My New Novel: THE EXODUS BETRAYAL: A President Confronts Israel


My new novel, The Exodus Betrayal: A President Confronts Israel, is about Hailey Hannagan, the first female president of the United States who lands in that office as a matter of fate, with little of no experience in higher office.  The overarching subject of my novel is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and is centered around a hypothetical but not unlikely attack by Israel on Iran’s nuclear program.  The novel deals with the run-up to the attack and the president’s failed attempts to prevent it.  The war then takes unexpected and precarious turns for Israel, Iran, and the US. Its climax and ending suggest a possible resolution to the generations-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Phil Weiss, editor of Mondoweiss, interviewed me about my novel. The interview: (“Imagine a US president taking Iran’s side in conflict with Israel, and you get Maguire’s thriller ‘Exodus Betrayal’”) also contains reader comments about the interview and about my novel.

As the novel deals with the politics of the conflicts in the Middle East, I’ve attempted to introduce some history and differing perspectives about these conflicts through various characters: American, Jewish, Israeli, Palestinian, and Iranian.  Since this is in large part a historic novel, some of the characters may appear to be recognizable or at least very similar to real-life characters.  Despite any apparent similarities, this is a work of fiction and each character is purely fictional, although many of the events they participate in are historically accurate.

To broaden the historical perspective and context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, I’ve used a device I call the London Calling interviews which consist of fictional interviews by a well-known radio correspondent of actual historic characters at different points in time in which they attempt to describe and interpret historic events they were a part of.  There are nine of these London Calling segments.  None of these segments is directly related to the plot of the novel.  Sources for the historic events in each segment are contained in the Endnotes with hyperlinks from the event to its endnote source. If the source is available on the internet, a hyperlink is present that will take the reader directly to the source’s website.  Most are Wikipedia sites which I chose for simplicity of reading, and quick access by the reader.  I’ve also cited several well-known histories of different aspects of the conflict which are far more detailed and authoritative. For anyone interested in the complicated history of this conflict, these books are well worth reading.

The real-world politics of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are complicated and told through the narratives and lenses of the various participants and the groups they represent, both in the Middle East and in the US.  While I have attempted to be balanced, my novel may well be accused of having its own narrative and perhaps an inaccurate and/or biased one at that.  Any reader who wishes to point out inaccuracies or otherwise comment can contact me through my website/blog at http://www.irishmoses.com by replying to the “My New Novel The Exodus Betrayal” post in the Leave a Reply box at the bottom of that post.  Normally I respond within 24 hours.

My blog, Irish Moses, has the subtitle and theme, “How to Save Israel in Spite of Herself: Solving the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict” which comes from the title of an article written by the renowned American diplomat, George W. Ball in the April 1977 issue of Foreign Affairs magazine. In the article he criticized US Middle East policy and recommended it use its vast power and influence to force Israel to abandon the Palestinian territories it conquered and occupied during the 1967 Six Day War and enter into a permanent peace settlement with the Arab nations and allow the Palestinians to have the land and country of their own promised them in the 1947 United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine.

While my writings on my blog demonstrate a critical view of Israel’s post-1967 Six Day War conduct and annexation and settlement policies in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, I remain a strong supporter of Israel and firmly believe the U.S. has a moral obligation to protect Israel’s existence from any foreign threat.  However, I also agree with George Ball’s prescient article that Israel’s illegal settlements and annexation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem are causing great harm to U.S. vital national security interests, and that it needs to enter into a fair and reasonable settlement that both guarantees Israel’s security and provides the Palestinians with the homeland and state of their own promised to them by the United Nations in 1947.

Irish Moses, my blog, is named in honor of an American Episcopalian who played a crucial role during the founding days of Israel.  In 1948, David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s founding father and first prime minister, called the American who directed and led Operation Magic Carpet, “the Irish Moses”  because he and his fleet of silver C-54 transport planes and pilots flew tens of thousands of Jewish refugees from all over the world to the new homeland for the Jews, the state of Israel.  That American was my father, Robert F. Maguire, Jr. He and the pilots that flew for him were all World War II veterans, most had served in combat, but few if any were Jews.

In 2004, just a year before his death, my father was awarded the Medal of Valor  by the Simon Wiesenthal Center for “his heroic efforts that helped to rescue tens of thousands of Jews” during 1948-49 after the founding of the State of Israel.  Paradoxically, my father, the “Irish Moses” for Israeli Jews, became very critical of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians in his later years, and refused an invitation to attend ceremonies in Israel celebrating the 50th anniversary of its independence in 1998. His refusal and criticism of Israeli policies toward the Palestinians sparked my interest in the Israeli-Arab conflict over Palestine and was the motivation for my blog and my novel, The Exodus Betrayal.

