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This Burning Land

This Burning LandLessons from the Front Lines of the Transformed Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

A profoundly different way of looking the Israeli-Palestinian conflict ... more

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Overview

A profoundly different way of looking the Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Reporting from Jerusalem for The New York Times and Fox News respectively, Greg Myre and Jennifer Griffin, witnessed a decades-old conflict transformed into a completely new war. The West has learned a lot about asymmetrical war in the past decade. At the same time, many strategists have missed that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has become one of them. This book shows the importance of applying these hard-won lessons to the longest running, most closely watched occupation and uprising in the world.

The entire conflict can seem irrational -- and many commentators see it that way. While raising their own family in Jerusalem at the height of the violence, Myre and Griffin look at the lives of individuals caught up in the struggles to reveal how these actions make perfect sense to the participants. Extremism can become a virtue; moderation a vice. Factions develop within factions. Propaganda becomes an important weapon, and perseverance an essential defense. While the Israelis and the Palestinians have failed to achieve their goals after years of fighting, people on both sides are prepared to make continued sacrifices in the belief that they will eventually emerge triumphant.

This book goes straight to the heart of the conflict: into the minds of suicide bombers and inside Israeli tanks. We hear from Palestinian informants who help the Israeli military track down and kill Palestinian militants. Israeli settlers in isolated outposts explain why they are there, and we hear the frustrations of a Palestinian farmer who has had his olive grove cut in half by Israel's security barrier
Shows the important lessons that can be learned by viewing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as an example of modern, asymmetrical war
Authored by long-time reporters on the Middle East, the book provides a balanced and detailed look at the fighting based on first-hand experience and hundreds of interviews
Explains how the landscape of the conflict changed and why the traditional approach to peacemaking is no longer valid

With a new perspective on what's really going on in Israel and the Palestinian territories, The Familiar War is a book that will inform the debate on the Middle East and the future of the peace process, as well as our understanding of other conflicts around the world.


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Greg Myre worked as a New York Times reporter in Jerusalem. He was a foreign correspondent for two decades, reporting from more than 50 countries and covering a dozen wars and conflicts...more

Reviews

"Myre and Griffin have written a stunning piece of nonfiction about the tortured and heartbreaking stalemate in the Middle East. This is a brilliant book - superbly written and devastatingly insightful. The fact that they raised two little girls while reporting this story makes every explosion, every riot, every checkpoint especially upsetting. I don't know how they did it."

Sebastian Junger, author of "War" and "The Perfect Storm"

"Myre and Griffin have written an extraordinary story -- personal yet hard-hitting -- that takes you inside the world of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the hopes and fears that drive it. There are no punches pulled here. A must read for anyone who prefers Middle East reality over fantasy."

Aaron David Miller, former U.S. peace negotiator and author of "The Much Too Promised Land."

"This Burning Land" is what you get when you unleash two excellent reporters on one of the wold's most compelling stories. With eloquence, insight, and a real sense of urgency, Greg Myre and Jennifer Griffin bring to life places like Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip during a time of siege and chaos. Even if you disagree with their conclusions, you will be swept up in their story of tragedy and hope.

Jeffrey Goldberg, Atlantic correspondent and author of "Prisoners: A Muslim and a Jew Across the Middle East Divide."