The book appears to be interesting although quite at odds with the rabbinical traditions of how Jewish history unfolded. Nevertheless, it accepts that Jews today are descended from the Jews of Biblical times, who lived in Judea.
This is too much for Arab newspaper Moheet, which blares on its headline that The Guardian is pushing The Big Lie that "Jews are God's Chosen People from their homeland Palestine."
Here's what The Guardian says:
How, though, are "Jews" to be defined: as an ethnic grouping or as the adherents of a god? The Bible, that titanic record of their beginnings, and without which they would surely long since have gone the way of the Moabites, blurs the question by casting them as both. Not merely a people, they are a Chosen People, united by a common line of descent from Abraham and a code of laws inherited, via Moses, directly from YHWH. Simultaneously fantastical and transcendent, this is a narrative that plays directly to one of Schama's greatest strengths. He has always had a genius for celebrating the myths he is simultaneously deconstructing. The methods of analysis he once applied to the Dutch republic and the French revolution are now applied to holy writ. Jews first become Jews, in Schama's telling of their story, by a feat of willpower. Tradition generates its own backstory, which then takes on the cast of reality. "The Hebrew Bible is the imprint of the Jewish mind, the picture of its imagined origins and ancestry."Through the bizarre filters of the Moheet author's mind, he translates this into "Jews are God's chosen people, according to the Torah, which is why the United States is an advocate for their rights!... [The book] confirms the idea that the Bible was written in Hebrew, which indicates that it represents the imprint of the Jewish mind."
Moheet goes on:
Then the author repeats fanatical Zionist lies: that Jews survived without their Palestine, spread out in different countries governed by various historical, political and cultural laws that helped to preserve their Jewish identity.Jewish history is now a Zionist lie!
Moheet also says the article states:
It's time to write about the history of the deep faith of the Jews, and the importance of following the Torah and the rabbis to return to their homeland and Jewish identity.I couldn't find anything close to that quote.
In the end, this hysterical review proves that for Arabs, the threat isn't Zionism - the threat is Judaism. The very existence of Jews, conitnuing to practice a faith that predates Islam by millennia and that indeed Islam stole many of its ideas from, continuing to venerate Israel and its holy places that still exist from before Mohammed was born - that is the scariest idea in the Muslim world that must be fought tooth and nail.
Because the truth indicates that Islam isn't so special, but rather it is a pale derivative of a religion that is still going strong.