Monterey Institute of International Studies

“The Worst-Kept Secret” by Professor Avner Cohen on Newsweek’s Best Books of the Year List

A portion of the cover of Avner Cohen’s new book "The Worst-Kept Secret: Israel’s Bargain with the Bomb"

The cover of Professor Avner Cohen’s “The Worst-Kept Secret: Israel’s Bargain with the Bomb”

December 14, 2011 - 12:00am

Monterey Institute Professor and CNS Senior Fellow Avner Cohen received very favorable reviews in the New York Times and other publications for his newest book “The Worst-Kept Secret: Israel’s Bargain with the Bomb” (Columbia University Press). As a perfect ending to a good year, his book has now been chosen as one of the best books of the year by the writers of Newsweek and its sister publication The Daily Beast.

“The Worst-Kept Secret” follows Professor Cohen’s widely-praised 1999 book “Israel and the Bomb” and delves further into Israel’s status as the “only nuclear-armed state that refuses to acknowledge its possession of the bomb” and the implications of that approach for both governmental policy and societal behavior in the Middle East’s only liberal democracy.

Daily Beast contributor, former CIA officer and senior Brookings Institution fellow Bruce Riedel placed “The Worst-Kept Secret” on top of his list of notable books for the year 2011, calling it a “must-read.” At President Obama’s request, Riedel chaired the 2009 strategic review of policy toward Afghanistan and Pakistan. Riedel says Professor Cohen’s book “reveals the truth about Israel’s nuclear deterrent and the balance of power in the Middle East” and calls it “a useful antidote to the Iran hysteria of war-mongering politicians.”

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