The Biggest Prison on Earth
A History of the Occupied Territories
By Ilan Pappé
About the BookShortlisted for the Palestine Book Awards 2017
Named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2017
A Buzzflash/TruthOut Progressive Pick of the Week
From the author of the bestselling study of the 1948 War of Independence comes an incisive look at the Occupied Territories, picking up the story where The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine left off.
Publishing on the fiftieth anniversary of the Six-Day War that culminated in the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Pappe offers a comprehensive exploration of one of the world’s most prolonged and tragic conflicts. Using recently declassified archival material, Pappe analyses the motivations and strategies of the generals and politicians – and the decision-making process itself – that laid the foundation of the occupation. From a survey of the legal and bureaucratic infrastructures that were put in place to control the population of over one million Palestinians, to the security mechanisms that vigorously enforced that control, Pappe paints a picture of what is to all intents and purposes the world’s largest “open prison”.
‘[Pappe] boldly and persuasively argues for understanding the occupied territories as the world’s “largest ever mega-prison”...Pappe’s conclusions won’t be welcome in all quarters but this detailed history is rigorously supported by primary sources.’ - Publishers Weekly
'Ilan Pappe is Israel's bravest, most principled, most incisive historian.' - John Pilger
“The U.S. may incarcerate more people than any other nation, but its ally Israel runs the world’s largest prison: the Occupied Palestinian Territories, where the Palestinian people lack basic human rights and are subject to the indignities of illegal collective punishment. Israeli historian Pappe lays out how this dire situation came to be, beginning with the plans formulated prior to 1967’s Six-Day War.Pappe's conclusions won't be welcome in all quarters, but this detailed history is rigorously supported by primary sources.”
-- Publishers Weekly, STARRED Review
"Pappé’s book is critical for understanding the present situation and looking forward to possible solutions.Highly recommended."
"What is new in The Biggest Prison on Earth is Pappe’s detailed accounting of exactly what the Israeli planners were contemplating in 1963; namely, “the largest ever mega-prison for a million and a half people – a number that would rise to four million – who are still today, in one way or another, incarcerated within the real or imaginary walls of this prison.”
"A hard-hitting look at the nuts and bolts of Israeli occupation.”