s attempts to establish “periphery” alliances; the Arab-Israeli conflict; Israel’s relations with Europe, the U.S., Russia, Asia, Africa, Latin America, the UN, and the Jewish Diasporas; and how twenty-first-century energy geopolitics is transforming Israel’s foreign relations today.

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The Victory of Zionism: Reclaiming the Narrative about Israel’s Domestic, Regional, and International Challenges (2014)

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In The Victory of Zionism, Emmanuel Navon challenges the popular belief that the future of Zionism depends on the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, powerfully defending the idea of a Jewish nation-state from its assaulters both at home and abroad.

In direct opposition to Peter Beinart’s The Crisis of Zionism, Navon argues that Israeli democracy is not threatened by the status-quo with the Palestinians but by judicial activism. He reveals how, over the years, the separation of powers in Israel was replaced by a hierarchy of powers dominated by the Judiciary; exposes the European Union’s interference in Israeli politics via government-funded NGOs; shows the consequences of the United States’ blundering foreign policy; and explains the complexities of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

The Victory of Zionism is a must read for leaders, opinion-makers, and citizens who care about the future of Israel and of the Middle East.

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From Israel With Hope: Why and How Israel Will Continue to Thrive (2011)

download (1)An International Relations expert and an unapologetic Zionist, Navon offers a unique and refreshing approach to Israel and to the Middle East. From Israel With Hope is a collection of sharp and thought-provoking essays on the peace process, on Israeli politics, on Jewish nationhood, and on Israel’s foreign relations.

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A Plight Among the Nations: Israel’s Foreign Policy Between Nationalism and Realism (2009)


As the world expects the new US Administration to solve the perennial Arab-Israeli conflict, one cannot fail to notice a paradox. On the one hand, there is seemingly a broad consensus between Israel, the Palestinians and the international community about the “two-state solution.” On the other hand, this “solution” keeps working in theory and failing in practice. This book explains why. By meticulously analyzing the evolution of Israel’s foreign policy between the Yom Kippur War (1973) and the Oslo Agreements (1993), the book shows how Israel’s leaders, through a trial-and-error process as well as a constant tension between nationalism and realism, came to accept the two-state solution only to realize that the Palestinians’ “acceptance” of that solution was purely tactical, temporary, and insincere. The world can help bringing peace to the Middle East by recognizing that the “two-state solution” is fundamentally incompatible with the “right of return.” This book is a must-read for foreign policy decision-makers and for anyone interested in the future of the Middle-East.

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