Like many of his fellow Israelis, journalist Horovitz (A Little Too Close to God
) has had his optimism for peace quashed by the past three years of Middle East violence. "I am much more immediately conscious than I was just a few short years ago of the evil that men are prepared to do, and especially the threat posed by the death cult that is extremist Islam," he writes. In this work, a mixture of personal and political reportage, Horovitz eloquently depicts the anguished state of life in one of the world's most vexing trouble spots. In well-constructed vignettes and interviews, he also shows how the violence has affected personal life in Israel and the West Bank—whether it's his own family and friends on edge, waiting for the next terror attack, or Palestinians, who have to deal with Israeli checkpoints, raids and air attacks. He details the political events of the past few years—the failed peace offers at Camp David and Taba, the outbreak of the second Palestinian intifada and the subsequent carnage on both sides. The editor of the news magazine the Jerusalem Report
, Horovitz constructs a strong case that while Israel has not been blameless, it is the Palestinians, specifically Yasser Arafat, who are primarily to blame for the current impasse. Horovitz's political arguments aren't new, but he lays out his case clearly and without stridency. This is one book that anyone who wants to learn about the current depressing state of affairs in the Middle East should read. Agent, Bennett Ashley.