As the youngest son of the Irish Moses, I hope my blog, writings, and novel, The Exodus Betrayal will contribute to a greater understanding and empathy for the plight of the Palestinian people, and the re-creation of a promised land and a homeland of their own they too can return to and live peacefully in alongside the existing Jewish homeland of Israel.

Gil Maguire

Oxnard, California, June 2019

This entry was posted in antisemitism, apartheid, East Jerusalem, Israel, Israeli, Israeli settlements, Jerusalem, lobby, occupation, occupied territories, Palestine, Palestinian, Settlements, Uncategorized, West Bank, Zionism, Zionists. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to My New Novel: THE EXODUS BETRAYAL: A President Confronts Israel

  1. abubenadhem says:

    No, Mr. Weiss, I would never have said that to Rev. King. I have always highly admired peace and justice activists like him (and you?) for their courageous, vital work. As I said in my comment above, “We should urgently press for universal peace and justice in this world.” I think that non-Jews as well as Jews should try hard to “repair the world.” It’s just that new holes keep opening up as the old ones are patched. I’m a disillusioned old man. More power to the younger generations!!!

    • BARRY WEISS says:

      I am an old man too—83 in a few days and I am also not pleased with the course of history in many respects, but we old guys have nothing to loose by standing up for justice. Many times it is not clear whose cause is just, but in the case of Israel and worldwide Jewish and other anti democratic support for its awful policies against its Non-Jewish minority, it is clear that Israel and its gang of allies stand for gross injustice and must be called out.

      Sent from my iPhone

      >

      • abubenadhem says:

        I’m glad that you can still stand up, Mr. Weiss. More power to you! Never thought I’d see the day, but it’s hard for me to stand up now, let alone stand for more than 5 minutes or walk in a demonstration. I try to “stand up for justice” and “call out…gross injustice” but I need to try much harder “next time.” Best wishes to you for good health to 100!

      • BARRY WEISS says:

        Thanks much. We all have our physical limitations-I would not begin to tell you about my many physical limitations. I used to go on demonstrations and other stuff I can no longer do, but the mind is still working and I still speak out—I am not very popular in some quarters, but I have nothing to loose and don’t care!

        Sent from my iPhone

        >

  2. abubenadhem says:

    This report today from “The Real News Network” includes a clip of Sen. Lindsey Graham predicting the very plot of your novel: Israel will attack Iran’s nuclear facilities and then ask for US help if it has trouble. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhpGXbVzUHs

    Unfortunately, Sen. Graham has gets incomparably far more publicity than you do, Mr. Maguire; and, unfortunately again, the response to that unlawful Israeli attack which he envisions is far different to the one that President Hannagan manages to make.

  3. Barry Weiss says:

    Mr. Maguire, your analysis of the present day State of Israel is spot on. Unfortunately, your solution is deeply flawed. Even if a “two state solution” were feasible (as you try to show through the catastrophe brought on by Israel in your novel), it is unjust. The land now know as Israel should be a democratic secular state with equal rights and citizenship for all, Jews and non-Jews. We would not accept a White-Christian US with inferior rights for Jews and other minorities and that scheme should not be acceptable in Israel. A separate Palestinian State does not solve the issue of equal rights for the 20-25% of the inhabitants of present day internal Israel who are Palestinians or other ethnic groups and ethnic cleansing to force those people to a separate Palestinian State is an outrageous solution. Would you ask US citizens of Mexican heritage to go live in “their State of Mexico” if they want equal rights? Another major flaw in your reasoning is to assume that it is only the present Likud Government of Israel that is racist. The fact of the matter is that the Labor Party in power was just as racist–from the Cast Lead attack on Gaza back to the founding of Israel. There are those who say a democratic secular state is unrealistic because Jewish Israelis will never accept it and there were those who said that equal rights for Blacks in the Southern States of the US was unrealistic because Whites would never accept it. Don’t try to solve a gross injustice by imposing another gross injustice which may sound more palatable, but is an awful solution.

    • abubenadhem says:

      Mr. Weiss (related to Phillip?), I fully agree with you that Israel/Palestine should be one “democratic secular state with equal rights and citizenship for all.” Please write a novel that shows how this MIGHT happen. I value Maguire’s novel for the refreshing and hopeful female gender of the POTUS character and for “the Hannagan Doctrine” of “tough love instead of endless enabling of bad behavior (p. 292) of our “ally,” Israel. We should urgently press for universal peace and justice in this world; but, at nearly 80 years, I think that those conditions will only be found in the afterlife/after death reality. Shalom/As-salam aleikum/Peace be with you.

      • BARRY WEISS says:

        And would you have told Martin Luther King,Jr. the same thing-that you must wait until the afterlife to get justice? This situation is no different than that one. I suggest you read MLK’s letter from the Birmingham jail to liberal white ministers who cautioned him to “take it easy.”

        Barry

        Sent from my iPhone

        >

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